For many years prior to our current pandemic, our school division has excelled in providing a high quality, engaging, and supportive experience for our students and our families. As a result of our collective work, our division has been recognized for our leadership in public education in many domains, including our student learning outcomes, use of technology, our superior fiscal management and budgeting practices, our ability to meet the needs of our students with disabilities, the safety of our schools, and the overall experience we provide. Our families, employees, and community continue to express their pride about being associated with Goochland County Schools. On all accounts, our school division has been uplifted as an exemplar for public school divisions across the nation.
For over 6 months since March 13, our daily lives as we once knew them have been disrupted. As we know, there is not much that has remained the same. Trips to the grocery store, our places of worship, and restaurants have changed. However, there has been one steady and consistent force that has held steadfast throughout: our school division’s commitment to maximizing the potential of all learners while living our core values of excellence, courage, creativity, honor and optimism. Throughout it all, I have been humbled by the countless examples of sacrifice, innovation, and perseverance that have been exhibited by our employees, students, and families.
Our school division was an elite school division prior to this pandemic. Now in the midst of the most challenging moments of this current crisis, I believe that Goochland County Public Schools is stronger than it has ever been. Every employee, regardless of their title or responsibility, is adapting to multiple daily demands, essentially performing a different job in a different setting, often using different skills than they were pre-pandemic. Our team has encountered these demands with grace, creativity, optimism, and grit. At the same time, our families have made adjustments to their own professional and personal schedules, while creating classroom spaces in their homes to meet the needs of our distance learners. Through it all, our students have been resilient and have motivated us to deliver the absolute best we can to them each and every day. Please accept my gratitude for the time, talent, and efforts that you have exhausted to contribute to the success of our first semester.
I could not be any prouder of our school division than I am right now. We have undoubtedly faced the most challenging personal and professional experiences that many of us have had in our entire lives. We have not just survived these challenges. We have thrived in the face of adversity and uncertainty. It has been our teamwork, our collaboration, our partnership with our school community, and our collective focus on prioritizing our students that has made us Goochland Strong. We are stronger together!
As we approach the upcoming holiday season, I hope you have an opportunity to take care of yourself and your loved ones. Give yourself the gift of time and do things for yourself that you enjoy. I wish you nothing but peace, health, and happiness now and in the future!
Yours in Service,
Jeremy J. Raley, Ed.D.