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Weekly Eblast - May 15th, 2020

Exciting news & stories from inside your schools and across the community.

From the Superintendent

Dear Ferndale Family,

Immediately prior to the beginning of the Stay at Home order, the Ferndale Schools community overwhelmingly voted to support our bond campaign. This week, the sale of the first series of bonds was held. The expected interest rate on the bonds was 3%; however, the actual rate on the sale was 2.818503%. This will yield $11 million in savings for our community on just this first series of bonds. A huge thank you goes out to our Assistant Superintendent of Business Services, Nancy Hoover, for leading this project.

We also received the results of a community survey conducted by the City of Ferndale this week. This survey showed tremendous gains in the community's perception of Ferndale Schools compared to the previous time the survey was conducted in 2009, and the results ranked us at or near the top in all categories against state and national averages. Please read the story below for more analysis, and a reminder of our commitment to continuous improvement.

In Education,

Dania H. Bazzi, PhD 
Superintendent, Ferndale Schools

P.S. Don't miss our series of Facebook Live Q&A events next week. Times are listed below. If you are unable to view these videos when they are playing live, do not worry: they will be available on our Facebook page on demand.

News Stories
Free Fresh Food Boxes at Kulick Center - check flyer for dates

Free fresh food for families in need will be available at the Gerry Kulick Community Center, thanks to Gleaners Community Food Bank.

Distribution is from 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm.

See the flyer for pick-up procedure, full details and additional dates.

Keep Reading »
Juneteenth Celebrates the End of Slavery

Today, we celebrate Juneteenth. Juneteenth​ is a festival held annually on​ June 19th​ ​to commemorate emancipation from slavery in Texas.

Why Texas, you may ask? Throughout the Civil War, ​Texas was not as closely monitored as other battle states​.​ For this reason, many slave owners went to Texas in order to keep those they’d enslaved as long as possible. After the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect (Jan. 1, 1863), people enslaved in war-torn states often escaped behind Union lines or fought on its behalf, ultimately winning the war (April 9, 1865). However, approximately 250,000 enslaved people in Texas had no idea that their freedom had been secured.

On​ June 19, 1865,​ Union General Gordon Granger led thousands of federal troops to Galveston, Texas to announce that the Civil War had ended over two months earlier, and everyone had been freed. In the 1870s, ​a group of those recently freed pooled $800 together through local churches to purchase ten acres of land and create Emancipation Park to host future Juneteenth celebrations in modern-day Houston. ​In 1980 ​“Emancipation Day in Texas” became a legal state holiday in recognition of Juneteenth. State offices, however, do not completely close, as it is considered a "partial staffing holiday." Elsewhere, the holiday is also referred to as Emancipation Day, Freedom Day, and Black Independence Day. Many continue to celebrate Juneteenth. Throughout the nation people host cookouts, parades, and other gatherings to commemorate.

In 2019, ​Opal Lee of Fort Worth, TX began walking across the nation at the age of 92 to bring awareness to her campaign for Juneteenth to be a ​National Day of Observance​. "Now​, ​46 states have it as a state holiday​ and there's no reason for it not to be a national holiday," she said. Opal kicked off her movement in Detroit in July 2019, specifically to gain the attention of the 20 presidential candidates in town for the CNN Democratic national debate. She, her family and friends, as well as Detroiters, walked from Hart Plaza along the Riverwalk through downtown to the historic Second Baptist Church (she walked to Washington DC as well). There is currently a proposal in the United States Senate to declare Juneteenth a widely observed holiday. For more information on Opal Lee's journey, check out ​

Get more background on Juneteenth and the history leading up the annual celebration from The Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History & Culture.

Read more about Juneteenth

Keep Reading »
Summer Learning Challenge

Summer is here, and the summer slide poses an especially large challenge after 3 months of distance learning. To keep students intellectually engaged and learning throughout the summer, our educators have organized the IXL Summer Challenge. Students only need to login to IXL using their Clever accounts and start practice their skills online. Reward will be given for reaching the learning hour milestones below.

K-5 Reward Levels

  • 250 minutes
  • 500 minutes
  • 1000 minutes

6-12 Reward Levels

  • 500 minutes
  • 750 minutes
  • 1000 minutes

Contact your teacher for ideas on which Subjects and Standards to focus on. Have fun and enjoy your summer!

Keep Reading »
UHS Graduate Self-Published Book - Available for Purchase

UHS student Jada Charley has completed and self-published her first book! We are so proud of her ambitious accomplishment, and look forward to more great things in the future.

The book is available on her website for direct purchase on Thursday, June 18th.

From the author:

"Jada Charley went through a lot her teenage years. Those situations helped shape the person she is today. Although her journey is nowhere near complete, this book is just the beginning. This short book is filled with advice, letters from the author to the people in her life and herself."

Keep Reading »
Ferndale Schools

MI 48220 United States

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