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A note from Superintendent Swanson | November 2

Dear Community,

As superintendent of Westminster Public Schools, I have a front-row seat to the wonderful things happening in our school district. I also have a behind-the-scenes understanding of the challenges confronting our community. Both things can happen simultaneously, and I believe being an effective leader means a willingness to have candid conversations.

That is what I hope to do in this message.

For me, it is easy to write about our “best ever” homecoming parade in September and last week’s WPS District Showcase. Both events showed WPS at its best. Still, other examples in this edition of What’s up WPS would be our profile of Teacher Michael Linert and a video showing how our teachers shared our CBS story with a group of out-of-state educators.

That being said, we need to have an honest conversation about the increasing violence the metro area has seen among teenagers when they are not in school. Sadly, too many young people, including some from Westminster Public Schools, are putting themselves in dangerous situations where guns are being carried and, in some instances, being fired. Too frequently, we hear news stories about young people dying or being injured because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time.

On Thursday, November 10, at 5:30 p.m., we will be hosting an online “Community Conversation” about the dangers and negative influences that some teens are now exposed to. We have many partners, including police, mental health experts, community organizations, and civic leaders, joining us in this conversation.

It is essential to understand that this increasing gun violence is not just a police issue. It affects all of us. By working together, we can get ahead of this problem and try to prevent future tragedies.

A link to the meeting will soon be available. We will make it widely available in hopes that as many people as possible will participate. If you have questions or a perspective you would like to include in the conversation, please send them to communications@westminsterpublicschools.org.

I believe that a strong community tackles tough issues, even when it is a difficult topic.

In the end, this is Our Community.

Kindest regards, 

Dr. Pamela Swanson
Superintendent of Schools