State of the District event, a first, will offer update on Park City schools |

State of the District event, a first, will offer update on Park City schools

Event aims for ‘transparent communication’ with community

Pamela Manson
For The Park Record
Jill Gildea, superintendent of the Park City School District, speaks during an event in October. Gildea and other school officials next week are scheduled to host the first-ever State of the District, an event aimed at updating the community about what’s happening inside Park City’s schools.
Park Record file photo

Update: The Park City School District will instead hold the event via Zoom due to the rise in COVID-19 cases. The Park Record will post a link to the virtual meeting here when it is available.

The Park City School District is hosting its first State of the District address next week to update parents and the community about its past successes and future plans.

Superintendent Jill Gildea, Chief Academic Officer Amy Hunt and Chief Operating Officer Mike Tanner will speak at the inaugural event. The presentation will include an overview of the district master plan, an update on academics and arts and a discussion of a massive capital projects bond that voters approved in November.

In addition, the work of the district’s departments will be highlighted, and community partners and volunteers will be recognized for their support of education.

The district plans to make the presentation an annual activity, Gildea said.

The event is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. on Jan. 12 in the Ecker Hill Middle School auditorium, 2465 Kilby Road. The presentation will be recorded for future viewing.

Anna Stampfli, director of the Parent Education and Community Engagement department, said Gildea and the Board of Education have been working to streamline communication between the district office and the public in response to requests from the community.

She said the district also is planning to host two other events every year, a picnic in August and a town hall in May.

“It will be a new age for transparent communication,” Stampfli said.

The State of the District presentation follows an eventful year that included the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and questions about the district’s measures to combat the crisis. In the fall, parents were vocal about concerns that officials were not strictly enforcing a mask mandate imposed at some schools by Summit County.

And in November, voters passed a $79.2 million general obligation bond that will help fund new construction and renovation at Park City High School, Ecker Hill Middle School and Parley’s Park, McPolin, Jeremy Ranch and Trailside elementary schools. The approval of the bond was the culmination of a yearslong master planning process that saw voters overwhelmingly reject an earlier proposal in 2015. The overall cost of the facilities upgrades is $129 million.

Gildea’s three-year tenure has been unprecedented, Stampfli said.

“What she and the Board of Education have done to keep our schools open, like no other state, is really incredible,” she said.

The Park City School District has about 5,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade.

The State of the District event will begin with a retrospective video of “where we’ve been, where we are and where we are going,” followed by the presentation of the district’s new website, Stampfli said. The schools’ individual websites are still being redesigned and will be finished over the next few months, she said.

The Ecker Hill Middle School String Band will perform, and a student who won a photography contest will be presented with her award.

The district’s first Welcome to Our Schools Picnic, which was sponsored by the Park City Education Foundation, was held Aug. 20 at Park City High School’s Dozier Field. Community members were able to meet principals and assistant principals while they enjoyed ice cream and live music.

The town hall proposed for May would be the first for the district. Administrators would get feedback from the community to help in their planning for the new school year, Stampfli said.

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