Strategic Planning and School Improvement
At the December (2021) School Board meeting, the Arcola School District Board of Education approved the district improvement plan for the next 18 months. This plan will run from January 1, 2022 through June 30, 2023. The Arcola School District staff and school board have done a lot of planning over the past 21 months but most of that planning was related to the pandemic: from implementing remote learning; to teaching both in person and remote students; to transitioning back to a full schedule of in-person learning for all students. As a result of these new demands, school improvement planning was pushed to the sidelines for a while. But as we have been able to transition to a more normal school experience, it is time to start planning for improvements again.
Long Term Planning
The Arcola School Board and Staff engaged the entire learning community in a long-term planning process in 2017. This long-term planning process resulted in the school district vision statement and strategic goals. The vision statement and strategic goals are intended to drive the direction of the school district for a period of 5 to 7 years.
The current vision statement for the district is as follows:
The Arcola School District is to be an “innovative leader” in providing an educational experience that creates an individualized plan for each and every student.
The vision also includes three Pillars of Excellence that support the vision statement. Those pillars include excellence in “Learning, Culture and Opportunities.” All district improvement plans should be aligned to the district vision statement and pillars of excellence.
The full Vision Statement can be viewed here:
The following are the eight strategic goals for the district. They include the following:
Arcola students in Grades 8-12 will have an individualized learning plan that includes resources for making decisions on careers and postsecondary education/training; a course plan; information on financial aid; and a written post-secondary plan.
There will be an increase in the number of students in Grades 3-11 that meet state expectations in reading and math.
There will be an increase in the number of students at the end of grade 3 that will be reading at or above grade level.
The certified staff retention rate for the Arcola School District will be above 85% annually.
Arcola teachers will display high quality instruction identified in the Pillar of Excellence including standards driven, data driven, engaging, critical thinking, digital literacy, collaboration, relevancy, and rigor.
Arcola school district stakeholders will display a positive perception of the school climate in the Arcola School District.
Arcola high school will maintain a high graduation rate.
The district will maintain financial stability in order to provide a variety of high quality opportunities for students.
When we are under normal circumstances, the board of education, administrative team and various staff members work through a systematic process to develop an annual improvement plan. In this case, we have developed an 18-month plan. This is short-term planning that is aligned to the long-term planning described above. The following are the steps that are followed in this process:
Step 1: Review of school district vision statement, strategic goals, and measurable targets.
Step 2: Review and analysis of current data (demographic, student achievement, survey/perception data from all stakeholder groups)
Step 3: Based on data review, revise the district Strategic Challenges (the items that should be addressed when planning for improvement) and Strategic Advantages (the items that should be built upon when planning)
The following link will take you to the current strategic challenges and advantages for the district:
Step 4: The district leadership team then develops an annual district improvement plan (in this case, it is an 18-month plan) designed to achieve the overall strategic goals. To do this, there will be annual achievement targets aligned to the long term targets and improvement strategies that will be used to achieve the target.
Step 5: Both the elementary school and junior high/high school will then review building specific data, the district improvement plan, and then establish their building level targets and improvement strategies that align to the district strategies.
Step 6: On-Going implementation during the 2021-2022 and 2022 -2023 School Years
Step 7: Evaluation of performance on Targets at the end of 2022-2023
The following is a link to a power point that outlines the District Improvement Plan for January 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023
SCHOOL REPORT CARDS
In addition, the State Board of Illinois has published a new school report card this year. Below is the "At a Glance Report" for the Arcola District, Elementary School and High School or the 2021-2022 School Year For access to the online site for the district and building report cards, please click on this link: 2021 Report Cards
The district is also required to post information on testing required in the school district. Most testing is required by the State of Illinois. To see testing required annual click on the link below: