Strategic Plan: 2018 advance the mission: Affirm, Demonstrate, Communicate, Celebrate
Prepare our students for college and for life in a community defined by robust academics, inspiration, engagement, and care.
VALUES AND BELIEFS
We foster personal accomplishment through effort. We expect our students to care for and respect one another, to accept personal responsibility, and to behave honorably. Stewardâ€™s commitment to small class size ensures focus on each studentâ€™s talents and passions. Students are required to articulate, share, and defend their opinions while considering the views of their fellow students. We believe a diversity of talents, abilities, and cultures among our student body offers a rich and wellrounded educational experience. We value our sense of community, made possible by our commitment to a small student population.
The Steward School’s educational philosophy expresses who we were founded to be, who we are, and who we strive to become. • W hile we value and celebrate traditional academic achievement and intellectual accomplishment, we believe that each child is an individual and should be treated as such, and that this is a greater guiding principle than any linear scale.
• W e celebrate the fact that we have a student population of differing talents and abilities. • The essence of the school’s culture is rooted in the ethic of care — care for oneself, for others, for the school community, and for a cause greater than oneself.
• C ompetition exists and is important • Every child is unique. The importance at Steward, as it is in college and life. of the individual, and treating each Discovering the satisfaction that comes individual with the dignity to which he from becoming deeply and fully engaged or she is entitled, is a theme, which and knowing that you are spending life in runs very deep in the Steward mission. a meaningful way is an important life skill, regardless of whether one “wins” or “loses.” • Steward has a vigorous commitment to preparing our students for new ways of • At Steward, efforts are made to gauge thinking and innovation in the way we the appropriate level of expectation and approach issues, the ways we value each support for each student individually. other, and the ways that we relate.
â€˘ The use and integration of technology into learning is essential to student growth and development.
â€˘ Understanding and respecting differences is necessary to becoming fully educated. Genuine understanding of other cultures, their histories, and how members of different cultures think and view the world is essential to a global society.
â€˘ At Steward, balance is a core value, if not the most important element of all. To the extent we discover the individual, recognize and honor all facets of that individual, and help him or her form a self-respecting, yet meaningful and rewarding, relationship with the world, we will have succeeded. This is The Steward Way.
By 2018, Steward will be known for: Curriculum innovation which emphasizes well-reasoned, open-minded, and critical thinking when addressing personal and real-world challenges, Building connections within the greater Richmond community to enrich the school and its students and through which the school shares its innovative approaches to education, Vigilance in the management and allocation of the schoolâ€™s resources by a Board of Trustees that places diversity among its members as a continuing priority.
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Define and implement 21st century skills and learning across divisions to discover the talents and passions of our students. Establish a multi-year financial plan to strengthen the schoolâ€™s financial position and improve sustainability. Communicate the Steward culture, brand, and ethos to build community pride and school-wide engagement internally, and to establish the schoolâ€™s value to the Greater Richmond region.
Strengthen the relationship between athletics, the mission, and enrollment. Develop and enhance the governing board with diverse skills and expertise required to fulfill the strategic plan vision, goals, and mission of the school.
This plan includes both new strategic goals and a set of ongoing institutional priorities. Although we successfully addressed and “completed” the goals from our last strategic plan, Vision 2011, these were in fact goals that are and should be part of any school’s best practices and ongoing priorities. We plan to use these as continued guidelines in decision making.
PRIORITY 1: Create a truly diverse student body, faculty, and staff that will build intellectual, social, and cultural understanding. PRIORITY 2: Attract, develop, and retain the best faculty, staff, and coaches who are committed to the mission of the school. PRIORITY 3: Conduct institutional research and implement best practices based on data; develop and maintain a data dashboard for institutional advancement.
1 DEFINE AND IMPLEMENT 21ST-CENTURY SKILLS AND LEARNING ACROSS DIVISIONS TO DISCOVER THE TALENTS AND PASSIONS OF OUR STUDENTS.
RATIONALE: The school is built on the premise that
each student has something unique to offer others and has a distinct set of passions; engagement in these callings is our most meaningful pursuit. The possibilities offered by new technology and the demands in college and the workplace for strong communication, critical thinking, creativity, and the ability to innovate create the need to leverage these skills and opportunities in our school program. By offering a challenging program delivered in diverse ways, we ensure our students are prepared and engaged.
GOAL 1: OBJECTIVES Communicate the schoolâ€™s current educational philosophy to teachers, students, and parents as it relates to new education initiatives. Explore ways to maximize the resources of the Bryan Innovation Lab and incorporate the curriculum across school divisions. Enhance student engagement in core subject areas through diverse pedagogies and challenging assessments.
Implement 1:1 technology integration program across JK - 12. Establish professional development guidelines and expectations for faculty, staff, and coaches.
