Pat, Personally

Monday, October 24, 2016

Organizational Teams - Community Engagement

Whenever I talk to principals who have very successful schools or whose schools have shown tremendous improvement I often hear one consistent factor – community engagement.

Principals working together with their faculty and staff get feedback and agreement from their staff  while working cooperatively to make big decisions that will positively impact student achievement. These schools also happen to have good parent involvement.

A school community is more than just stakeholders, it’s a team and it’s only with everyone’s contribution that a school can succeed.

It is rooted in that same philosophy that all of our schools will embrace in January, 2017.  We begin the process of forming School Organizational Teams to get ready for this shift in school governance. This team will consist of teachers, support staff, parents, the principals and possibly community members.

Together, this team will make the big decisions on where to funnel resources and will decide what their priorities are for their individual and unique school community based upon data sources, including student achievement data, survey data and various other data sources.

This will not be easy, the decisions will require a huge commitment on behalf of the members to do research, deliberate responsibly and ultimately follow-through.

While many of our principals do this now, this formal process is now law, a key component of AB394 and now it’s the way CCSD does business. Information is here at:

I understand the logistics of this will not be easy, elections need to be held, processes need to be formalized and it will require compromising and commitment.

There will be moments of humility that will push teams to accept when something is not working so that they can recalibrate, members will realize there are things they don’t know and not every idea will be accepted.

However, these teams will be able to make the best decisions because they know their students best and these teams will be able to see the direct impact of their decisions.

I’ve heard of schools who increased student activities as a way to increase their graduation rate, some schools have decided to buy more computers and iPad’s for their students to help them prepare for the SBAC’s – these are the right solutions for those specific schools and students. These are the types of decisions these Organizational Teams will make.

Our team members are there, they know what works, they live it every day and they take it home. Our principals will lead the way for this transformation with the Organizational Teams by their side and together they will see improvement.

I look forward to seeing these teams take form and seeing positive results!

In an effort to keep everyone informed, CCSD has provided details about AB394 online at reorganization will focus on delivering improved services to students and families and better align resources with specific needs. This website will be regularly updated to keep you informed and so you can be engaged in this process. We look forward to your involvement!