We have discovered that a well-defined cultural identity is crucial for embedding it into the everyday workings of a school system. Similar to how the foundation of a building provides support to everything above ground, a strong identity sets the tone for everything that follows. While resetting established foundations can be a challenging and painful process, overcoming these obstacles and leveraging the community’s strengths can yield remarkable outcomes.
By articulating a clear and compelling identity that reflects the school community, we can transform the day-to-day experience for students. It enables them to participate in instruction, programs, and extracurricular activities that align with the skills they need to be prepared for life after high school. Developing a robust foundation through this work serves as an anchor for ensuring that all students receive appropriate support.
- Identify effective strategies to engage students, staff, and families based on the unique context of a school community.
- Develop a shared vision for student readiness and outcomes that connects and transforms the student experience, involving all stakeholders in the process.
- Design rituals and routines that align with the school’s shared vision for readiness and help students acquire the skills needed to transition to their next stage of learning or career.
- Define shared student outcomes that enable students, staff, and families to connect classroom and instructional practices to the school’s common purpose.
- Ensure that all students and families, including those whose voices have not traditionally been heard, are engaged in the decision-making process and can see themselves in the school’s shared vision for readiness.