Bowling Green City Schools has put in place a new strategic plan to be used to help the district focus on what is needed for further development, including better communication and academic performance.
The revised plan replaces the plan that expired at the end of December.
The Education Committee approved the plan at its December meeting.
“We met many of the goals of the previous plan and added or revised new goals,” said Superintendent Francis Scruci. “This document is simply a guide that helps us focus on the work that is needed to move our district forward.”
The plan will be published on the district’s website.
The strategic plan encompasses six areas: technology, operations, human resources, communications, school funding and school performance.
The district achieved 1: 1 Chromebook availability for grades 3 through 12 and computer access in the classrooms for grades K-2 students.
Scruci commended technology director Beth Krolak for leading the district on this endeavor.
Staff continue to take technical training courses and PowerSchool has been implemented by staff, students and parents. In the future, the focus will be on cybersecurity, “as this is a huge threat to schools and businesses,” said Scruci.
Employees recently received a phishing quiz to identify malicious emails to keep ransomware and viruses out of the system.
As part of the operation, the district has achieved the goal of putting together a working group on furnishings and finances to make recommendations for new buildings.
As a goal, a replacement timetable for bus shopping was put together, which was implemented through the work of the traffic director and the treasurer, said Scruci.
The district continues to look for ways to reduce energy bills in its outdated facilities.
Another goal that was achieved was the installation of ballistic shields in the windows of the middle school cafeteria as a security measure and the installation of 3M protective glasses at all building entrances.
Other goals include installing the mini-split air conditioning units, installing new boilers and updating the security camera system in the stadium and around the middle school.
The district has implemented a competitive compensation package to both attract and retain district employees, said Scruci, whose human resources department continues to hold job fairs to attract new employees.
The aim is to increase the district’s social media presence and help identify more diverse candidate pools and create an even more competitive compensation package to hire new employees while retaining existing ones.
Another goal is to create a quarterly HR newsletter.
In the area of communication, administrators will meet again with advisory groups, also for PTOs and retirees.
Employees are encouraged to post on social media.
“It’s important that we tell our story,” said Scruci. “If we wait for others, this story will never be told.”
His Friday message returns and the superintendent / staff chats continue in each building with the aim of meeting with the building teachers on a quarterly basis.
The district is looking for alumni who can set up an association in order to maintain contact with the graduates.
A newsletter is sent out every semester.
School funding is well documented, Scruci said, but the overall goal of this part of the strategic plan is to be good stewards of public funds and to maximize state and local funds to provide excellent education.
The health costs, energy costs and procurement methods are continuously evaluated.
“Our finance department continues to look for ways to cut costs,” said Scruci.
The district’s inclusion in the state’s open checkbook system had obstacles not attributable to the district, he said.
Before the pandemic, there was growth in math and language arts, but the pandemic created some learning digressions that teachers are tirelessly working to bridge.
Bowling Green students attended classes online for almost a year in the 2020/21 school year.
Goals include closing the performance gap by improving test scores by 3% in each of the three consecutive years in math and reading.
This will be done with three levels of intervention programs, Scruci said.
One area that has been identified as a need is curriculum review.
Last year math was looked at and over the next two years science and social sciences will be checked through English / Language Arts and then electives like foreign language.
“Much of the curriculum we use is old enough to drive a car,” said Scruci.
The district will continue to offer Advanced Placement courses and College Credit Plus options.
“I’m sure if you look at the expiring plan and read it and compare it to the one we’re asking for approval tonight, you can see in the future that a lot of work is being done, there is a lot of work that is being done done and there is still a lot to do, ”said Scruci.
At the meeting it was also reported that a committee of administrators and school principals is meeting to discuss how to spend the $ 8 million available as the district will not have to worry about voters approving its taxes every five years .
“We’re looking at this carefully,” said board member Ginny Stewart. “We take a very careful look at this and think it through because we want to make sure that when we spend that $ 8 million that it is spent with a lot of thought, that our children are taken into account in every decision, our teachers in every decision . “Decision is taken into account by the community. … It will be a long, well thought-out process. “
The priorities were discussed last month and the meetings will continue this month. The results should be released in February, Stewart said.