collage of photos of staff and students

Dear Families, Partners, Colleagues, and Students,

As we enter the Thanksgiving holiday, I would like to take a moment to share my thanks and appreciation. As Superintendent of Hartford Public Schools, I have so much to be grateful for: our committed staff who show up each day with passion and dedication, our partners and families whose collaboration allows us to support the whole child, and our beautiful and capable students who give their best every day. I am thankful for: 

  • Teachers, including substitutes, early childhood educators, and all educators, whose expertise, passion, and commitment come through every day in the instruction they provide our students and the love they share with all members of our community.

  • Paraeducators who provide much needed and deserved supports for our students and teachers.

  • Staff, including Student Engagement Specialists and Family and Community Support Service Providers, who thus far have conducted over 4,000 home visits to our families.

  • Over 1,800 students who are no longer chronically absent, to their families who committed to improved attendance habits, and to the staff who provided the support to break down barriers to attendance. Keep up the great work! We’re almost at our much deserved Thanksgiving break!

  • School nurses, physician assistants, dental hygienists and all medical personnel who keep our children healthy, comfortable, and supported.

  • School safety officers and Behavior Technicians who keep our buildings safe, act as role models for our students, and go above and beyond to foster a welcoming environment in our schools. 

  • Bus drivers, custodians, and food service workers who make sure our students get to school safely, are able to learn in a clean, safe environment, and have access to healthy, nourishing meals.

  • Principals and assistant principals whose instructional leadership has truly shaped learning experiences, fostering a culture of growth and excellence.

  • Parents, caregivers, and guardians who show up for your children to cheer them on the athletic fields, marvel at their talent in the theater, celebrate their progress in the classroom, and help with homework.

  • Office and administrative support staff who help maintain the effective operations and organization of each building, while providing crucial support to all members of our community.

  • Community partners for offering enriching opportunities for students, from arts to academics, and creating a safe space for them before and after the school day.

  • Social workers, Psychologists, and Counselors for enhancing the social and emotional well-being of our students, and providing the necessary support so they feel seen, valued, and heard.

  • The teams at Central Office, including finance, academics, talent management, operations, family and community partnerships, content directors, coaches and more educational leaders who are working together to create the conditions for all members of our community to succeed and always working in service of our beautiful and capable students.

We have collectively made great strides this school year in improving our attendance, engagement, school culture, and instructional efforts for our students. This progress and momentum should set us up for success throughout the year if we continue to work together and continuously improve the work we all do in service of our young people. 

I am so grateful and thankful to be the Superintendent of a diverse, robust, and welcoming school district with over 16,500 students, 3,500 committed and talented staff, and over 30,000 engaged and loving family members. Thank you all for allowing me to work on your behalf and in service of our students. 

With great thanks and gratitude,

Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez