Message from CEO Eric S. Gordon
Welcome to a new school year and what we believe is the beginning of a new era for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.
Our CMSD Summer Learning Experience was advertised as a “summer like no other,” and it did not disappoint. More than 8,400 students took advantage of programs that helped them catch up, get ahead or explore interests. Schools bustled with creative, hands-on activities that kept kids engaged and made their learning joyful and adventurous.
The goal was to reconnect students with school after a year of remote learning that was difficult and challenging for everyone – children, families and CMSD staff.
But Summer Learning also was a prototype for our emerging Vision for Learning. We’re simply calling it The CMSD Experience because it’s for all seasons.
We envision a style that will hold and strengthen students’ interest and give them more ownership of their education. Personalized learning that is based on mastery of standards. Learning that occurs anywhere, anytime, that includes social, emotional and cultural awareness, that creates student-centered pathways to living wage jobs. This is school the way it should be, a system that our kids deserve.
With the aid of federal COVID relief funds, we are beginning to roll out a significant investment in arts, athletics and other extracurriculars that enrich lives. This will include assigning full-time arts, music and physical education teachers to each school, adding time for deeper dives into these interests and running shuttles so participating students can come early or stay late.
We also will begin converting our high school libraries into college and career planning hubs where students can chart their futures. And we are making sure every school has a full-time healthcare professional so we are tending to students’ physical well-being in addition to their academic and social health.
Health and safety remain the District’s top priorities, especially with concerns about COVID-19 still very much on all of our minds. Be assured that we will continue to vigilantly monitor public health conditions and follow federal and state guidelines for guarding against the coronavirus.
For those who would prefer to remain in a remote environment, regardless of the reason, we will maintain the Virtual Academy, which offers recorded instruction. We also have created a new remote school, for kindergarten through 12th grade, with live classes and direction by certified CMSD teachers.
We often hear references to life during the pandemic as the “new normal.” This is definitely NOT the new normal. It is a disruptive and historic event that has exposed inequities disproportionately affecting communities like ours.
What matters now is how we respond to those inequities and make life better for our children, families and educators. At CMSD, we are committed to creating a more fair, just and good school system and making that our new normal.
Eric S. Gordon
9/22/2021 -- The impact of a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic has given CMSD a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take education in a dramatically new and better direction, Chief Executive Officer Eric Gordon said in the annual address.
4/20/2021 -- The conviction of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd is momentous, but the nation still needs to confront the continuing problem of racial injustice, CEO Eric Gordon says in an open letter to the community.
3/1/2021 -- The projects must complement the surrounding neighborhood and help revitalize the community. The city and District have issued a Request for Qualifications that calls for plans that benefit neighborhoods through racial equity, inclusion and wealth building.
2/9/2020 -- CEO Eric Gordon and nine other District leaders have taken their shots. Now they are hoping that others will follow their example and get vaccinated against COVID-19.