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Thinking, Creating, Reflecting: Impacting the Future

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Letter from the Board: Oct. 15, 2021

Dear Spectrum Community,

Our school celebrates nearly a half-century of progressive education. You, as parents and alumni, see, first hand, the fruits of that commitment as your students become lifelong learners with a commitment to our community and collaboration. In that vein, I am pleased to highlight some of the steps that your Board has taken to meet our commitment to providing the best education possible for our children.

First, however, I should introduce myself. I am an attorney by day, church musician on the weekends, and full supporter of the Spectrum program. I have been a member of the Spectrum Board for just over 3 years, and have, this year, taken on the role of Vice President. As this pandemic reared its head, your Board and School Officers remained committed to each child’s safety along with that of their family. We also remained committed to creating the next generation of learners, no matter the challenges. Spectrum, we can easily say, was one of only a handful of institutions that was able to meet the pandemic and provide a program that continued our progressive education model beyond the classroom into cyberspace. In fact, that’s the point of the progressive education model, to move learning skills and social development above and beyond the classroom. Student success is not gauged just in performance inside the classroom; instead, we see its forms implicated and carried in the larger world. In this pandemic, although we understand the struggle you had, we thank you wholeheartedly for trusting us with your child’s educational wellbeing, and for believing in our progressive education model.

A few other programs that I want to highlight include some of what the Board is undertaking to ensure the long-term sustainability of our institution. At this time, stakeholders are in negotiations to extend the reach of Spectrum’s philosophy and model beyond just Rockford. We are also in the process of reevaluating and revising our long-term strategic plan as well as our building lease. Your executive officers have held several meetings that went well into the night to prepare these for presentation to the Board, and this months-long process culminated in an all-day workshop for the Board of Directors that just concluded a few days ago. The process, however, has only just begun, and we ask for your patience and support. Our goal is that your children will be proud to see Spectrum remain in the community for many decades, will notice the impact that our school had in their lives, and that they will want their children to attend our school. More information will come to you in due course.

Finally, I am pleased to say that your Board will be working to be a more active presence in the school community this year. Due to the pandemic, our ability to host, let alone attend, events was stifled. However, as we meet the pandemic environment (an environment that changes day-to-day and hour-to-hour), we intend to be there to meet you in person and to be accessible to your concerns.

With that, I appreciate your time and sincerely look forward to meeting you at our next school event.

Most sincerely,

Andrew Mertzenich
Board Vice President
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