Strategic Plan Progress
In 2017, the Deerfield Public Schools District 109 Board of Education adopted a new strategic plan to guide the district's work for the coming years. We are happy to use this page to update the community on the administration's progress toward achieving the goals and objectives laid out by the Board and community. Each objective will be updated at least three times annually in September, January, and June.
You can also find our strategic plan progress and information about our schools on ECRA's Strategic Dashboard.
Objective 1.1 - Determine and address each student's unique learning needs, interests and strengths.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - District 109 engages in a variety of methods to determine and address each student’s unique learning needs, interests, and strengths. We have partnerships with a variety of digital resources (such as Freckle, Ten Marks, etc.) that allow our students to engage in personalized and/or individualized learning activities.
In addition, we conduct an annual student engagement survey to gather data on how our students are perceiving their school and their learning environment. This year District 109 has also joined the Personalized Learning Cohort through the American Association of School Administrators in order to begin a collaboration with other leaders and districts throughout the nation on personalized learning.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - We have provided and conducted a plethora of professional development opportunities to support personalized learning in our classrooms. Marcia Kish, a personalized learning expert, has spent considerable time with our instructional coaches, curriculum specialists, and many of our teachers providing the training necessary to support blended learning environments. Freckle, an individualized learning platform, has also proven to be an effective digital tool to support individual student needs. Student, staff, and parent input has also been collected and the data utilized in making informed instructional decisions on behalf of our students.
Additionally, we have partnered with the District Management Group to conduct a program review of our RtI system and our middle school encore classes. We have conducted in-person interviews, collected survey data, and conducted an academic return on our investments of these programs. Staff, student (current and alumni), and parent feedback
Objective 1.2 - Optimize academic growth of each student
Update as of September 1, 2018 - District 109 conducts the NWEA MAP assessments in math and English-language arts (ELA) three times a year, and science once a year. Data gleaned from this assessment provides up-to-date information on each student’s math, reading, and science achievement in order for District 109 teachers and staff to optimize the academic growth of each student. We also partner with ECRA Group, which provides staff with growth information that helps us determine the extent to which our students are growing as compared to a projection that is calculated based on individual student’s previous data.
This year we have also implemented advanced learning opportunities for all 3rd-grade students with an eye toward moving this up for the fourth and fifth grade in the coming year. In addition, we have provided more access to advanced math classes for students in grades 6-8.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - We will be goal setting with our students between now and February to review MAP assessment results with each of our students individually. It is of great importance to District 109 that our students have an understanding of where they are in the learning journey and have goals set to work on continuously improving.
Objective 1.3 - Work Together with families and staff to address the social-emotional learning needs of each student.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - During the 2017-2018 school year the District 109 Social Emotional Learning Committee (comprised of parents, teachers, administrators
anda board member) met monthly to evaluate the current social-emotional learning initiatives in place in the District and also to identify potential new resources for implementation beginning in the 2018-2019 school year. Based on focus group data and feedback from student surveys, the committee also outlined key topics for parent/community workshops for the 18-19 school year. The District will partner with PPS (Parents and Professionals for Success) and other community organizations in order to provide these workshops and parent presentations. The first parent workshop was on September 24th at Walden (in partnership with PPS) and focused on executive functioning.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - As part of our ongoing effort to collect data on the social-emotional needs of our students, we are taking a closer look at the results of both our Parent and Student Engagement Surveys. Reviewing the responses in the different dimensions included in the surveys will help us to identify additional areas of need for our buildings as well as to streamline ideas for social-emotional learning workshop offerings for parents and the community at large.
The Wilmot Elementary School staff recently completed a book study of The Leader in Me. As more schools in our District are exploring the option of implementing The Leader in Me, we are working towards a full District-level implementation.
We continue to prioritize providing quality parent education related to social-emotional learning and, in partnership with PPS, will be hosting two parent evenings in February. Paula Kluth will be speaking about inclusive practices and how promoting inclusivity benefits all students. We will also be hosting a parent evening focused on the Facilitated IEP process and how parents can meaningfully participate in a team-based discussion about their child’s needs. The middle school administration is also partnering with Community - The Anti-Drug (CTAD) to host a parent event addressing the rising numbers of middle school students who are vaping.
Objective 1.4 - Ensure a consistent and balanced assessment system to support the Portrait of a Graduate.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - We continue to participate in the state PARCC assessment and also use tools such as NWEA Map and local assessments to paint a full picture of students performance. Last year we added in the PSAT as a new assessment for our 8th-grade students. This allows our students entering high school to have an idea of where they are at in progress toward college and career readiness as measured by the SAT.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - We will be participating in the new state assessment, the Illinois Readiness Assessment, this spring. Winter MAP testing is occurring between December 5th - 21st. PSAT scores will be available to our
8th gradestudents and families the week of December 10th.
