Archived Story

Public invited to help shape strategic plan for Ironton Schools

Published 10:42am Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Ironton community will soon have the opportunity to provide its thoughts on how Ironton City Schools should move forward in how their children are educated.

The Ironton City Schools Board of Education is inviting the public to participate in focus groups to help develop a strategic plan for the district at 6 p.m. Jan. 3 at the Ironton High School auditorium.

Dean Nance, Ironton City Schools superintendent, said this is a great chance for the community to be involved in the future of the next generation’s education.

“The people in the community need a way to step up and make their voices heard,” Nance said. “We are hoping a lot of people recognize this as that opportunity and come out. The meeting doesn’t do any good if the community doesn’t show up.”

After the initial presentation by the school district, school board members and administrators will leave while consultants Academic Excellence International, LLC will conduct small-group meetings to obtain input from the community. Nance said AEI was hired to hear what the community has to say and allow those who attend feel more comfortable to express any problems they may have and improvements that could be made.

“We value the parents and community,” Nance said. “Research shows people respond better to people not in charge and I want people to feel they can speak freely and openly.”

“We have a five-year plan on how to improve the school. We want assistance from parents and the community so we can work together. We can’t do it by ourselves.”

Nance said he hopes to have a large enough turnout of community members to justify future meetings to discuss the strategic plan for the improvement of Ironton schools.

Doug Franklin, AEI consultant, agreed the more who participate the better, but said it is important to keep the individual groups small.

“We like to keep the groups at around 8 to 10 people,” Franklin said. “We do this to keep an actual conversation going, instead of having one or two individuals dominate as often happens in large groups.”

The meeting will consist of a presentation followed by small group discussions focusing on school district operations, curriculum and extracurricular activities, professional development, community relations and resources and facilities.

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