After nearly two years of surveys, focus groups, listening sessions, external reviews, and data analysis, the Fayette County Board of Education adopted the district’s 2017-21 Strategic Plan on Feb. 13, 2017. Then-Superintendent Manny Caulk presented the final version June 29, 2017, to various stakeholders gathered at the Embassy Suites. (See video & news release.)
Delivering on the promise of a world-class education for each and every student in Fayette County requires an uncommon commitment to putting the needs of students above all else. Every action we take and every decision we make must be grounded in doing what’s best for the more than 40,000 children we serve. With this strategic plan, we are establishing excellence as the expectation. We are clearly defining what equity means in Fayette County Public Schools and outlining the steps necessary to accomplish it. The plan reaffirms our mission, crystallizes our vision, and defines benchmarks to measure our progress. It establishes a clear picture of the characteristics and skill sets we want each graduate of our district to possess.
This plan is a landmark for our community because it identifies where we will focus efforts and resources to achieve our shared goals. For the first time in more than a decade, we will have alignment between our vision and mission by connecting our current state to our desired state. Nothing in this plan detracts from the great work currently happening. Rather, it affirms the commitment of our entire FCPS community to ensure excellence and equity for all students, and focuses efforts on our five imperatives: Excellent Student Opportunities, Excellent Staff, Excellent Schools, Excellent Supports, and Excellent Relationships.
When asked, more than 77 percent of survey respondents rated FCPS as excellent or good. In focus groups, our community expressed pride in the high-quality offerings and innovative programs available and celebrated that our students and staff rank among the best in the state and nation, regularly bringing home top honors in academic, artistic, and professional competitions. But our community also acknowledged that some children are not getting the top-notch education that others are receiving.
This plan establishes our vision for a world-class system of great schools in which every student attends a safe and inviting school where they are welcomed by caring and committed staff and engaged in challenging learning activities. Students have opportunities to build on their interests and expand their understanding of the world through multi-disciplinary experiences in the classroom and beyond. Each child receives individualized attention and encouragement as they are pushed to achieve their personal best.
Schools become places of excitement and discovery, where art, music, civic engagement, service opportunities, and world language instruction are valued as part of developing the whole child. Along the way, we monitor student progress. But testing is just a tool, not the end itself. Students learn to think creatively, solve problems, persevere, and work collaboratively as they grow as leaders and graduate prepared to change the world for the better.
We thank everyone who contributed insights and feedback so that we could provide a strong but flexible strategic plan that has clear, visible goals and an ambitious but realistic timeline. We welcome continued communication and feedback from our students, employees, families, community, business partners, government partners, and fellow citizens. We are committed to excellence. We have a moral obligation to our children to help them reach their unlimited potential. We can only do so with your continued support and involvement.
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