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District 233 board sets goals through 2024 using strategic plan

Over the next five years, the District 233 school board will be working from a set of six goals geared to continuously improve Homewood-Flossmoor High School’s educational offerings, finances and community relations.
The goals were accepted at the Jan. 15 school board meeting when the new strategic plan was accepted. Robert Madonia of RJM Consulting Services was hired in June 2018 to lead the district through the process. 
Madonia said the strategic plan is meant to change during the five-year period, 2019 to 2024, because goals will be achieved and new ones will be put in place. The plan highlights six areas selected by the school board: 
  • Academic achievement and learning.
  • Student support beyond the classroom.
  • Staff recruitment, development and retention.
  • Public relations/communications.
  • Buildings and grounds.
  • Finance.
The board surveyed students and staff, asked the community for input through online surveys and held community meetings to gather opinions on how to achieve improvements within these six focus areas. Under each specific area the board will start with two goals. 
“Those top two goals are the drivers that we first want to address,” Madonia told the board. “You want to address what’s most important right away.”

A full report on the H-F strategic plan, including the goals for each area, is on the District 233 website.

Madonia said the strategic plan will be a living document because it will be updated yearly. Once those first goals are met, the school board will move on to the next two goals under that topic. 
The nearly 100 persons who participated in discussions on the plan over two days in November prioritized the goals. The district will invite the participants back in a year to hear how the administration implemented those goals and what will be the goals for the coming year. 
Madonia said these involved community members should be considered “stakeholders” for the plan, noting: “This is not just a planning process, it’s a public relations process.”
At the end of the two-day meetings, participants were surveyed. Mandonia relayed the responses:
  • 94 percent of participants felt the two days were beneficial for creating the plan (three respondents did not).
  • 100 percent felt the six focus areas matched their expectations for importance.
  • 94 percent felt their voices were heard (three respondents were the remaining 6 percent).
  • 98 percent felt the two days met or exceeded their expectations  (one person disagreed).
Overall, Madonia said the community participants felt “it was a very productive exercise and they welcomed the engagement of it and ownership of it,” he said.

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