As I begin my first year as the Anchorage School District superintendent, I want to take an opportunity to thank the community for the warm welcome that I have received. My transition with Carol Comeau began back in early April and could not have gone better. I also want to thank the school board for giving me the opportunity to be a part of this school district and community. One of the things that attracted me to Anchorage was the fact that the school board and community really value and hold the bar high for what is expected of students, teachers and administrators.
My primary focus this year is to increase student achievement in reading, writing and math. On Aug. 1, I will share with principals a comprehensive, multi-year plan for improving the performance of every child with at least one year's growth every year. This plan will be integrated into everything we do, ensuring that we keep our students' success at the fore as we prepare them for college and the world of work after high school.
Anchorage principals and teachers have been working hard to provide a quality education, students have been performing well, our graduation rate is up and our dropout rate is lower than it was just a few years ago. It is very important to celebrate these successes but also recognize that there is always room for improvement. Continuously building on our success will allow us to realize the positive growth we all want for our students.
One of the things I admire about our district is the fact that it is open and accessible to parents and the community. I am available for questions and concerns from our parents and the public. My door is always open and I can be reached at 742-4312 or Browder_Jim@asdk12.org. Also, we have an online suggestion box that gives you an opportunity to provide input, ideas and concerns. Please visit our website to submit comments.
I look forward to being a long-time, active member of this community and interacting with as many of you as possible. We are all in this together. As a public school system, we can and must improve the quality of our students' education by working closely with our parents and community.
Finally, as we begin this new school year, I encourage parents and the public to be active participants in our schools and to give encouragement to our students and teachers all year long. Your positive involvement in our students' lives will help us accomplish our mission: educate all students for success in life.
Thank you for supporting our school district and I look forward to working with each of you.
Jim Browder became the superintendent of the Anchorage School District on July 1.