Tuesday, October 14, 2014

VISION 2020 & Communicating Progress

In July 2014, the Somerville Board of Education revised the district Mission Statement and formulated the inaugural Core Values/Belief Statements listed below with stakeholder input through a community survey.  These Core Values/Belief Statements will serve as the framework for the development of the new district Strategic Plan 2015-20 Vision 2020.

Revised Mission Statement
Somerville Schools provide the highest quality education through an environment that promotes individual excellence.

Core Values/Beliefs
1.    We believe that children learn best in a challenging, motivating, safe, secure, nurturing, encouraging, and respectful environment that fosters a love of lifelong learning.
2.    We believe in providing learning opportunities to meet the diverse needs of each individual child.
3.    We believe that the mosaic of every child includes the fine arts, STEAM, and extracurricular activities.
4.    We believe that professional development is essential to the fabric of the teaching profession allowing teachers to build on current practices and
constantly improve instruction.
5.    We believe in a collaborative approach to learning and engagement that
includes students, district employees, parents, community members, and community partnerships.
Needs Assessment Goals for the Strategic Plan 2015-20:  Vision 2020
The needs assessment goals are to collect and analyze data in an effort to create a strategy to bridge the gap between the district’s current conditions and desired conditions.  Additional desired outcomes of the process include increasing organizational trust through stakeholder engagement, celebrating successes, and identifying new initiatives for consideration.   

Charting Course for Vision 2020
This year, as superintendent, I am meeting with stakeholders in both Somerville and Branchburg to collect information for the development of our new Vision 2020 Strategic Plan.  Please feel free to provide me with input through my “Talk with Tim” initiative by clicking on the logo below.  You can also tweet me @SchoolSup with the hashtag #Ville2020.  If you would rather meet in person, kindly contact my assistant, Joni Thorne, at (908)218-4100 to set up a convenient time to meet.

Communicating Progress
Last year, we launched the newly developed District Dashboard to keep the community apprised of progress towards the district strategic plan.  This year we are using the District Dashboard to chart progress towards each school’s WIG (Wildly Important Goal).  Annual WIGs are developed at our summer administrative workshop and provide focus areas for each building.  We were introduced to this concept through an administrative book study entitled Four Disciplines of Execution (written by McChesney, Covey, and Huling).  School WIG progress is assessed through a rubric (provided via a hyperlink from the District Dashboard).  I also conduct monthly purpose-driven walkthroughs alongside of the principal of each building.  These walkthroughs concentrate on monitoring progress towards building WIG achievement and improving classroom instruction.

We will update the District Dashboard four times throughout the course of the school year based on interim assessments (November, February, and May) and a summative evaluation (June).  You can view the District Dashboard and progress by clicking here.

As a reminder, I encourage stakeholders to logon to my YouTube channel to view various aspects of our educational programs, follow me on Twitter @SchoolSup, logon to and comment on my blog at www.drpurnell.blogspot.com, and/or download the district app Somerville PS.  I am here to serve the communities of Somerville and Branchburg, and look forward to your input into Vision 2020!

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