Encourage and facilitate collaborative planning, learning, teaching time, and spaces across divisions and buildings. Partner with guest speakers and experts-in-residence. 1.3 Utilize the curriculum maps to identify opportunities for collaboration, real world problem solving, creativity, innovation, and technology.
2 ESTABLISH A MULTI-YEAR FINANCIAL PLAN TO STRENGTHEN THE SCHOOL’S FINANCIAL POSITION AND IMPROVE SUSTAINABILITY.
RATIONALE: Sustainability is a permanent priority for
the school, however, it warrants inclusion in the strategic plan given the potential for improvement in this area. While the schoolâ€™s finances are quite stable, there are opportunities to improve sustainability by strengthening the finances and by modifying the annual budget process in a way that promotes better ongoing strategic decisions. Moreover, by making permanent changes to the budget process the school will be more deliberate in comparing expense allocations against local and comparable schools and perpetually allocating resources in a way that is consistent with both the mission and desired strategic positioning.
GOAL 2: OBJECTIVES Modify the annual budget process by creating a multi-year budget forecast that includes a strategic determination of â€œtargetâ€? levels for key revenue and expense items. Include financial statement estimates by division. Document current policies for financial aid and remission and compare to industry recommendations. Evaluate opportunities for improvement in non-tuition income sources. Create a campus master plan.
Develop goals for and conduct a capital campaign. Make a determination on the ideal student population.
3 COMMUNICATE THE STEWARD CULTURE, BRAND, AND ETHOS TO BUILD COMMUNITY PRIDE AND SCHOOL-WIDE ENGAGEMENT INTERNALLY, AND TO ESTABLISH THE SCHOOL’S VALUE TO THE GREATER RICHMOND REGION.
RATIONALE: The school is quite clear on the
significance of our mission, yet we wish to address the gaps between the values we espouse in our published materials and public presentations and those values we express in our day-to-day actions and relationships. We need to build a consistent set of messages, and we need to take pride in who we are and who we can become. The Bryan Innovation Lab offers additional opportunities for the school to actively seek partnerships in the community.
GOAL 3: OBJECTIVES
Refine mission statement. Align espoused versus expressed values. Identify and use the most effective communication tools between constituent groups and the school. Establish guidelines and expectations for personalized communication between school personnel and families.
Participate strategically in local and regional organizations in order to raise awareness of the school. Share our school narrative through individual stories. 3.3 Create additional activities to build community pride and engagement within the school. Create and enhance targeted constituent groups (examples: alumni, grandparents, trustee emeriti).
4 STRENGTHEN THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ATHLETICS, THE MISSION, AND ENROLLMENT.
RATIONALE: The school believes there should be a
balance among academics, arts, and athletics. Steward has paid a great deal of attention to our academic and arts programs over the years, and we feel it is time to look at the athletic program with an equal degree of discipline. We need to define success in athletics in a manner consistent with our ethos and mission, and we need to communicate this philosophy to students and families.
GOAL 4: OBJECTIVES Define and communicate what a â€œsuccessfulâ€? athletic program should be in a school this size and with our resources. Increase the number of current staff or faculty members serving as varsity coaches. Develop a program across all sports and divisions reflective of age-appropriate expectations, skills, character building, and winning attitudes.
Educate varsity coaches to be mentors to JV and Middle School coaches. Evaluate and develop the athletic schedule to reflect appropriate levels of challenge and competition for each team. Partner, as appropriate, with local organizations as new sources for coaching staff and training.
5 DEVELOP AND ENHANCE THE GOVERNING BOARD WITH DIVERSE SKILLS AND EXPERTISE REQUIRED TO FULFILL THE STRATEGIC PLAN VISION AND GOALS, AND MISSION OF THE SCHOOL.
RATIONALE: An educational institution will flourish
as it embraces diversity and seeks through study the values of other cultures, viewpoints, and talents. Anytime we develop a microcosm within an institution, geographic area, or other limitation, we lose resources, knowledge, and possibilities. The Board of Trustees has an obligation to lead by example.
GOAL 5: OBJECTIVES
Analyze challenges and develop strategies for increasing cultural diversity on the board. Identify a priority list of skills and use cultural identifiers as an additional tier for new board member selection. Promote the multiple viewpoints, in conjunction with the Board of Trustees, to ensure a richer experience for faculty, students, and families.
Re-examine board committee structure. Employ a system to collect and utilize data from new and current families. Examine ways to engage former trustees, potential trustees, and Foundation Board. Support and enhance governance process for communication, transparency, and evaluation.
11600 Gayton Road 804-740-3394
Richmond, Virginia 23238-3423 www.stewardschool.org
Published on May 24, 2016