D11 Monthly Insights

A School District 11 Communications Publication

March 2019

  • Superintendent's Top of Mind: Planning
  • 2017 MLO Update: Overall Update to Date
  • Student Spotlight: Kristian Smith
  • Invitation to April's World Cafes for Strategic Plan Input
  • Energy and Sustainability in D11
  • Making the Most of the Moment: School Social Worker Month

Superintendent's Top of Mind: Planning

A great mentor of mine used to say, “You must live your life by design, not from crisis to crisis.” This is clearly much easier said than done; however, the importance of planning is a key ingredient to success. Whether you are planning as an individual, for your family, or for an entire community, moving ahead with a strategic plan will be a useful tool.


In District 11, we are modeling what it will take to develop a comprehensive strategic plan that will successfully guide us into the future. After extensive engagement with our community, students, and staff, we assembled a Core Planning Team comprised of about 30 individuals from diverse backgrounds to recommend a new set of core values, a vision, a mission, and a set of strategies that will guide the future of District 11. This information was recently shared with our Board of Education during a work session, where they too, offered critical perspectives and feedback. We have multiple design teams that will develop action steps aligned to each strategic area, which will include ways we will measure our progress and effectiveness.


In April, I will be sharing this information with our community through an abbreviated World Café model to get additional feedback. Please see the information below to choose a World Café that will work for you to attend. The information gathered in April will then be shared with the Core Planning Team in early May, so they can incorporate additional feedback gained from various stakeholders. The plan will ultimately come before the Board for a vote to be active July 1, 2019 as we officially begin a new calendar year in the District.


This plan will allow us to lead by design and be intentional about our practices. I am excited to be a part of this process and believe the community will have a strategic direction for years to come that will prioritize our work and our success!

April World Cafes for Strategic Plan

Strategic planning in school district 11 is well underway. Feedback has been gathered and the Core Planning Team has created a draft plan. It's your turn to hear about the draft plan and give your thoughts! Everyone is welcome to attend any of the April world cafes listed below. As always, please click here for regular updates on the strategic planning process.
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2017 MLO Update: Overall Update to Date

We are thankful for the voters who supported the 2017 3E ballot initiative, providing School District 11 with critically necessary funds. The 2017 School District 11 mill levy override (MLO) phases in over six years and is currently in year two. Here is an update on how the 2017 MLO funds are being used.

Comprehensive Support Model

This proposal addresses student needs with the implementation of a coordinated program of professionals and resources. The purpose is to implement comprehensive school counseling programs and the development of student coordinated teams to address individual and school-based barriers to student achievement. Staff additions will be new to the elementary schools and augment what is currently in place for the middle and high schools. This item has been partially implemented with the majority of expenses related to the addition of many counselors.

Compensation

Pay raises for teachers and educational support staff in were implemented in two phases. The first installment was paid in the spring of 2018, and the second was paid in the fall of 2018, with the new school year.

School Security

Additional School Resource Officers (SROs) at the middle school level will begin to be implemented in the 2019-2020 school year.

Class Size Reduction

This item phases in and will eventually pay for 25 additional teachers to address class size “hot spots” and program needs.

Technology Replacement Plan

This item will be used to pay for technology infrastructure replacement across the District. The first two year’s allocation of $2 million is being used to implement a new telephone/communications system district-wide. Future technology replacements will include such thinkgs as servers, desktops, laptops, networking.

Technology Support Staff

This item funds four additional support staff to help maintain all of the new technology infrastructure.

Capital Renewal/Replacement

The Capital Renewal/Replacement item will fund approximately $17 million a year in capital projects, plus an additional $1.4 million in projects recently approved by the Board. This item phases in over six years. The District currently has a $700 million backlog of capital needs, so it will take time to catch up.

Charter School Funding

As required by State statutes, this item gives a share of MLO funds to the charter schools.

Bond Debt Reduction

This allows the District to take the difference between the full 2017 MLO amount of $42 million and place that money into a bond redemption reserve fund, which will allow D11 to significantly pay off old outstanding debt. The advantage for this is D11 might be able to pursue a low/no cost bond issue to accelerate our capital program at some point in the future.

Accountability Measures:

· Separate MLO accounting fund

· Detailed spending plan addressing individual line items

· Board-approved governance plan that restricts transfer of funds away from voter-approved items

· Regular performance review by an outside firm

· Citizen’s Oversight Committee

· District of Distinction award for accountability in MLO plans

Student Spotlight: Kristian Smith

This month's student spotlight highlights Mitchell High School senior, Kristian Smith. Kristian's nominator says, "Kristian is kind and inclusive of all people. He works hard to help others and himself, and he always finds a way to make anyone around him feel welcome. Not only does he contribute, but he leads the family atmosphere and core values at Mitchell High School. He exemplifies what we strive to see in our students!" Thank you for your leadership, Kristian!

Energy & Sustainability in D11

School District 11 is committed to reducing energy use, electrical consumption, and increase sustainability. The infographic below demonstrates the efforts being made by the District. For more information on D11's energy and sustainability work, click here.
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Making the Most of the Moment: School Social Worker Month

https://youtu.be/21qV2K0ltWk