Return to Headlines

Note from Superintendent Swanson: May 29, 2020

Westminster Public Schools Community,

During a time like this, words alone are probably not enough to describe the range of emotions all of us are going through right now. The COVID-19 pandemic has made us afraid for the health of our loved ones, especially the elderly, and sad for our high school graduates - the Class of 2020.

Fortunately, I can offer you more than words.

With the help of Board of Education Director, Joe Davidek, and several talented staff members from Westminster Public Schools, we created a music video dedicated to our high school graduates and the entire district.

The song “Rise Up”, which you can view via the link below, was selected because it is the theme song for the Westy Class of 2020.

The opening lines speak to the uncertainty and frustration we are all feeling right now:

"You're broken down and tired
Of living life on a merry-go-round"

The song goes on to celebrate the shared values we all hold dear: Persistence, a strong sense of community and optimism.

There are still so many questions to be answered about what the coming school year will look like, but I can assure you that WPS will rise up to the challenge before us. We know that when students return to school, hopefully August 18, it will be in a competently different environment. 

We are working on multiple scenarios that will allow for in person learning with appropriate social distancing practices that will keep our staff and students safe. That is always our highest priority.

We will also utilize our Anytime/Anywhere Learning program to offer remote learning where appropriate. This pandemic “STRESS TESTED” our system and, as a result, we will emerge from this crisis as better educators.

We have learned to fully embrace technology and our learning management system, Empower, and all of us were forced to be more flexible and creative than ever before.

As we work to fully develop our plans for reopening, we will be reaching out to you again in June to ask you for your thoughts and opinions, and try to get a sense of what might work best in our community. Our goal is to keep you informed every step of the way.

In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the video and know how much I appreciate your support and understanding during these difficult times.

Kindest Regards,

Dr. Pamela Swanson

Superintendent of Schools

"Rise Up" - A Musical Dedication to our Westminster Students and Staff

Performed by (in order as they appear on screen):

  • Piano: Dr. Pamela Swanson, Superintendent of Schools
  • Vocals: Amanda McPherson, Music Teacher, Hodgkins Leadership Academy
  • Vocals: Kathryn Donaldson, Theatre Director, Westminster High School
  • Vocals: Hannah Judson, Choir Director, Westminster High School
  • Vocals: Renae Venman, Special Services Teacher, Hodgkins Leadership Academy
  • Vocals: Dr. Justin Davis, Creative Arts Pipeline Coordinator
  • Piano: Joe Davidek, Vice-President, WPS Board of Education
  • Violin: Kasia Antosz-Solawa, Orchestra Teacher, Ranum Middle School
  • Cello: Michael Linert, Orchestra/Mariachi Director, Westminster High School
  • Vocals: Tara U'Ren, Choir Teacher, Scott Carpenter Middle School
  • Vocals: Jesse Fernandez, Vocal Instructor, Metropolitan Arts Academy
  • Flute: Megan Lewin, Band Director, Westminster High School
  • Bassoon: Celeste Garduno, Music Teacher, Skyline Vista Elementary
  • Violin: Rebecca Fenton, Science Teacher, Ranum Middle School
  • Sound Editing – Daniel Davidek
  • Artistic Direction – Lora Davidek, Joe Davidek, Justin Davis
  • Production & Editing – Jeffrey Colebank