Objective 1.5 - Ensure a consistent grading and reporting system that provides clear and meaningful feedback on student progress.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - The district continues to lead the way in the implementation of standards-based learning and reporting. All grade levels K-8 have updated their progress reports to be more in line with the Common Core State Standards. In addition, we are now implementing students self-assessment tools such as Seesaw which allows students to post and share their work.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - Trimester reports for the elementry schools and quarterly reports for the middle schools have gone to all families. Middle school staff have been participating in visits to Stevenson High School and the Department for Teaching, Learning, and Innovation is discussing with teachers common expectations for meeting standards in a particular subject or concept.
Objective 1.6 - Increase parent-teacher communication about each student's educational progress.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - District 109 prides itself on the level of transparency with our parent community over our students' growth and achievement. We share MAP and PARCC assessment results after each administration. We also have a partnership with Seesaw, an online digital tool that allows teachers and students to share schoolwork, providing parents with a window into the child’s day. Parents can leave comments, words of encouragement, and feedback to their child, which helps us promote a growth mindset and model digital citizenship. As of this year, we are also implementing Seesaw at the 6-8 level in addition to our elementary schools. Additionally, we continue to report progress quarterly at the middle schools and tri-annually at the elementary schools. Parent-teacher/student-led conferences are held in November and April.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - Our use of Seesaw, a family communication
andstudent digital portfolio tool, has increased significantly at our middle schools and has remained the main source of information for parents at our elementary schools. We have “posted” upwards of 60,000 times over the course of one calendar year, each of which provideparents with information about their child’s growth and development.
We also altered the elementary progress reports and provided this document to help our parent community best understand the standards by which their children are assessed.
Objective 2.1 - Establish and communicate clear learning standards in every classroom as the expectation for each student and the limit for no student.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - District 109 continues to improve upon the expectation that we establish and communicate clear learning standards in every classroom as the expectation for each student and the limit for no student. Beginning with the 2018-19 school year, Curriculum Specialists in the areas of ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies, and Innovation will oversee a review of the existing curriculum scope and sequence for learning areas. In addition, we have transitioned our accelerated programming in the elementary to be accessed by more students under the new Advanced Learning Initiatives.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - Each building principal has been promoting the Professional Learning Community (PLC)
model. District job-alike PLC meetings have taken place monthly at the middle schools and quarterly at the elementary level, at which we commit ourselves to conversations around curriculum, common assessment, and student data. Additionally, curriculum specialists and instructional coaches at each elementary building continue to support this objective on a day to day basis.
Objective 2.2 - Provide full support for successful implementation of new initiatives that improve learning.
Updates as of September 1, 2018 - In 2017-18, educational consultants worked with District 109 staff to support our standards-based learning environments and reporting procedures. The district also invested
intoonsite building-based training in nearly all of our digital tools and resources. The district surveyed staff after every training during the 17-18 school year and feedback from staff on the increase in building based professional development was extremely positive. Onsite training for the 18-19 school year will include training from Google, Apple, , Freckle, Fastbridge, Co-teaching, blended learning, Northwestern Center for Talent Development, Leader in Me, as well as other programs. Ecra
Update as of December 1, 2018 - All staff, PreK-8, has been involved in professional learning, outlined in the update given in September. Survey feedback received from the staff was positive (85% agree or strongly agree that the new learning has had a direct impact on their practices). Specifically, many of our teachers got the opportunity to participate in the Chicago Literacy Learning Labs, at which teachers reported outstanding impact and benefit.
Objective 2.3 - Integrate current and emerging technologies to enhance pedagogy and student learning.
Updates as of September 1, 2018 - In March, the Board of Education approved the purchase of new one-to-one devices for all students in grades 2-8. The new device is the Lenovo 500e and as of now, it has been rolled out to students and staff. The Lenovo 500e allows students the benefit of a convertible Chromebook that functions as a traditional laptop and also a tablet. The touchscreen and stylus technology allows students the freedom to access the device how they feel most comfortable. In addition, this summer all classrooms were upgraded to Apple TV projection devices and newly updated iMacs were placed in all district Smartlabs.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - New Chromebooks were provided to 2nd through
8th gradestudents. Approximately 40 Chrome Apps/Extensions and 27 Android apps have been vetted and made available for students to install as needed. We have implemented a plan for more efficient 1:1 device support for students, Learning Common staff, and teachers. AppleTVs were installed in every classroom. The network changes are in progress to improve the user experience and follow the latest best practices for implementation).
Objective 2.4 - Evaluate at least two District programs annually, developing and implementing a plan to address any areas needing improvement.
Updates as of September 1, 2018 - During the 2017-18 school year, District 109 successfully evaluated our gifted and accelerated learning programming as well as our world language programming. These program evaluations resulted in greater access to advanced learning opportunities for more students as dictated by our students' performance. In addition, the program evaluation in world language resulted in the addition of Hebrew and Mandarin to our list of language offerings at our middle school.
Updates as of December 1, 2018 - At the December 10th Board Meeting DMGroup and the administration presented findings from our program reviews of RtI (Response to Intervention) as well as Middle School Encore offerings. Recommendations will be coming to the Board in January for consideration.
