2024 Newsletter 2 – From the President’s Desk
News2024 Newsletter 2 – From the President’s Desk

As February comes to an end, I wanted to say Happy School Board Appreciation Month to all my fellow board members! As stated in the Governor’s Proclamation, “school boards are the governing bodies responsible for the oversight, success, and effectiveness of school systems across the Commonwealth.” I celebrate the dedication each of you have to your school divisions and, most importantly, your students and staff. At times our jobs as school board members may seem thankless and tiring, but your work is truly appreciated and it’s making an impact in your local districts. 

February is also a time for our school boards and the VSBA to recognize our clerks. The service they provide to our boards is invaluable, and their work is tireless. Many times, our board clerks are the unsung heroes that keep our school board offices running smoothly. Please take a moment to thank your school board clerk for their dedication and passion they bring to the cause of public education.

I hope to see many of you at the Hot Topic Conference in Williamsburg March 22-23, 2024. This will be an excellent learning and networking opportunity for everyone. In years past, this has been one of our better events in my opinion. This year’s conference introduces you to “The Trust Edge Experience,” a trusted methodology employed by name-brand companies worldwide. Discover how it empowers organizations to cultivate high-performing teams while establishing a common language that enhances connection, clarifies objectives, and boosts productivity. I’m also thrilled to invite you to an exclusive President’s Reception on Friday evening. This is a fantastic opportunity for you to mingle and network with fellow board members from across the state in a relaxed and informal setting. The President’s Reception provides the perfect environment to build relationships and exchange ideas.

We are continuing to strengthen our partnership with the Virginia Department of Education in our effort to ensure that your voices are heard and that the students across our Commonwealth have access to the resources needed to be successful. VSBA and VDOE have both expressed our belief in the importance of enhancing student performance. In a show of continued partnership, VSBA will be hosting a private screening of the “Right to Read” documentary. Dr. Lisa Coons, state superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction will be our special guest for that event. Spaces are filling up quickly, so please contact the VSBA office to reserve your seat.

I was excited to be able to kick-off the “VSBA President’s Roadshow.” Since December, I have completed five visits to school divisions across the commonwealth and we have visits scheduled through July 2024. It has been a refreshing experience to connect with so many school board members and to hear your thoughts on how we can improve public education in Virginia. I have thoroughly enjoyed every board meeting and tour that I have been privileged to be a part of. If you would like me to visit your school division, please contact the VSBA office to get that scheduled.

Again, I thank you for this incredible honor to be your president. Thank you for the work that you do for students in your district every single day. I will continue to carry this responsibility to lead with integrity seriously. We are an organization of member school boards and we will always be stronger when we work together. If there is anything that we can do to help advance the needs of your students, please don’t hesitate to call.

Still Believing in Public Education,

Dr. Cardell Patillo, Jr.
VSBA President