Principals Chris Smith (Daniels Run ES) and Dan Phillips (Providence ES) presented their annual report to the City of Fairfax School Board at the regular school board meeting on Monday, February 7, 2022. The principals discussed how they are spending their Elementary and Secondary School Relief Fund (ESSER) spending and provided a variety of new initiatives to support students.
ESSER funds required schools to address unfinished learning in language arts and math, and to address student emotional wellness. The two schools ESSER fund plans can be found on their websites (links provided below).
Daniels Run ES has 780 students this year, about ten more than last year, according to Smith. He praised his families and community for their support and involvement and the hard work of his staff. “[Our teachers] are thrilled to be back in the building with students, but with a level of being overwhelmed,” Smith said. He talked about the high level of professionalism, flexibility and focus on quality education teachers show each and every day at Daniels Run ES. Smith outlined a number of initiatives to increase literacy and math learning which includes increased staffing such as an intervention specialist, school-wide computer programs, small group instruction, and providing teachers with assessment data to set goals for each student.
Providence ES has 885 students this year, higher than their pre-pandemic school year, according to Phillips. Phillips also praised his Providence ES families for their “kindness and grace” as well as his teachers and staff for their continued focus on students. “I know they are tired and have been pushed to a new limit, but they have never lost their focus on care for kids, compassion for students and care for one another,” said Phillips. Providence ES is also focused on literacy and math. Like Daniels Run ES, Providence is using assessment data, increased staffing and literacy programs to assist in student development.
Daniels Run ES and Providence ES benefit from being a City of Fairfax School, which allows them to have increased staffing including resource teachers and innovation labs for all students. Both schools also emphasized a number of before and after school programs to help students connect and work on important social and academic skills.
“Our annual state of the schools reports are so important to get a mid-year update to see the progression of our students and to see how our schools are using federal, state and city funding,” said Dr. Phyllis Pajardo. “As outlined by our principals, our two elementary schools are working diligently and deliberately to address the academic and emotional needs of our students. I know I can speak on behalf of the City of Fairfax School Board when I say how proud we are of both Daniels Run ES and Providence ES teachers and administrators and their hard work and commitment to every child.”
ESSER funding links