Dear PWCS Families, Employees, and Community,

We are committed to launching thriving futures for our students, and a key part of this commitment is enabling career paths for our students beyond graduation. On Wednesday, I had the opportunity to visit our Employment Fair for PWCS students, hosted by the PWCS Career and Technical Education Department and our high school career counselors. Hundreds of PWCS students met and interviewed with more than 40 businesses and government employers for real-world jobs, gaining meaningful insight and experience into both the hiring process and post-secondary employment options available. There was palpable excitement from everyone involved, and I would like to thank our employer partners who participated.

PWCS continuously evaluates our safety and security protocols and determines where improvements can be made in our capabilities to deter, detect, and defend. One of these enhancements has involved the consideration of advanced security screening technology. Throughout February and March, PWCS engaged our community in discussions surrounding the potential implementation of new preventative technology.

Yesterday evening, Vernon Bock, chief operating officer, presented an update on the use of advanced security screening technology to the School Board. Based on the feedback received from the school safety community engagement sessions and the effectiveness of the Evolv system in detecting mass casualty weapons at high-volume entry points, I have requested School Board authorization for the school division to enter into a subscription agreement to implement the Evolv Express® systems, a weapons screening technology, in all secondary schools by the end of September 2023.

The recommendation was based on feedback received from the Safe Schools Advisory Council, School Safety Officers, Prince William County Police Department, and the school safety community engagement sessions held over these past few months by the school division. The School Board will consider approval of this recommendation during their May 3 meeting. If the Board approves, all secondary schools will be outfitted with this technology by the end of September 2023. More information may be found at our website.

As we continue to plan for the next school year, we are actively recruiting current vacancies, such as bus drivers, teaching assistants, finance specialists, cafeteria workers, custodians, and substitutes. As you can imagine, hiring this many new qualified employees, in addition to filling our current teacher vacancies, requires the support of our entire community. Please refer your family, friends, and recent graduates to apply, or consider applying yourself—you belong here! More details are available on our website. I appreciate your assistance in supporting our schools and classrooms with the hiring of outstanding individuals dedicated to serving our students.

Before the month of April concludes, I would like to recognize Occupational Therapy Month. Occupational therapists support our teachers by analyzing student performance and modifying activities to increase a student’s participation in the educational environment. Thank you to all our occupational therapists for the unique value and support they provide to our students and school community.

As a reminder, Friday, April 21, schools and offices are closed in observance of Eid al-Fitr. Enjoy the extended weekend.

Dr. McDade signature
LaTanya D. McDade, Ed.D.
Prince William County Public Schools