At the September 9 Board of Education meeting, Director of Personnel, Pat Farrell, updated the Board on the District’s Strategic Plan progress. He gave a presentation that highlighted the key areas of the plan that will direct the initiatives of the district throughout the next five years.
“Years one through three have focused on the transition to the new building and collaborative spaces,” according to District officials. “Years four and five will focus on data collection once we transition into the new buildings and collaborative spaces for the next Strategic Plan. The four goals are categorized as Student Achievement; Communication and Community Engagement; Professional Development; and Financial.”
The first strategic plan was introduced in 2010, which continued through 2015. At that point, a three year plan was then formulated, which concluded with the end of the 2017-18 school year. Farrell said that the formulation of the new plan started with communications with all the stakeholders in the community, through the utilization of surveys and input from various meetings. “Embedded in all of these goals is some form of communication,” he said.
Under the Renewal of Process and Goals, for Years 1 through 3: Focus on the transition to the new building and collaborative spaces. For Years 4 and 5: Focus on data collection once the transition into the new buildings and collaborative spaces has taken place, for the next Strategic Plan.
The plan starts at a core belief, stating that, “we believe in a culture that promotes respect and integrity; in collaboration among schools, communities and families; Communication is essential.”
In a balance between interpersonal relationships and technology; All students are capable of learning and learn in different ways at different rates; In equal access for every student. It then states the vision, “our educational community will be a model in identifying individual student needs and providing comprehensive support.” The mission, as has been for several years, remains the same: “We Inspire and Empower Learners.”
The guiding principles of the plan are broken down in the areas of Student Achievement, Communication and Community Engagement, Professional Development and Financial. The goals, with coordinating action steps, are broken down as follows:
Student Achievement:
Align and implement standards, curriculum, programs and experiences to ensure students are prepared for college, career and life.
Action #1: Align curriculum
Action #2: Create a positive school climate
Communication and Community Engagement:
Develop a plan that will communicate and engage the community in the design and construction, and the ongoing maintenance of the District facilities.
Action #1: Utilize the District’s pre-existing communications to update the community on the facilities project.
Action #2: Conduct face-to-face meetings and speaking engagements to discuss facility updates.
Action #3: Plan events that promote staff, student, parent and community involvement related to the building projects.
Action #4: Communicate the maintenance plan for new, existing and renovated facilities.
Professional Development:
Create professional development opportunities for all staff to best meet the needs of student learning.
Action #1: Provide certified staff professional development opportunities to enhance best instructional practices.
Action #2: Provide classified staff professional development opportunities to create a supportive learning environment.
Action #3: Professional development will be focused on collaboration related to shared spaces.
Develop a plan that will financially maintain, support and sustain the District’s beliefs, vision and mission.
Action #1: Publicize, market and inform the community regarding aspects of the District’s budget and elements that impact financial status and promote fiscal responsibility.
Action #2: Explore alternative funding sources and enhance business partnerships.
“I am pleased with the accomplishments we are making and how the plan continues to be a road map for what we need to accomplish in the district,” said School Superintendent, Greg Gurka. The entire Strategic Plan can be viewed in its entirety on the school district’s website at
Contributing Writer