Front and center in the minds of board members -- as we think about district priorities, issues, and spending -- is our mission statement:
Create an innovative public school system that stimulates intellectual curiosity, providing academic rigor for each and every learner, and instills leadership, responsibility, and global citizenship in a safe and nurturing environment where learners THRIVE.
This statement was adopted in 2014 when SUSD test scores were already high; class sizes were small relative to those in nearby districts; and by many other measures, we were doing a good job for our students. Yet, this is an ambitious mission, and to fully live up to it, our district needed to do even better. Towards that end, since this mission statement was adopted, SUSD has:
- Significantly upgraded technology available to our students and teachers (we now have enough Chromebooks and iPads to be 1-to-1 in 4th through 8th grade and at least 2-to-1 for K through 3rd grade);
- Begun teaching new English language arts, math and science curricula in line with the most current California education standards;
- Added district staff dedicated to helping teachers learn the new curricula and enhance their teaching practice;
- Revamped our employee evaluation process to add accountability measures throughout our organization;
- Revitalized or started garden “life labs” and maker spaces at all four school sites (with a lot of welcome help from our PTAs);
- Conducted a thorough review of the Redwood Middle School experience and begun implementing recommendations for improvements from the task force;
- Added CASSY counseling services at Redwood to support the social-emotional well-being of students and their families.