Improving communication throughout the district and managing student behavior have been two goals of Frisco ISD officials throughout the 2023-24 school year.

A mid-year update on the district’s improvement plan for the 2023-24 school year was given by Kimberly Smith, chief finance and strategy officer of FISD, during the board of trustees’ Jan. 16 meeting. The board approved the district improvement plan in September. Its purpose is to work toward improvement efforts through the school year and serves as an accountability system for the district.

As of January, the district is on track with implementing the plan’s goals, Smith said.

“There was a great deal of work that was put into ... ensuring that all 77 campuses, including our leadership team, are on board with [the improvement plan],” board President Dynette Davis said.

The backstory

The district improvement plan is made up of four goals, Smith said. These are:
  • District and campus leaders will improve communication practices to ensure consistency and clarity in information shared with families.
  • FISD’s central office will develop systems of support for educators to provide students with challenging, relevant and student-centered learning experiences.
  • Campus-based staff will equitably apply positive behavior interventions and the student code of conduct to reduce negative student behaviors and positively impact the learning environment.
  • District leadership will foster employee engagement, retention and recognition by enhancing communication channels and professional growth opportunities.
Smith went on to explain that goals are designated as major or minor changes. Minor changes are items that the district is looking at year-to-year, she said. For major changes, she said the district expects an item to take more than a year and will require a significant amount of time and resources to accomplish.

The details

Each goal in the plan is tied to action items that departments and campuses across the district can work toward throughout the year, Smith said.

For improvements in communication, the Academic Programs department created an incoming freshman parent information meeting to address questions and concerns from parents. The department is working on a similar information session for students moving from grade five to grade six, the presentation stated.

In the communications department, training sessions were conducted with all campus principals, and the department will later hold training for administrators.

For the district’s second goal, the priority was to let FISD students be agencies of their own learning, Chief Academic Officer Christy Fiori said. This is being accomplished through clearly defining expectations for instructional design, providing training on available instructional resources and differentiating professional learning experiences for staff based on needs and goals, the presentation stated.

To address managing student behavior, training on de-escalation and classroom management has been completed while behavior response protocols are being developed in the district, the presentation stated.

Opportunities for career development and expanding the teacher incentive allotment are two ways the district has approached its goal of employee engagement and retention, according to the presentation. Training has also been given to district leadership on enhancing workplace culture, the presentation stated.

One more thing

The district is still working through this year’s goals while officials will start the needs assessment process for the next school year soon, Smith said. The board will then take in feedback in April before adopting a new set of priorities for the next school year in August.

“It’s an ever-evolving cycle,” Smith said.