School district leaders can ensure success by focusing on core goals that match their long-term vision: which means setting both short-term goals (think one school year) and long-term objectives that may take a few years to reach.
Consider more than academic performance: how can students grow socially and build confidence? A curriculum that offers accelerated learning programs and additional learning support is crucial to supporting all students. This also means providing extracurricular opportunities for students that are diverse and financially inclusive, so that every family feels empowered by their district.
To help reach future-focused goals, school district leaders should work with their Board of Education to find impactful partnerships for their district. For example; Indian Hills, the top-ranked school district in Ohio, is currently working with the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center to provide educational resources for students. In addition, the hospital also provides Indian Hills students with free access to an on-campus therapist, helping address mental health issues in their student community.
Mental health support resources are also available to schools through organizations like MindPeace. MindPeace matches at-risk students with independently licensed social workers and psychologists to help with learning or social challenges, offering personalized support and guidance.
Encouraging your board to explore these types of partnerships can help keep your student community strong and supportive, a big part of having a future-focused district.
Outside of the classroom, school districts can help nurture students’ interests through a strong offering of extracurricular programs. International competitions, like DECA, YoungArts, and the Science Olympiad offer students the opportunity to develop their confidence and interest in subjects outside of the regular curriculum.
Support from district leaders and program directors is critical to the success of these offerings. Encourage both your School Board and Administrators to develop these organizations for the strongest results.
Being future-focused means prioritizing and empowering students by creating a personalized, collaborative, and inclusive learning environment. This is done through deliberate goal setting, resource partners, and support for extracurricular programs.
If done right, these can make all the difference for both your students and the district.