Dear PUSD Staff and Families,
I wanted to take this opportunity to welcome each and every one of you to the start of the 2023-24 school year. A special shout out to Abraxas, Poway to Palomar, and Valley, who have already started the school year! This is my 7th year welcoming staff and families back to school at Poway Unified – my favorite time of year. Whether your little one is a TK-er or Kindergartener starting for the first time, or your child is entering their senior year, the beginning of the school year is always an exciting time, brimming with possibilities.
Every year, we try to capture the spirit of our PUSD students and staff with a fun and inspiring music video to welcome everyone back. This year’s song is “The Magic in Me.” Watch it here! Here in Poway Unified, we believe everybody has a little magic inside of them; how you use it is up to you! Each of our students and staff members bring their unique strengths (or superpowers) to leverage in the teaching and learning that happens every day in our classrooms and on our campuses. I can’t wait to see how this magic spreads across Poway Unified this year!
In my kick off remarks with PUSD leadership, we focused on the theme of “Believe” (inspired by the popular and uplifting show Ted Lasso about an American football coach and a British soccer team). Whether or not you're familiar with the series, the concept of believing in ourselves and each other resonates universally. Just as the characters in the show work together toward a common goal, our school community's shared objective is to empower our students as world-class learners who will grow into productive and valuable members of our larger society. We accomplish this in many ways, from academic to social-emotional learning. A recent article showed that Poway Unified has the highest college enrollment rate (82%) of any school district in San Diego County and our graduation rate is over 95%. But our success can also be measured in the ways our students and staff are directly improving and impacting our community through their service, care, and relationships as well.
And despite experiencing some of the hardest years in education over the last few years, we have collectively risen to the challenge. Never forget that the people of Poway Unified - our staff, families, and students are what makes PUSD so special. You are making a difference every day, even when you might not realize it.
Also fundamental to our success is the involvement of our parents and guardians. Family and school partnerships lead to students’ higher academic performance, better attendance, and improved social skills. Poway Unified is fortunate to have so many families who are highly involved in their child's education, support our schools, and embrace our mission and values. I encourage you to volunteer, attend games or performances, go to Back to School Night, and join your school site’s PTA, Foundation, or School Site Council. I look forward to working alongside you toward the success of each and every student.
I hope you are as excited as I am to begin this new school year!
Thank you for your support,
Marian Kim Phelps. Ed.D.,
Marian Kim Phelps, Ed.D.
Executive Assistant II to the Superintendent
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