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Weston Schools Seek Feedback for Planning

The following is a press release sent by Lynne Ohmes.

began its second phase of district strategic planning in the fall of 2010 with the assistance of a consultant, Dr. John Starr, who has successfully facilitated this process for other districts in this region. To begin the first phase of this work, Dr. Starr requested that the district provide him with the names of 35 representative stakeholders of the district, from district employees to town residents and officials. In the fall of 2010, Dr. Starr completed individual interviews with each of these 35 people, seeking their input on the strengths and areas of growth for the district. However, at that time, this work was put on hold pending the hiring of a .

Prior to the holiday recess, the Steering Committee for strategic planning convened to review the work that emerged from the initial interviews from the previous fall. Dr. Starr facilitated the session and will continue to assist with the work of this team until the final plan is submitted for approval by the Weston Board of Education, some time before summer break.

The interviews yielded key common themes that Dr. Starr crafted into “if…then” statements as a basis for the foundational issues to be explored in the strategic planning process. These are outlined below in the proposed Theory of Action:

Weston Public Schools’ Implicit Theory of Action

1. If the trust of the community in its school system can be strengthened and community involvement in the schools can be expanded through improved two-way communication, and…

2. If Weston maintains the high quality of its faculty and staff through recruitment, professional learning, and maintaining a culture of collaboration, and…

3. If the core curriculum is continually strengthened and improving instruction through the use of student performance data and attention to rigor continues to be a high priority, and…

4. If every student is known well and continuing attention is paid to meeting student needs and insuring student security and safety, and…

5. If information technology is utilized effectively to expand teaching and learning, and systems reliability is enhanced, and…

6. If the district can sustain its emphasis on the efficient use of resources, insure the maintenance of school facilities, and engage in long-range financial planning, and…

7. If continuous improvement remains the watchword for district planning,

Then all students leaving the Weston Public Schools will possess the knowledge and skills to function as effective members of 21st century society.

In order to ensure that these community perceptions are accurate and represent the views of students, staff, public officials, and the community at-large, the district is sharing these with the entire community and seeking feedback.

You are invited to provide your feedback through various mediums:

1. Via the following link: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/NFBQWDJ to an anonymous survey tool that provides for comments. The survey will remain open until the close of business on Jan. 20.

2. There will be two open forums. The first forum will be held on Monday, Jan. 23 from 7 to 8:30 p.m., hosted by the Dr. Colleen Palmer, superintendent, and the Principal of Weston Middle School, Dr. Ken Craw. The second forum will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 24 from 9 to 10:30 a.m., hosted by Assistant Superintendent Thomas Scarice.  Both sessions will be held in the Weston Intermediate School Cafetorium.

3. Email your thoughts and ideas to WPS@westonk12-ct.org by close of business on Jan. 20.

The Weston Public Schools welcomes your critical feedback to this long-term planning process for the future of the district and thanks you in advance for your participation.

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