Hi Neighbor,

This has been both an exciting and stressful week for all of us parents. Back-to-school season always brings a mix of emotions, but transitioning back to an in-person learning environment while COVID-19 still disrupts our lives has made it especially difficult this year. My wife and I are grateful that our daughter is old enough to be vaccinated. I’m thinking about all of you with younger children and hoping that the vaccines will be available for them very soon.

We’re also experiencing changes from the new Comprehensive District Design (CDD). The CDD meant my step-daughter is starting at a new school this year. It was tough to leave friends she’s known since kindergarten at Justice Page Middle School, but we’re making the most of it and she’s very excited to meet new friends at Anthony. Being asked to change schools has been so hard for many kids and families, and I hope all the changes we’ve faced will move us toward a more equitable school system in Minneapolis.

Finally, I want to extend a huge thanks to all teachers and school staff members. I’ve seen how hard you’ve worked for more than a year now making sure our children get the best education possible under these difficult circumstances. One of our amazing campaign volunteers is a first grade teacher: seeing her dedication to her classroom and her students’ families is inspiring. And thank you to everyone at the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers for fighting for the safest possible conditions for both teachers and students.

I wish you and your families a safe and happy school year.