As we look toward the future of Austin Public Schools, it is vitally important that we develop a unified vision for where we as a district want to go and how we will measure our success along the way. That is the essence of a strategic plan.
Strategic planning involves creating and setting measurable goals. This allows us to develop action plans to help us reach those goals while also allocating district resources as needed to support what we are trying to accomplish. The plan that we develop cannot be truly successful without input from stakeholders throughout Austin, including students, staff, families, and community members.
The first step in developing our strategic plan is to determine what’s going on now, and to that end we’ve been working with TeamWorks International to help us build our roadmap for the future of APS. One element of this process is community surveys, listening sessions, and focus groups. The information gathered will be used to help us better understand both where we are as a district and what we as a community want for our students, families, and staff daily at APS.
When we have a solid understanding of our current reality, we will start working on a “Descriptive Vision for the Desired Daily Experiences (DDE)” gathered from students, families, and staff. At this point, we’ll be working with TeamWorks to determine clear metrics for measuring progress. Many of our goals will happen over the course of years, and we want to make sure that we have a way of determining if we’re hitting the marks as we go. This part of the process will start in November and go through May or June of this school year.
As you might imagine, this is a thorough and lengthy process that requires a lot of time and work from a lot of people. But the payoff for taking our time now means that we will have greater success pursuing our goals in the future. In the end, we hope to develop a plan that will help guide our decisions to support our goals and desired outcomes.
At Austin Public Schools, our mission is to engage, empower, and inspire, and the strategic plan we as a community develop will help us to accomplish that goal.