Greater Victoria School District to create first-ever strategic plan

The district is looking for public input over the next month and hopes to have the draft completed by October.

What do you think the priorities of the Greater Victoria School District should be for the next five years?

That is the question the school board has posed to students, teachers and parents to help them draft its first-ever strategic plan to establish priorities for students and its multi-million dollar budget over the next three years.

“We really felt that our district needed to have a strategic plan moving forward. We have a budget of over $200 million. We’re the sixth largest organization employer in Greater Victoria and yet we didn’t have a plan as to how to move forward,”said Edith Loring-Kuhanga, board chair. “We were concerned about the changing climate of public education.”

The strategic plan will help bring the board together for a “common purpose.”

“We’ve had some challenges coming together as a board, so we hope that will help with the process, but also help us establish priorities for the school district over the next few years,” said Loring-Kuhanga.

Over the next few weeks, the board will be seeking public input through an online survey to see what they should focus on.

They have hired a planning consultant to conduct personal interviews as well.

Outgoing superintendent Sherri Bell was tasked with looking at examples and researching other school districts’ strategic plans from across the country.

“Some of the ones that I looked at were quite large and you actually have to see that there’s going to be action taken. You don’t want 15 goals with 100 actions,” said Bell. “You want something succinct so the public can look at it and see what the actions are that are going to be taken and how they relate to the goals.”

Loring-Kuhanga wouldn’t speculate on what the priorities could look like, but expects to have a draft completed by October.

“That’s why the question is so open-ended so that everybody could have an opportunity to look at it,” she said.

The survey will be online from May 1-18 and can be found at sd61.bc.ca.

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