Your turn — Buckingham schools prepare for new year

Published 12:15 pm Wednesday, July 27, 2022

At Buckingham County Public Schools, we are eagerly gearing up for the new academic school year, beginning Monday, Aug. 8. Faculty and staff have been working diligently this summer planning and preparing to welcome our students back.

June was a successful month for our summer school program for grades kindergarten-12 as 222 students participated. Our 21st Century Community Learning Center programs at both Buckingham County Elementary and Buckingham County Middle schools also welcomed 133 students to participate in various activities and programs.

We welcomed Travis Ridley as our new assistant superintendent of Pre-K-12 instruction July 5. He has been working diligently planning our teacher orientation and determining strategies to help us become fully accredited.

In July, we welcomed 22 new teachers to our three-day New Teacher Academy. Teachers participated in various trainings, learned division procedures and began working in their classrooms. We also hosted 43 rising kindergarten students during a four-day JumpStart program. Students were able to meet their teachers, tour the building, begin learning kindergarten routines and procedures, and participate in learning activities.

We also are finishing a major roofing project at the high school. The work is scheduled to be completed before the first day of school.

For the first time, Buckingham County Public Schools will supply bookbags for all enrolled students in pre-K through fifth grades. Bookbags will be stocked with school supplies and students will have the opportunity to pick out a free, age-appropriate book to keep in their home library. Bookbags, supplies and books will be available for pick up from 9 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, July 27 and Thursday, July 28, at the Dr. Carter G. Woodson Education Complex, as well as during open house on Thursday, Aug. 4.

On Saturday, Aug. 6, we will celebrate an all new welcome back to school event at the Dr. Carter G. Woodson Education Complex. We will have inflatables, cotton candy, popcorn and snow cones. Bookbags, supplies and books will be available for all pre-K through fifth grade enrolled students at this event.

We are planning our convocation to welcome all faculty and staff back on Monday, Aug. 1 at the middle school gymnasium. We will host various vendors from local businesses and organizations, recognize the Division Teacher of the Year, release our motto for the 2022-2023 school year, and review our goals along with the steps we need to accomplish to become fully accredited.

Teachers will prepare for the opening of school from Tuesday, Aug. 2 through Friday, Aug. 5. We are anticipating a fun and exciting year of learning and achievement and cannot wait to have students back in our hallways and classrooms. It will be a great year to be a Buckingham Knight!

DR. JOHN KEELER is the superintendent of Buckingham County Public Schools. He can be reached by email at jkeeler@bcpschools.org.