The School District of Palm Beach County has made its five-year strategic plan its top priority, presenting the vision at the Educational Forecast 2016 event in early March.
That event was conducted by the Education Foundation of Palm Beach County and the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County.
The plan, presented by Superintendent Robert M. Avossa, Ed.D., is unanimously backed by the School Board. It was developed after months of gathering input from community members, teachers, administrators, parents and students, including a public review during a February workshop meeting of the Board.
“Developing this strategic plan for our school district has been my top priority since I arrived in Palm Beach County, but we can’t make this plan in isolation. It takes the entire community to make this plan succeed,” Avossa said. “These partnerships are crucial as we begin the hard work of making this strategic plan a reality for our schools and our students.”
The Education Foundation of Palm Beach County is the philanthropic arm of the District, founded in 1984 to provide innovative programs that promote academic achievement and excellence in Palm Beach County’s public schools. Education Forecast 2016 is the Education Foundation’s annual fundraiser, which allows them to continue to support innovation in public education.
Avossa served as the keynote speaker for the event, funded through sponsorships to the Education Foundation, as well as private donors including the Mary and Robert Pew Public Education Fund, Johnson Scholarship Foundation and the United Way of Palm Beach County, who support the District’s strategic plan. In addition to featuring the strategic plan, Education Forecast 2016 honored two outstanding alumni of Palm Beach County schools — Daniel Cane, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Modernizing Medicine, and Ethel Isaacs Williams, Director of Corporate Engagement, Diversity and Inclusion for NextEra Energy.
“These alumni are outstanding community leaders who serve as an inspiration to our students and exemplify the type of partnerships we are encouraging throughout the county,” said Christina Lambert, CEO of the Education Foundation of Palm Beach County. “We look forward to sharing Dr. Avossa’s vision for our schools with the philanthropic community, which is critical to our students’ success.”
The Education Foundation will also host The Glades Education Forecast 2016 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. March 29 at the Dolly Hand Cultural Arts Center in Belle Glade. Avossa will present the strategic plan to community and education leaders, and honor the efforts of the Tri-Cities Education Committee, which includes Pahokee City Commissioner Allie Biggs, Mary Evans of Belle Glade, former Pahokee High School administrator and coach Eddie Rhodes, and Belle Glade Mayor Steve B. Wilson.
Additional community meetings are scheduled from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 8 at William T. Dwyer High School in Palm Beach Gardens; Tuesday, March 15 at John I. Leonard High School in Greenacres; Thursday, March 17 at Olympic Heights High School in Boca Raton; and Monday, March 28 at Royal Palm Beach High School in Royal Palm Beach.
The strategic plan will be implemented over a three-year period, and focuses on four major goals:
Increase reading on grade level by third grade
Ensure high school readiness, including academic achievement, behavior and engagement
Increase the high school graduation rate
Foster post-graduate success, including high school scholars, dual-enrollment degrees, industry certifications, college enrollment and military enlistment
Teams of District employees are already working to implement the first phase of strategic initiatives, which can be found on the plan’s website, www.palmbeachschools.org/strategicplan.