Superintendent of Schools
Mr. Matthew J. Link
Dear Northern Lehigh Families,
I hope this letter finds you well. It certainly has been a dynamic summer with both challenges and accomplishments. Starting with a sudden shut-down of in-person instruction last March, getting struck with a challenging overnight shift to fully remote learning, and trudging through an unpredictable summer with ever-evolving conditions and conflicting guidance on how to best prepare for the new school year, we have persevered. It’s what Bulldogs do. The Northern Lehigh community celebrated its Class of 2020 graduates with banners, yard signs, gift bags, and so much more. We are truly grateful for all who donated time and products to make that happen for such a deserving class. The first ever double-session commencement ceremony was held on the morning of July 24 th followed by a parade of graduates that same evening. We were the only entity in Lehigh County to obtain a permit from PennDOT for such an event. It has been proven that NLSD is able to do remote technical support for our students and staff, and if that does not work, we can do a drive-through support option. Speaking of drive-throughs, we mastered the art of a Grab-N-Go meal program serving 31,662 meals at no cost to the children of our community! Our Food Services Department truly went above and beyond. Thank you to all the businesses, churches, and individuals who helped make this possible through monetary or product donations. Their generosity sets the table for us to begin our Backpack Buddy Program early this school year ensuring meal security for those most in need.
Administration and staff have been busy prepping the buildings for all to safely return on August 31 st . The buildings and classrooms will look different to start the year, but they are still your schools and we are excited to see our students back in them. Leading up to the first day, the building principals will be communicating with students and their families on what to expect, such as fewer students in the building, social distancing markers, plenty of automatic hand sanitation stations, new traffic patterns in the buildings, additional technology equipment to assist instruction, among other enhancements.
Recently, an information packet was mailed to all families. Included in this packet are some handouts on how you can help implement a safe return to schools. Please read through each item. Because we are starting in a hybrid model, the yellow page in the pamphlet will pertain most to the start of school. You will also notice a postcard with information on how you can help stop the spread of COVID-19, and how to screen your child each morning to determine if he or she should be kept home. This screening should be done every morning. In addition to this information, please be sure to review the NLSD – Health and Safety Plan and the associated Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section on our newly launched website. Congratulations to the team of teachers and members of the Technology Department for designing the new district and school building websites; they look amazing!
As this unprecedented but exciting school year begins, I would like to thank all of our faculty, support staff, administration, and the Board of School Directors for their support in planning what will be the most unique start for us all. To our NLSD families and the community as a whole, thank you for your patience, support, and input. We are certainly all in this together and will be better off because of that. To our students, we are excited to have you back in a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive setting. We have missed you!
Stay well and see you soon,
Matthew J. Link