|The 2014-2020 Spokane Public Schools Strategic Plan represents our road map for the next six years. This framework is the result of many conversations with parents, educators, principals, community partners and students. Those conversations determined that Spokane Public Schools must make significant changes to reflect higher expectations for students, educators, administrators and the community. This Strategic Plan incorporates those changes and provides direction, responsibility and accountability to accomplish those changes with one overriding goal in mind: increase each student’s achievement at every level, in every classroom.
We know, however, that we will not find success without the continued support of our community. Thank you for finding ways to connect with our students and partner with us as we work together to prepare each student to succeed in our schools and after graduation.
Preamble: This plan establishes a clear direction for the growth and advancement of our District over the next six years. It creates a strategic approach to decision-making and a focused, consistent effort toward accomplishing our goals.
Background: Spokane Public Schools (the “District”) is the second largest school district in Washington State, serving almost 30,000 students in kindergarten through Grade 12. The District’s student population is composed of 57 percent low income, 26 percent non-Caucasian, and 15 percent Special Education students. There are 56 different languages spoken in students’ homes. District facilities include 34 elementary schools, 6 middle schools, 5 high schools, 6 educational alternative learning buildings, and 1 administrative building.
In order to continue improving the quality of education and services provided by the District, and with a profound sense of commitment to the District’s school community, the Board of Directors and Superintendent has undertaken a thorough approach to future planning. During the 2012-2013 school year, the District partnered with ECRA Group, Inc. (“ECRA”) to develop a Strategic Plan. The purpose of the Strategic Planning process is to document the current state of the District and determine a future direction based on stakeholder values. Rigorous research methodology and statistical analysis were used in the examination and synthesis of findings.
In January, February, and March 2013, District stakeholders were given the opportunity to participate in focus groups and to complete surveys regarding their perceptions of the District. From these focus groups and surveys, several themes emerged. Between March 2013 and February 2014, the School Board and district staff developed specific goals and objectives to implement the 2013 - 2018 strategic plan for the District.
The Strategic Plan is intended to provide a framework for decision-making that builds upon a common mission, vision, and guiding principles held by the District community. The process has utilized a broad spectrum of data to result in a Strategic Plan that reflects a shared consensus of stakeholders.
SPS Mission: To develop each student’s talents and skills to their full potential through high standards, rigorous academics, real-life applications, and supportive relationships.
Proposed Spokane Public Schools Guiding Principles
• Each student can learn and deserves our best efforts.
• High expectations and rigorous standards are essential to prepare students for their future success.
• Accountability is essential to ensure excellence for everyone.
• Diversity in people and ideas enhances learning and strengthens our community.
• A variety of learning environments, educational options, and instructional techniques creates a setting where all students can succeed.
• Education is a partnership involving students, parents, staff, and the community.
• Transparent communication with all stakeholders is essential.
• All decisions must be student-focused and data-driven.
• Fiscal stability strengthens our schools and community.
Strategic Goal I: Increase Student Achievement
Students will be provided rigorous academic and real-life learning opportunities to become college and career ready.
Students will be provided high quality,individualized instruction through exceptional teaching, consistent curriculum,and effective assessments.
- Adopt world-class instructional materials and provide support in implementation through effective professional development, curricular supports, and assessments.
- Provide a consistent and clear scope and sequence for teaching aligned to college and career readiness standards.
- Increase the quality of District primary grade offerings and coordinate with area preschool providers to improve student readiness.
- Provide a variety of extra-curricular and co-curricular activities for students across all grade levels.
- Expand the range of and access to educational options, particularly at the secondary level.
- Provide a comprehensive college and career readiness program including focused attention around awareness, affordability planning, preparation and career guidance, and assessment systems.
- Implement recommendations from task forces to include K-12 programming, student identification, program model, and program services.
- Create a regular program evaluation cycle based on program specific data; use program evaluation findings for program improvement, modification, and/or replacement.
- Redesign district K-12 assessment plan to reflect changes in state testing and new curriculum.
- Provide access to appropriate student support services through the use of assessment data to improve the quality of instruction and identify students who need interventions or accelerations.
- Develop within students a strong work ethic,behavior, and citizenship that will lead to success later in life.
- Maximize use of time for instruction: Every minute counts.
Strategic Goal II: Provide a Safe, Productive Learning and Working Environment
Provide a physically and emotionally safe learning and work environment in support of continuous student improvement.
1. Provide on-going training for all staff and students in order to provide a safe learning and work environment.
2. Plan and implement safety and security improvements to support a safe working and learning environment.
3. Implement school-based safety improvement practices.
4. Provide high-quality, on-going, professional development for school based intervention teams to improve safety and security.
Strategic Goal III: Build and Maintain a Talented, Effective Workforce
Enhance student performance by attracting, supporting and developing a world class workforce.
1. Develop common school accountability measures and progress-reporting templates aligned to the new principal evaluation framework.
2. Implement new teacher evaluation system and the professional development plan to build understanding of the revised evaluation and to create inter-rater reliability among evaluators.
3. Expand and improve Human Resource performance and professional development for principal, certificated, and classified staff.
4. Implement new mentor program, executive coaching, and orientation program for principals.
5. Develop and implement strategic and assertive recruitment and hiring plans for certificated and classified staff.
6. Implement new employee induction program.
7. Implement work of Assignment and Transfer Taskforce.
8. Build infrastructure and processes to support innovation within schools, department, and throughout the organization.
9. Implement work of School Day Taskforce, Parent/Teacher Conference Taskforce, and Joint Calendar Taskforce to utilize existing resources to the fullest.
Strategic Goal IV: Operate Efficiently
Enhance academic quality and student outcomes through strong fiscal management, facility planning and effective governance.
1. Base Budget decisions on prioritized strategic initiatives.
2. Evaluate program effectiveness to include return on investment analysis, impact on student success and delivery of services.
3. Provide all schools with appropriate resources, materials, and supplies to support students and staff.
4. Review, evaluate and implement long range facility and technology plans.
5. Advocate for local, state, federal and private funding to support the District’s strategic goals.
6. Improve governance and system accountability.
Strategic Goal V: Ensure Public Support and Customer Satisfaction
Student learning experiences will be supported and enriched by fostering effective communication as well as purposeful internal and community partnerships.
1. Evaluate and update current communication strategy while enhancing transparency
2. Collect, evaluate and report stakeholder input for continuous improvement
3. Provide opportunities for employee involvement in work-related decisions
4. Develop and expand community partnerships
5. Provide resources to community members to ensure school readiness and parental support
6. Develop communication strategies promoting student involvement and highlighting successes
7. Coordinate, evaluate, and expand a district wide volunteer program