SPARTA, NJ – The Sparta Board of Education is seeking community member participation in the development of the District Long Range Strategic Plan. Al Annunziata, New Jersey School Boards Association Field Service Representative attended the work session meeting on Monday, August 18 to give the board members an overview of the process. It is an initiative known as 3D; Determination, Dreams and Destiny.
There will be three meetings; one each month beginning September 23 . At the first meeting in September Superintendent Dennis Tobin will give a State of the Schools address. After that those in attendance will disburse into smaller groups for parallel discussions.
“We try to have the most heterogeneous groupings possible,” said Annunziata. “That provides the opportunity for rich discussion among community members, staff and even students if they choose to attend.” Smaller break out groups also encourage a greater level of participation.
Annunziata said, “People are invited to attend all three meetings but minutes of each session can be posted online so the community can follow what is happening if they were not able to attend every session.”
According to Annunziata, board members that choose to attend will only be participating as community members, not in any official capacity.
The first meeting will cover the Strengths and Challenges of the district. At the second meeting on October 22, the topic will be Vision. For the third meeting on November 19 the groups will be discussing Goals.
The goals will be synthesized and returned to the board in January. It is anticipated that they will be discussed in public at the February meeting and approved by April so the plan can be launched beginning in July, the start of the 2015 school year.
Tobin explained, “In addition to the local media, the district will be making use of all means of communication available including Genesis email, District and Township Honeywell Alert systems and District and Township Facebook pages.” He added that “by using the township communication tools the district will be able to reach out to Sparta residents who do not have children in the schools.”
All of the meetings will be held at 7 p.m. in the Media Center of Sparta High School.