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Making sure your vision includes ‘How’ and ‘Why’

Executive Summary

Council Bluffs Community School District / Council Bluffs, IA
Urban / K-12
Students: 9,100
Staff: 580

The idea:

Purpose and impact:

How it works:

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    Lessons Learned

    • If possible, hire a consultant or other neutral third party to moderate the process to ensure discussions are productive and efficient.
    • Include students in the process, too. They have insights about their schools that adults don’t. Council Bluffs Schools invited four high school students to join the planning session to provide input for the mission statement. “The superintendent and mayor had no veto power over students, so each person had one vote,” Fringer says.
    • Keep the community informed. Council Bluffs Schools shares regular updates on district improvements — new programs or a boost in test scores, for instance — via social media channels.
    • Stay accountable to the plan. Many plans are great but never get implemented. Hold departments accountable to results and ensure each one has concrete ways to measure progress.