Ocean City Today

Worcester Co. public schools unveil five-year strategic plan

By Kara Hallissey | Oct 19, 2017

(Oct. 20, 2017) Superintendent Lou Taylor and school officials presented a new “Forward View 2022” Strategic Plan for Worcester County Public Schools during the monthly board of education meeting in Newark on Tuesday.

The new strategic plan covers the current year, through 2022.

Shortly after taking over as superintendent last October, Taylor gathered school officials together and challenged them to come up with a new strategic plan.

“Worcester 2016 was ending and we needed a new plan encompassing everyone,” Taylor said. “It is some of the most important, but daunting work.”

Taylor said he had a clear vision in mind, but wanted everyone to be a part of the process. He said he was proud of the finished product.

The goal was to have the strategic plan finalized to kick-off the 2017-2018 school year.

Around this time last year, a committee of 20-30 people was formed, including principals, teachers, nurses, assistant principals and secretaries. They reached out to the community for feedback and direction.

Next, Taylor said a vision and mission statement was created to reflect the school system.

“We changed the statements five to 10 times, trying to find the right words to drive the school system and help kids,” Taylor said.

In the new vision statement, students are empowered to become life-long learners and contribute positively to their communities. The statement says the school system strives “to cultivate a safe, student-centered, educational environment” where positive relationships are developed and students are “prepared for an ever-changing world.”

Through feedback and stakeholder input, the committee focused on four main areas: academic achievement, communication and collaboration, school safety, and organizational effectiveness.

Each of these strategic areas was scrutinized and goals were created to help accomplish them in classrooms throughout Worcester County.

In addition to creating a new strategic plan, work has begun on aligning the Professional Standards for Education Leaders (PSEL) Standards for Principal Evaluation to the Forward View 2022 strategic plan. Also, the Central Office will begin to develop departmental scorecards aligned to Forward View 2022.

“Though our strategic plan wraps it all together, we are constantly looking at data to give us a scorecard for direction,” Taylor said. “We want kids to be successful when they go out into the world.”

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