Hinz: District 47's strategic plan to empower all students

Kathy Hinz
Kathy Hinz

It’s hard to believe it’s already been one year since District 47 completed its strategic planning process. We’d like to invite the community to learn about this new plan and follow our progress. 

Facilitated by the Consortium for Educational Change (CEC), District 47’s four-month strategic planning endeavor was carried out in the fall of 2017 by a group of 44 dedicated stakeholders, including administrators, staff members, board members, parents, community members and students from Community High School District 155 who had attended D-47 schools. 

In January 2018, the District 47 Board of Education approved the strategic plan, which is guided by the district’s mission, “Empowering All Students: Learners Today – Leaders Tomorrow,” and spans five years, from the 2018-2019 school year to 2022-2023.

In addition to the mission statement, the strategic plan includes a vision statement, core values, and goals in five areas: student growth and achievement, learning environment, work environment, family and community partnerships, and resource efficiencies.

Beginning last spring and continuing this year, 10 action teams led by nearly 100 passionate individuals – school administrators and staff members with oversight by the district’s administrative team – have been developing a vision and timeline of tasks to accomplish the goals set forth by the strategic plan committee. The strategic plan goals are:​

Student Growth and Achievement 

To align and adjust curriculum and assessment to reflect rigor, relevance, and the 6Cs (critical thinking, collaboration, character, citizenship, creativity, and communication)

To meet the learning needs of all pre-k-8 students and close achievement gaps through an improved differentiated instruction, intervention and enrichment system

Learning Environment    

To assess and support the social and emotional needs of all students    

To assess and support pre-kindergarten through grade 2 early learners who are delayed in their readiness  

Work Environment    

To provide time, tools, and clear expectations to ensure effective staff collaboration    

To provide time, tools, devices, and clear expectations to integrate technology into teaching and learning    

To develop an aligned data system for making informed decisions, monitoring progress, and reporting results  

Family and Community Partnerships    

To investigate and utilize effective tools and strategies to engage families, businesses, and the community as vital partners in the learning process  

Resource Efficiencies    

To ensure equity in allocating fiscal and program resources across the District to address variances in individual school needs    

To address facility needs in a timely manner to ensure an optimal teaching and learning environment

I am grateful to CEC and our strategic planning team for giving their time, talents and efforts in helping to shape our new strategic plan. In turn, I thank the leaders and members of our action teams who are committed to carrying out our new strategic plan.

Their actions are transforming our goals from the written form to actionable, impactful experiences and events, which will allow us to achieve our mission of “Empowering All Students: Learners Today – Leaders Tomorrow.” 

While much of the work of our action teams takes place behind-the-scenes and may not be visible to the community at large, we invite all stakeholders to follow our progress via periodic updates on our website and in the District’s e-newsletter, “The Communicator,” which publishes three times a year (fall, winter and spring/summer).

You can find the Winter 2019 issue posted on the District’s website at d47.org. You can also follow our progress via the District’s social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) or by searching our hashtags: #empoweringallstudents, #D47pioneers, #D47pride and #collaboration47.

• Kathy Hinz is the superintendent of Crystal Lake-based Elementary District 47.

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