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August 2016 UPDATE

Board of Education

Stonington Public Schools

Goals for 2016-17

By: Dr. Van Riley, Superintendent

I would like to share with you the Board of Education Goals for 2016-17. The Board discussed the goals at the July 14, 2016 Regular Board of Education meeting.

Introduction: The Board of Education meets annually to set goals for the district. At the June 22 retreat, the Board decided to adopt a new format for the annual goals. In addition to general goal statements, goals will be developed that included specific timelines and methods to measure success.

Student Success:

Student achievement and success should be the primary focus for the district and the basis for development of district goals. To that end, the following goals, timelines, and methods of evaluation have been developed for the 2016-17 school year.

  • 1)Academic Growth: At the September 8 meeting of the Board of Education, the administration will present a plan for improving student achievement across all levels. This plan will be a result of discussion and direction of the Board Teaching and Learning Committee. The plan will include baseline data, specific areas for academic growth, and a timeline for reporting back to the Board. The Board will discuss and adopt the goals for academic success/growth at that meeting.
  • 2)Wilson Certification: One of the proven ways to improve reading ability of students is through the Wilson program. As a baseline, this past year seven teachers were trained and have Level 1 Wilson Certification. The goal for 2016-17 is to have five more teachers complete the Level 1 training by June 2017. In addition, a second goal is for all seven currently certified teachers to receive the next level of training. This next level of training is the Wilson Group Instruction Training certification. This would also be accomplished by June 2017.

District Reorganization:

The second area of focus is that of organization and reorganization of the district office. With the new Director of Finance, several changes are recommended to provide better efficiencies in all areas at the district office. In particular, the need to identify responsibilities in personnel/HR has been an ongoing concern. Setting specific job responsibilities for all district level personnel, especially for business services, is a priority.

  • 1)Organization: By August 2016, a district organization chart will be established that reflects job responsibilities and provides a clear understanding of various roles.
  • 2)Job Descriptions: By August 2016, each non-administrative position at the district level will be reevaluated and new job descriptions will be developed. Once this is complete, a salary comparison with other similar/neighboring districts will be complete and new contract(s) will be developed.
  • 3)Procedures: By June 2017, a comprehensive list of district procedures and protocols will be developed. This will include, but not be limited to, business services, personnel, payroll, benefits, purchase ordering, facilities requests, and other areas.
  • 4)List of Requirements: By June 2017, the major departments (Superintendent, Business, Special Services, Instruction, Technology, Operations) will complete a 12-month tickler file of required activities for each area. This comprehensive calendar will then be updated annually.


The Board of Education is interested in promoting various programs at all levels. The district, individual schools, and individual staff members and students accomplish many wonderful things during the year. The Board would like to make sure that parents and community members are aware of these accomplishments.

  • 1)NEASC: Stonington High School will complete their NEASC accreditation in March 2017. The goal is to receive a favorable/positive report and generate a plan to meet all recommendations as presented by the review committee. This plan will be generated as soon as the specific report is received, hopefully by July 1, 2017.
  • 2)School Recognition: Each school principal will include in his/her annual goals statements assuring recognition of accomplishments of the school, staff and students. This goal will be evaluated by the Board of Education in June 2017.
  • 3)Communications Committee: The Board’s Communication Committee will develop specific measurable goals related to implementation of a new website for the district and for all schools, completion of three district newsletters by June 2017, and development of a plan for regular press releases. This plan will be shared with schools by October 2016 and will be evaluated by the Communications Committee in June 2017.

Fiscal and Environment:

The Board is interested in making improvements in the areas of long-range fiscal planning and in site maintenance and cleanliness.

  • 1)Pristine and Park-like: The district will develop summer “clean up” programs to include additional summer custodial assistance and disposal of old equipment and other items. This will occur by September 15, 2016 and will be evaluated by a report to the Board of Education by the Director of Operations.
  • 2)Long-range Planning: The Board of Education will work with the Board of Finance and Board of Selectmen to develop long-range financial plans in light of the new bonding requirements, potential loss of state funding, and the need to maintain and improve educational programs.
  • 3)Facilities Planning: The Board of Education will annually review the updated “Stonington Schools Facilities Report” related to facilities needs and use that information in formulating the operational budget and the CIP budget. The administration will update and provide the report at the November Board of Education meeting.
  • 4)Building: The district will continue to work with the K-12 Building Committee toward the goal of providing new elementary facilities that meet the educational needs of the students and staff within the confines of the approved budgets. While the responsibility for these projects lies with the K-12 Building Committee, the district understands the importance of continued involvement in the process. This goal will be measured through a report from the Board Representative to the Building Committee in February 2017 and again in June 2017.

School Climate:

Maintaining positive school climate is an important goal for the Board of Education particularly with the potential for reductions in state funding and continued unfunded mandates.

  • 1)Climate Surveys: Improved school climate will be evaluated by individual school climate surveys. The Board is looking for positive growth in all schools from parents and staff on the climate surveys. Each principal will provide specific goals related to this area that will be shared with the Board of Education in September and will be evaluated by the surveys in spring 2017.
  • 2)Climate Meetings: The Superintendent will continue the monthly PTO/Booster meetings and share the comments from the meetings with the Board of Education. In addition, the Superintendent will host meetings for association presidents related to school climate and ways to improve working conditions for all employees (example: Sick Leave Donation Program).




Stonington Public Schools:

*forward thinking

*fostering passions

*developing responsible citizens

*preparing for tomorrow’s opportunities


Stonington Public Schools – where we believe in all students. Through partnerships with family and community, we will provide an innovative and inspirational educational environment where students succeed with confidence and develop a love of life-long learning.

Teacher of the Year 2017

Mary Lou Devine

Current Announcements
The 2016-2017 school year bus route information in now available on our Families page and Transportation page. To access a direct link to the page, please click on the red title above.
Please click above for information regarding the Professional Learning on August 29 and 30, 2016.
Please click above for the agenda to the August 11, 2016 Regular Board Meeting.
The Stonington Career Incentive Committee is proud to announce the 2016- 2017 Teacher of the Year is Mary Lou Devine, Stonington High School English ".... you know the reason she comes to school each day is that she hopes that some kid is going to realize that there is value in learning or that, in spite of what their grades or people have told them, that they can learn." Congratulations, Mary Lou! ​Please click on the above link for the complete list of 2016-2017 nominees for teacher of year.

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