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Dear Kern High School District Parent,

Despite the state's ongoing financial crisis, the Kern High School District's (KHSD) more than 37,000 students will, during the 2013-14 school year, continue to benefit from a wide variety of academic, athletic and other extracurricular programs. The District will also be able to fund the numerous services that meet student nutritional, health, counseling, tutorial and other needs.

We at the District are particularly excited about the start of the 2013-14 school year, because of the implementation of a new Student Information System. The new system, called Synergy, is a significant improvement from the previous program first used 25 years ago. Teachers are now be able to record grades, take attendance, post lessons and assignments, and communicate with students and parents using Synergy. Parents are able to view their student's attendance, grades and assignments from any web-enabled computer or mobile device and communicate electronically with teachers and staff.

The District's commitment to a rigorous instructional program will continue in 2013-14. That commitment has been reflected in sustained District progress on a number of state and federal accountability measurements. For example, the District's score on the Academic Performance Index (API), a state measurement of District academic success, increased last year for the ninth consecutive year.

The District's Career & Technical Education Programs will also continue to flourish in 2013-14. Six KHSD campuses now feature Pre-Engineering Programs, thanks in large part to strong financial support from Chevron. Every KHSD school will have at least one signature Career & Technical Education Program.

District students will also continue to benefit from a wide array of extracurricular opportunities. District athletic teams continue to distinguish themselves in California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) athletic competition. District teams will also continue to distinguish themselves in academic competitions such as Future Farmers of America (FFA), Mock Trial, Academic Decathlon, "We, the People, and the Constitution," and Virtual Enterprise.

I am optimistic the 2013-14 school year will be one of the most successful in the 120 year history of the KHSD. That optimism is well founded in the ongoing commitment of our parents, our staff and the people of this community to the KHSD's "Tradition of Excellence." For that commitment, I offer my sincere appreciation.

Donald E. Carter, Ed.D.

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