The Saskatchewan Rivers School Division board of education provided final approval for their four-year Strategic Plan covering the years 2021-2024 at their regular meeting on Monday.
The division developed the plan over the previous year with input from staff, students and families as well as community organizations.
The challenges caused by the global pandemic limited the depth of collaboration. Director of education Robert Bratvold said they had to use some new methods to make it work.
“We did some proxies and some alternative methods. It really did have an opportunity for people to weigh in and that was a good thing,” Bratvold said.
“The way I would describe this is our strategic plan is built from the foundation of statements of the board beliefs and values. It sets direction in five priority areas that are equally important and provides an opportunity for everybody in the division to see themselves reflected in that and take a piece of it and turn it into reality,” he added.
Bratvold said the many months of conversations, discussions and debates have produced an easy-to-read plan that represents inclusion and collaboration where every student, staff and community member can see themselves and their educational goals reflected.
According to a press release, the Strategic plan reflects the core values, mission and vision of the board, while setting direction for the future. It also responds to the current needs and looks to the post-pandemic future of the school division
One important aspect is that it established five equivalent and aspirational priorities:
These are learning and innovation, mental Health and well-being, inclusion and Cultural responsiveness, citizenship and relationships and governance and leadership. There is also a focus on trying to innovate.
“If you are an educational organization obviously you are going to have things with learning, you are going to have things about citizenship, you are going to have things about inclusion. So those are in the plan, I think we have taken a step forward from our previous plan. It is a little more aspirational, focusing on some innovation, focusing on some other new things so that’s an exciting opportunity,” he said.
It also provides the framework for the Board’s specific, measurable goals and the structure to monitor progress.
Students, staff and schools will see their current work included within the plan and will see opportunities for new future directions.
“The board sets the direction and they set that direction based on their mission and their vision and their core values, and they have set that direction with input from lots of stakeholders,” Bratvold said. “They set the direction, here are those priorities, and that’s a great sense of clarity and direction.”
The release stated that trustees are excited and confident in the meaningful work staff, families and educational partners will do together as they make this plan come alive in schools and communities across the division.
“It allows us as staff and students and and families and communities to take a look at that and say ‘this really resonates with me, I can work really hard with this and address some of those other pieces and that inclusive kind of idea,” Bratvold said.
He added that there were many opportunities for stakeholders in terms of direction in the document.