Message from Superintendent

Weekly Update from Pine-Richland School District Superintendent

April 2, 2020
Greetings to Pine-Richland Students, Staff, Parents and Community,
We hope this update finds you and your families in good health. The tension between public health (e.g., disease progression and public health recommendations) and societal pressures (e.g., economics, unemployment and routine life activities) continues to grow. Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984, warns that removing or reducing mitigation protocols that slow the spread of COVID-19 can lead to further acceleration of the disease. At the state and national levels, “stay at home” orders have been extended through the end of April at least. This new reality is impacting students, staff and parents in different ways. Millions of people have lost jobs. Parents are working from home and trying to balance the roles of parent, teacher, husband, wife, family member and caregiver. Pennsylvania schools have now been closed until further notice by Governor Wolf. We continue to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on schools across the country.
The continuity of learning program at PRSD is evolving as we gain experience in the new model and receive feedback from all groups (i.e., students, staff and parents). In our approach to continuous improvement, we want to reinforce two key changes/clarifications:
  • Assessment - A podcast was shared yesterday and is now archived on the COVID-19 website. The approach varies by grade levels based on the developmental needs of students. Given the heightened role of assessments, grades, transcripts and GPA at the high school, an innovative approach that reinforces past performance, effort and “benefit of the doubt” was designed.
We also continue to implement the 2019 - 2020 strategic plan initiatives. The third quarter narrative and dashboard updates are available for your information. The study phase of the in-depth program reviews for ELA, Library and Music will conclude in the next month with a digital presentation planned for the Academic Achievement Committee meeting on May 4th. The demographic study of enrollment and residential growth continues. This information will help shape redistricting decisions at the K - 3 level for the 2021 - 2022 school year. We are also on-track to transition to the new student information system (Sapphire) and financial information system (Tyler) for this fall. 
The PRHS a cappella group “Rambunctious” demonstrated innovation and engagement when performing "Colder Weather." We are so proud of Mr. Rickard and the students. Enjoy!
We ask for your support in enforcing social distancing. The Pine-Richland School District facilities are closed. Students should not be getting together on athletic fields or playgrounds. Signage prohibiting activity at the stadium is posted. We want to ensure proactive public health behaviors for our students, families and the community.
Colder Weather - Rambunctious
Finally, please take a couple of minutes to complete this week’s parent survey. We added an open-ended response box to the survey. Please know that we are also contacting 42 families by phone each week that represent all grade levels, buildings and teams. Many of these families also have multiple children at various buildings. It is the combination of feedback from all sources that is driving improvement.
Thank you for your continued support of the Pine-Richland School District. Unless a significant topic emerges, our next district-level update will be sent next Wednesday, April 8th.
Brian R. Miller, Ed.D.
Michael Pasquinelli, Ed.D.
Assistant Superintendent (7-12) 
Kristen Justus, Ph.D.
Assistant Superintendent (K-6)