District to Kick Off Strategic Plan on March 11
If you're interested in participating, the BOE suggests you RSVP by this coming Wednesday.
A lot of people with children move to Millburn for one specific thing – the schools.
But recently some have begun to question whether the schools are 1. As good as they used to be, and 2. How do to reach higher in economic hard times when taxpayers want relief and budgets are tight.
One answer, proponets of a strategic plan say, is to plan for the future and create a roadmap that gets you there.
“Take a stab at a true long-range plan—both a financial as well as qualitative plan. What do we want to be in five years and how do we get there?” resident Dave Graziano asked on Thursday night at the board’s budget meeting. “Look at new enhanced programs for the 21st century. Be creative. Brainstorm. Look at what innovative things schools are doing around the country.”
The Millburn Township School District’s Strategic Planning process is meant to do just that and will officially begin on Sunday, March 11, with a Community Kickoff planning session.
All community members – current and past school parents, grandparents, retirees, teachers, staff, parents, administrators and high school students are invited to provide input into the Strategic Plan that will develop a blueprint for the future of the Millburn Schools. Those who have already volunteered to participate should also plan to attend.
The kickoff will be held in the multi-purpose room at Glenwood School, 325 Taylor Road South in Short Hills, from 2 to 5 p.m. on March 11. Participation of the community in the gathering of input is a crucial factor in the development of a strong strategic plan, so it is essential that a wide cross-section of the community attend. Participants will be divided up into discussion groups facilitated by school district staff. Each group will discuss and then share their responses to the following guided questions:
- Question 1: What does it mean to be well educated in today's global society? What should our graduates understand, know and be able to do?
- Question 2: How could this inform what we do in the Millburn Township School district?
- Question 3: What issues/questions does this raise for us?
Board members say they are looking forward to hearing how those who want to be involved in the strategic planning view those questions and to see how they will answer those questions. About a month ago, the district already had more than 60 residents signed up and registration remains open.
At the community forum in January, when the strategic planning process was explained, many issues including homework and opening up AP classes to more students were brought up by parents.
And at Thursday’s budget hearing two parents said they were concerned that Millburn is resting on its laurels and they asked to board to make sure Millburn reaches beyond the status quo because Millburn students are competing with students from schools that are more forward thinking.
Board member Jean Pasternak, has pushed for a strategic plan before she got on the board last April. She has said the strategic plan will help the District reach the heights it wants to reach, while allowing the board to plan financially as well.
For planning purposes, attendees are asked to RSVP by Wed., March 7. An interactive RSVP Form is available on the website at www.millburn.org under “News.” Or participants may email an RSVP to email@example.com. Please include the names of those who plan to attend, whether they are adult and/or high school student participants, and whether they would take advantage of childcare (for children 3 or older) if available.