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Letter: Academics: Most Important Focus

To the Editor:

Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) has instituted a great number of innovative programs at T.C. Williams that target students who are struggling academically by giving them the support they need to earn their diplomas. T.C. Williams boasts among the lowest counselor-to-student ratios nationally, forming a system that guides student-led development of individualized career and academic plans. ACPS has consistently increased graduation rates and rigorous curriculum offerings at the city’s only public high school.

Members of the T.C. Williams Class of 2014 are headed to some of the finest colleges and universities in the Commonwealth and the world. Some are preparing to join the armed forces and others stand ready to enter the workforce. ACPS has prepared them well for their next step into being productive citizens.

It concerns me when a citizen states or believes that T.C. Williams High School “has failed to improve the educational performance of all of its students.” Such a statement indicates that some citizens are not aware of the facts around how we serve our student population. These thoughts were sparked by the recent discussion around the feasibility of having lights at Parker-Gray Memorial Stadium.

As we move closer to discussing the feasibility study for lights at Parker-Gray Memorial Stadium, the School Board and I have listened to the thoughts and opinions of many citizens these last few weeks. As superintendent, I am working with the School Board to oversee many areas of operations across the whole division.

These include the maintenance and renovation of athletics facilities.

Giving students the tools they need to achieve academically remains our most important charge — a tenet that informs each and every one of our decisions. We have student-athletes at T.C. Williams earning acclaim for their work on and off the playing field. ACPS supports them, just as the division supports all of our students and their goals.

Alvin L. Crawley, Ed.D.

Superintendent, Alexandria City Public Schools