Statement: Institute instructional practices, rigorous content and data systems to measure student achievement leading college and career readiness and the development of 21st Century skills.
- Increase implementation of common core in ELA and research-supported teaching practices in mathematics
- Increase 21st century learning experiences using performance assessments, internships and presentations of learning
- Increase opportunities for students pursuing certification and career goals following graduation using online courses, new application based courses and increasing enrollment at community college or in certification programs
- Using highly effective teachers at every site to align management evaluation practices and pilot collegial instructional rounds
Statement: Create systems to recruit, hire, empower, develop and promote high performing staff members while minimizing the negative impact of underperforming staff members.
- Improve Human Resource recruitment, interview and recognition practices
- Articulate district versus site responsibility for curriculum delivery
- Provide baseline equipment and instructional materials for the transition to CCSS and SBAC
Statement: Involve stakeholders in developing and adopting a balanced budget that implements the reinvestment plan creating the greatest organizational outcomes for dollars which will be returning to our system.
- Maintain a balanced budget minus strategic spend down of excessive reserves with involvement of stakeholders
- Develop methodology for measuring return on investment for new programs and initiatives
- Establish baseline allocations for district versus site classroom expenditures
Statement: Implement the capital improvement plan and complete projects stemming from Measure H-12 revenue that improves classroom environments, sustainable energy and enhanced educational offerings.
- Design and seek DSA approval for VES Annex and THS projects
- Complete existing projects on time and within budget
- Guide final decision on Solar Project
- Integrate new employees into cohesive maintenance plan
Statement: Create and implement systems which provide regular two way communication between stakeholders and guide the decision-making and evaluation of organizational systems.
- Stakeholder engagement and LCAP development
- Common Core ramifications
- VES Annex, THS construction and solar project
- 360 communication and evaluation
The staff and I are eagerly anticipating the 2014-15 school year. After six long years of struggle related to the fiscal crisis, we are returning to better times. I am happy to report that for the second year in a row the state of California has replaced some of the funding that was stripped away from us. These replacement dollars allowed us to hire new teachers addressing many of the class size issues that surfaced over the last six years. We were able to begin rebuilding our custodial department after seeing it reduced by nearly 50% since 2008. We purchased the first installment of new technology providing over 1000 new computers/iPads. Students at each grade level can expect to experience new educational opportunities as a result of expanded access to electronic curriculum.
That being said, I want to be honest and state that there is still much more to accomplish. Effectively revising our teaching practices to match the rigor and complexity of the Common Core is a multi-year process. The new computer adaptive Smarter Balanced Assessment will provide achievement data in a manner which hasn’t been used before in any school district in the state. We should expect that there will be a learning curve as we transition to a more sophisticated and individualized assessment system. New curricular materials in math, English, science and social science have to be identified and purchased over the course of the next few years. There are significant capital expenses which must be incurred in order to replace vehicles, machines and equipment that are rapidly aging. We must conduct significant construction affecting nearly every campus in order to accommodate growth associated with our improving economy and local housing projects. Finally, we have to address the fact that our employees continue to see compensation and health benefit levels lag behind cost of living increases.
Continued community patience, involvement and support are critical as we prioritize and address these diverse needs. We suffered fiscal cuts over numerous years; it will take numerous years to arrive at levels we mutually desire. Your direct feedback regarding school district operations is highly valued. I encourage you to attend Trustee meetings and Community Forums. Specific dates, times, locations and topics will be posted on the Website which is updated as necessary. Finally, community members are needed to help develop the Local Control Accountability Plan. This document, which must be adopted by the Trustees at a public meeting, describes school district priorities and creates a three year spending plan for core and enrichment services. Please contact Cheryl Parks at 805-434-5805 if you are interested in being part of this new form of school accountability.
I am excited about where we are now but recognize that I must continue to walk the talk for many more years if we are going to arrive at the place our students deserve. Get involved and help us make 2014-15 a huge step along that path!
Joe Koski, Ed.D.,