Richardson ISD board trustees said they hope the district's strategic plan, which is developed in tandem with the graduation profile, will build upon students’ individual strengths so “all will grow and graduate empowered with knowledge, life-ready skills and a vision for how to thrive.”

Engage2learn facilitator Thad Gittens, who partnered with the district to develop the plan, presented its goals and strategies during a May 18 board meeting. The purpose of the strategic plan is to define goals, develop specific results and determine actions that lead to achieving the district’s expectations, Gittens said.

The details: Gittens said the plan’s five goals were identified by the design group, which accepted feedback from nearly four dozen RISD community members. These goals include evaluating individual growth, higher staff recruitment and retention, improving curriculum and learning, increasing community engagement, and maintaining financial stewardship.

In addition to establishing goals, the plan also identifies district ideologies for future educational success:
  • Create a safe learning environment that empowers every student in RISD to take risks, be creative, find acceptance and grow.
  • Education is an effective tool that can prepare every student in RISD for life after high school, including teaching life skills.
  • Every student in RISD will have the capability and desire to learn and rise to the level of expectations for individual success.
Quote of note: “We believe if you want the type of culture that your ISD aspires to attain, you must be intentional, strategic and purposeful in its development,” Gittens said. “What we do is to help [districts] in building the culture that they're wanting to build in an effort to accomplish their goals.”

The background: In 2022, the district partnered with Engage2learn to cooperate in the process of updating the district’s strategic plan. Based in Austin, Engage2learn offers professional learning services and integrated technology solutions to cater to educators wherever they are at in their education careers. The company has partnered with other Texas school districts, including Arlington ISD and Katy ISD, as well as Cincinnati Public Schools in Ohio.

One of the first materials produced as part of the strategic planning process was a graduate profile in June 2022. The profile is a description of attributes that an educational community intends its graduates to develop through their studies to equip them for their future education or employment.

As part of the planning process, the design team has been meeting since January to establish the district’s goals as well as setting yearly benchmarks that will be part of the strategic plan. Gittens said these benchmarks will be implemented, evaluated and adjusted regularly to meet the district’s context.

What’s next: The board is scheduled to vote on the strategic plan during its June 8 regular meeting. For more information on the strategic plan, click here.