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    On a beautiful, sunny Tuesday morning in early September of 2000, the Groveland Elementary School opened its doors and welcomed 975 students. This September we opened the school doors again to begin our seventeenth year as a learning community. Many wonderful things have taken place over the course of the past seven school years. In that time, we have taken our vision and put it into action. This vision included establishing a high degree of trust between students, teachers and parents. We sought to create a school where every child is safe and feels a sense of belonging, and where each child reaches their highest level of academic achievement.

    Prior to opening Groveland in 2000, we listed and communicated to everyone the initial steps we would need to follow to meet these goals. In many ways it was a recipe of things to do. After sixteen years, we have put the recipe away and have now created a road map that will take us through the next five years. The difference between the two approaches is that the road map, which was designed with the past sixteen years of experience in mind, will include the nature of the terrain and any obstacle that might interfere with travel. The road map, like the recipe, will show us the starting point and final destination, but it will also show us the alternative routes that are available to us as we approach our final destination. These alternative routes take into consideration the needs of our students, the talents of our staff, input of our parents/guardians and the success and failures of our endeavors since we began sixteen years ago. Experience has been a great teacher.

    One constant in any organization is that of change. Groveland has had its share of changes. I believe that change can be very positive if we view it as an opportunity to start anew. Our enrollment to begin the new school year will be 830 students. I am also pleased to welcome our new staff members and feel confident that with their blend of talents and years of experience, they too, will help us read our new map, provide direction and suggest new routes in meeting our goals.

    If, the past sixteen years are any indication of the things to come, the 2016-2017 school year will be safe and exciting with a high degree of success for all our students.

    We look forward to wonderful year.