In the fall of 2015, the Bethlehem Central Board of Education adopted a set of district goals to help advance the board’s mission of educating children to become thoughtful, responsible individuals and encouraging all students to reach their potential. The goals — which were in place in 2015-16 and continue in 2016-17 — are aligned to support the district’s longstanding commitment to deliver knowledge, character and value to students and to the community. They serve as a guide for policy-making decisions made by the seven-member board.
The district goals also assist administrators in focusing priorities for leadership and staff within the district. Superintendent Jody Monroe recently introduced a goal-supported “action plan” which was crafted by the district’s administrators, including all building principals, department heads, subject supervisors and district leaders.
“Over the summer, our administrative team collaborated in developing an Action Plan for 2016-17 reflecting the goals set forth by the board and strengthening our programs that serve as the vital foundation for educational and social growth for students across the district,” said Superintendent Monroe, who presented the plan at the September 7 Board of Education meeting. “The plan includes a focus on integrating technology in the classroom, fresh efforts to ensure student health and wellness, expanded real-world learning opportunities for our high schoolers, and making fiscally responsible improvements to the district’s infrastructure that provide a safe, quality learning environment for students.”
Highlights of 2016-17 District Goals & Action Plan
- Develop a comprehensive plan for technology integration and skills that prepare students for future careers and provide professional development that encourages effective use of technology in the classroom.
- Vision: The use of technology in instruction changes the structure of the classroom. Developing basic computer competencies and computational thinking skills will encourage a way of working and thinking that can help children in every aspect of their lives.
- Conduct program reviews for Special Education, Career and Technical Education, Business and Technology; begin program reviews for K-12 English Language Arts and Music.
- Vision: BC regularly reviews all programs to ensure that state standards are appropriately addressed and all students receive a high quality, engaging curriculum that meets the needs of all students.
- Assess effectiveness of K-5 Response to Intervention (RTI) program and using this data begin to explore if there are more effective interventions we can utilize at the secondary level.
- Vision: Effective early intervention will enable students to stay on grade level, eliminate learning gaps and reduce referrals for special education services.
- Begin a K-12 Healthy Schools Committee that focuses on improving students’ learning environments, student engagement and well-being and is welcoming for everyone.
- Vision: A healthier school environment that focuses on the cognitive, physical, emotional and social well being of all children K-12.
- Develop and present a capital bond project that is passed by a favorable margin.
- Vision: Bethlehem regularly maintains facilities and infrastructure that foster a safe and quality learning environment in a fiscally responsible manner.
- Work with the Chamber of Commerce, local businesses, and community members so that students are provided with increased opportunities for internships and field experiences in areas they may be interested in pursuing.
- Vision: Through trusted and valued partnerships, students will participate in a variety of relevant experiences outside of school, which will provide relevant and engaging opportunities in our community to foster career readiness, community service and cultural awareness.
- Provide district and building safety teams ongoing training on best practices of school safety to ensure we are prepared in the event of an emergency.
- Vision: To provide our students and staff with a safe environment that promotes teaching and learning.
Each item included in the action plan includes a strategy, identifies key staff roles, sets a timeline for implementation, identifies data for measuring effectiveness and outlines the vision associated with each action.
Superintendent Monroe said that while staff play an integral role in moving this action plan forward, the ultimate success of the plan will also rely on input from the community.
“Bethlehem is fortunate to have an engaged and active parent and business community,” said Monroe. “I invite anyone interested in learning more about our district initiatives or helping us meet our objectives to get involved.”
Superintendent Monroe can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 518-439-7098