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MCPS is about children

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“We make decisions based on what is best for our students”

By Taylora Schlosser
Marion County Superintendent

Communication has been a focus area for this school year for Marion County Public Schools. I believe that most people would agree that this winter was the worst we have seen in several years. With 16 days of missed instruction and the fact that we are still going strong at this time of the year, I believe the winter of 2014 will be one to be remembered. During this time, myself and others used every means possible to communicate about the status of school. With less than 10 days of instruction remaining for this school year, we successfully communicated with all parties knowing why decisions were made in regards to weather related issues.
Unlike weather related issues, information cannot be shared in the same manner when it comes to personnel or students. What does this mean? It means that most people, who hear about a situation, only hear one side. The school system is not allowed to discuss matters of personnel or students with anyone other than those people directly involved. Confidentiality is about protecting those involved, and it is the law. Regardless if someone is accused or is accusing, the facts and situation is to be kept confidential. With this being said, school employees, including myself, are at a disadvantage. By disadvantage, we are not allowed to comment about a situation.
MCPS has over 3,200 students attending four elementary schools, two middle schools, one high school, one area technology center, the KY School for the Deaf and the KY School for the Blind. MCPS maintains 11 buildings and 43 buses in our fleet. MCPS employs over 600 people. MCPS is a large organization. There are board policies and procedures that are in place along with state and federal regulations to ensure the efficiency and effectiveness of the system. Our system is about producing the future of our community - our system is about children. They are the investment. 
Again, I recognize that not everyone understands why things are done in some situations with students and staff. But what I really want people to know is that whether it is me making the decisions and/or another administrator, we examine all the information, check our policies and procedures and then make a decision. We make decisions based on what is best for our students, our schools, our departments, or in my case, for the entire school system.
What I do want people to know about me as a lifelong educator is that I love children, and my mission has always been about helping as many children as possible understand how important an education is for their future. My job as the leader is to help staff grow professionally. I want to be a part of an organization that wants to be the best. I believe our strategic planning work is just the beginning of making Marion County a great place for people to live and work. I have BIG DREAMS for our children and I know that there are many people in our community that believe in our BIG DREAMS as well. I am also thankful that our school system can have conversations about BIG DREAMS, and we are not losing business and industry like some neighboring counties; thus, closing schools and losing staff. I will continue to look forward, I will continue to believe in the integrity of our school system, and I will never stop DREAMING for the children and staff in Marion County.