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Growth

Growth in Chesterfield County remains strong. While progress for the county is important, we need to balance progress with the needs of our school system. Many of our students have already felt impacts of growth including classrooms held in trailers and/or large classroom sizes. Ultimately, we do not want growth to negatively impact our students. As our county grows, we need to find creative solutions to meet the growing demands placed on our education system.

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Safety

Safety in our schools is on everyone’s mind.  To keep our schools safe, it takes an entire community including school administration, law enforcement, businesses, faith communities, and parents. Our county leadership needs to continue to invest in the safety of our children.  We must not be lulled into thinking that safety measures are the most important ingredient.  School leadership should also foster strong relationships between students and faculty, to help create a sense of value within each child.   Nothing can replace a healthy relationship that your child receives at school.  This was the key ingredient that was missing in the tragedies, which recently took place across the country.

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Teachers

A teacher must have a high level of competency and relationship skills to open a door for your child.  Research has shown children have a wide range of learning styles.  No longer can our teachers teach to one style.  The best and brightest teachers understand these principles. To hire and retain the best and the brightest teachers, Chesterfield County must strengthen and sustain the climate of our schools. This includes fostering strong leadership skills, defining core values to be followed in the schools, and providing teachers with the tools they need to be successful in a often complicated environment.

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Preparing our Children for the 21st Century Workforce

The job market is constantly changing. Educators and administrators must implement proactive and forward thinking solutions, always keeping in mind the future workplace. For our students, we want them to be knowledgeable about the ever-changing workplace when choosing their post graduation career or studies. Digital-age literacy, inventive thinkers, and effective communicators, are the tools necessary for today’s 21st Century self directed learners.  We must embrace change.  Change is here to stay.

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Conduct in our Schools

Character

There is one quality that stands alone that our children must continue to embrace, and that is character.  We must have this in all our schools, and not leave it to chance.  Character builds honesty, respect, responsibility, and accountability in relationships, in all interactions within our community.  It must be a brand name that fits into our other Core Values, and distinguishes us from all other school systems.

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Academic Rigor

We can’t define success only as a high score in an advanced placement (AP) class.  Although it is one indicator of academic rigor, success for other students may be found through certified training programs, or certifications in technology or trade programs.  The diversity in jobs and the different avenues for successful careers has never been greater.  It is absolutely necessary that part of the rigor of our program is instilling life long learning in our young adults.  Whether they go off to college or enter into a trade, life long learning will be a requirement.

Patty Carpenter ~ Proven Leadership

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