The Lafayette Parish school system plans to begin updating the school district’s strategic plan through 2020, building off the existing “100 Percent In, 100 Percent Out” strategy created in the first months of ousted Superintendent Pat Cooper’s tenure in 2012.
Cooper’s plan was meant to guide the school system through 2018 with initiatives and goals to move the district’s state accountability rating, which was a C at the time, to an A. They are now ranked a B system.
Committees of school system employees and community members met to set goals and recommend initiatives related to all aspects of instructional programs and operations, including proposals from the classroom to the boiler room. Some of the initiatives, such as the creation of a health and wellness department, have been revamped since Cooper’s termination in late 2014.
Some recommendations, such as a program for teen parents, are still active, while others were implemented more recently, such as the phase-in of a French-only immersion campus at Myrtle Place Elementary.
Superintendent Donald Aguillard said the existing “100 Percent In, 100 Percent Out” plan will be used as a “backbone” as committees convene to conceive new goals for the school system.
The committees’ work is underway and the updated plan is expected to be delivered to the School Board in time for its Nov. 11 meeting, Aguillard said.
Four questions will drive the discussion: “Who are we as a school system? Where do we want to go? How can we get there? How will we tell if we have?”
The committee’s work will focus on four areas: noninstructional areas, such as maintenance and human resources; instructional programs; how to measure improvement; and partnerships with the community.
There’s a tight timeline to complete the revision, which will streamline the initial district turnaround plan’s format, said Joe Craig, the school system’s chief administrative officer. Craig is overseeing the strategic planning advisory team whose members are charged with leading the various committees.
“We’re not starting from scratch,” Craig said. “We’re looking at the old turnaround plan, evaluating where we are and coming up with a new vision for 2020 on where we need to go based on that original document.”
The “100 Percent In, 100 Percent Out” turnaround plan was based on hundreds of recommendations made by numerous task force groups. The current process underway is more streamlined and the plan will be written in narrative form to more clearly convey the school system’s plans and goals to the public, Craig said.
The updated document will also offer a running tally of cost estimates for projects and initiatives included in the plan.
“We’re putting dollar amounts on these projects so the district can look at the cost and so the community can see the cost associated with the vision for the next five years,” Craig said.
The update is timed with the school system’s current re-accreditation process, which involves a review by the accrediting agency, AdvancED. Site evaluators will visit the school system in February.
The strategic plan revision also comes as the School Board expects to receive an update of its 2010 master plan for facilities from consultants, CSRS Inc. at its meeting at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday.
The consultants are expected to deliver a revised priorities list of facility projects that could be used by the board if it decides to move forward with a tax initiative to fund school construction and improvements. The board is also expected to vote on whether to proceed with tax talks at its Wednesday meeting.
To view the full agenda, visit lpssonline.com and click on the board meeting calendar tab.
Follow Marsha Sills on Twitter, @Marsha_Sills.