Objective 2.5 - Increase experiential learning opportunities for each student.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - Student engagement survey results indicate to school administrators and staff that student choice and relevance in our instruction is a priority. With this said, we plan to review current opportunities relating to experiential learning, such as:
- Project Based Learning
- Blended Learning
- School/community partnerships
- Service learning
Update as of December 1, 2018 - In addition to the commitment to blended and personalized learning, we have also incorporated a STEAM class at each of our K-5 buildings. We believe the innovative experiences have benefited our students.
Students in 6th grade, currently enrolled in an social-emotional learning (SEL) class, will begin a mixINCedu opportunity in which they will participate in an entrepreneurship experience from a philanthropic standpoint. We will be soliciting mentors from our community to assist in this endeavor.
Objective 2.6 - Provide relevant professional learning, which targets the needs of each staff member.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - In 2018-19, to build upon the quality work mentioned in objective 2.2, District 109 has put together an elaborate professional development plan to continue supporting new initiatives and other district objectives. The professional development opportunities begin in July and continue through the course of the school year. This summer alone, District 109 staff participated in over 1,200 hours of curriculum work and professional development.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - Our professional development plan unfolded as expected. We provided hundreds of hours of in-service opportunities across all grade levels and roles. We are currently planning a Teaching and Learning Conference for our February 19th teacher institute day. Teachers at that conference will get the opportunity to choose relevant sessions to attend that apply to their work and meet our object of continuous improvement.
Objective 3.1 - Provide a positive and safe environment.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - Goal 3 indicates the district shall provide a positive and safe environment. In 2017, the district completed a comprehensive site security audit, revised crisis response procedures to reflect National Incident Management System best practices, and revised visitor management procedures for large events. The district provides ongoing training and support to building occupants to ensure readiness to implement crisis procedures. The District Safety Committee - comprised of administrators, teachers, support staff, parents, students, and a Board of Education member - meets three times annually to review site safety and security.
The district continues to invest in flexible, student-friendly furniture. By the fall of 2018, all classrooms serving students in grades K, 1, 6, 7, and 8 will have been redesigned and provided new furniture. In addition to the furniture, renovations on the middle school learning commons were completed this summer to create a more inviting and comfortable space for students to work and learn.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - In February of 2019, the Board will be presented with a proposal to outfit 2 - 5 classrooms with new furniture.
Objective 3.2 - Attract, develop, and retain high quality staff.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - The current focus
isrecruiting viable candidates through our branding and marketing strategies. We have dramatically increased our footprint in social media through Instagram (@DPS109HR), Facebook (@DPS109), and Twitter (@DPS109).
Moreover, another focus is the introduction of digital interviews. We have successfully introduced the digital interview platform to expedite the hiring process and allow for more input from stakeholders while at the same time introducing more performance-based interview components at the building level because time has been reallocated to candidates to engage and demonstrate their skill set.
The district continues its partnership with
Ventures that provides us with tools for screening prospective employees to ensure we attract the high-quality talent we seek. HumaneX
Update as of December 1, 2018 - The Human Resources Department has begun sending out a special newsletter for our guest teachers entitled Guest Teacher News. The district wants to make sure we are keeping all of our guest teachers updated about important things going on in the district.
Objective 3.3 - Evaluate the return on investment of expenditures on educational programs and facility improvements.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - Academic Return on Investment (ROI) calculation has been completed for the TAP/gifted learning and Modern Language programs. Other programs will follow soon.
District 109 will continue to evaluate the return on investment of expenditures on education programs and facility improvements.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - The December Board meeting will include Academic ROI on two more programs, namely RtI and Middle School Encore programming.
Objective 3.4 - Ensure the long-term facilities plan supports learning.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - In July of 2018, the Board of Education approved a new 5-year master facility plan for the school district. The plan calls for the district to set aside $3,000,000 dollars for possible future classroom construction. In addition, the plan calls for the exploration of remodeled and new auditorium space at both Caruso and Shepard Middle Schools.
Objective 3.5 - Provide targeted, relevant and transparent communication to all stakeholders.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - District 109 is creating communication guidelines which will outline when and where information will be communicated. The communication guidelines will be shared out on the website once they are complete.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - The communication guidelines are complete and shared on our district’s website.
Objective 3.6 - Build partnerships with the community to support and enhance student learning.
Update as of September 1, 2018 - The district belongs to various local and community organizations such as the Deerfield Rotary Club, the Optimist Club, and the Chamber of Commerce. The district regularly attends meetings with local organizations and always looks for partnerships. The park district has made a financial commitment to help share in the cost of remodeled auditorium space at our middle schools. The district is pursuing possible corporate partnerships to support student learning.
Update as of December 1, 2018 - The district continues to participate and attend meetings for various local and community organizations including Rotary, the Optimist Club, and the Deerfield Chamber of Commerce.