Fernandez gets outstanding performance evaluation from education board

“We are excited to launch our plans to distribute technology to our students and families in need,” GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said. (PNC file photo)

In its latest evaluation, the Guam Education Board rated the performance of the Guam Department of Education’s Superintendent as outstanding.

The Guam Education Board gave superintendent Jon Fernandez a rating of 4.9 out of 5 for its 2020 evaluation.

He was scored on 10 factors in accordance with Guam law and received mostly 5s from the eight voting members, as well as a few 4s.

Board member Zeny Natividad analyzed the results and said that most of the members’ comments were positive, with many praising the superintendent for facilitating the agency during the dengue fever outbreak last year as well as the current COVID-19 pandemic.

In his previous evaluation, Fernandez scored a 4.6. He says that this current score leaves room for improvement. And while he received much acclaim during the online news conference today, he said the score was reflective of the agency’s employees.

“I take it as an evaluation of how far the department has come. Of how well we work together to solve problems, and I take it as confidence in the direction we’re headed as a department in the future,” Fernandez said.

Regarding the next school year, the Guam Education Board decided that classes will start on August 17th to allow teachers to receive training about distance learning and safety protocols in response to COVID-19.

However, the school year won’t start until GDOE has acquired safety equipment for its schools.

“We are also working at the district level to finalize our work to secure all the protective equipment needed to start the school year. That includes the face masks, hand sanitizers, cleaning supplies, plexiglass and so forth…Those things are currently in the procurement process, but we are hoping to hear before the end of the week whether we are successful in securing the volume of supplies needed to at least get us through the first thirty days of the school year,” the superintendent said.

Fernandez says that GDOE is still working on how to distribute meals to its students during the school year and providing distance learning training to parents and guardians.