By Dr. Elaine Kanas
Four years ago our East Williston School District community embarked on a five-year strategic planning initiative where the community defined key priorities to guide our planning and allocation of resources. We are currently in the third year of implementation. Periodically, I update the community in my newsletters, and at Board of Education Meetings and Work Sessions, on our progress toward our Strategic Plan Goals. A primary priority identified by the community was building our STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) offerings. As a result, we introduced a four-year engineering sequence, Project Lead the Way. We are right on schedule with our Strategic Plan implementation, which had the District, in Year 1, exploring Engineering programs to adopt. Year 2 introduced a foundational Engineering course to our ninth graders, Introduction to Engineering Design. Now, in Year 3 of our Strategic Plan implementation, students have the opportunity to take a second-year course in the sequence, either Civil Engineering and Architecture or Computer Science and Engineering. Our engineering students who are currently taking Civil Engineering and Architecture will take Computer Science and Engineering next year as their third-year course in the sequence and vice versa. Some students enrolled in the Computer Science and Engineering Course are part of a Computer Science Sequence rather than an Engineering sequence. In that case, they will move on to AP Computer Science next year, as another implementation aspect of our Strategic Plan. To view the Five-Year Strategic Plan go to the district website at www.ewsdonline.org > click on Our District tab on the red horizontal navigation bar > click on Strategic Planning Initiative > click on Strategic Planning Initiative 2013 – 2018 – Revised by BOE on June 15, 2015.
We are meeting another Year 3 goal with the full implementation of the grade 8 Lego Robotics course at Wheatley and the addition of a LEGO Robotics Club at Willets Road. North Side’s LEGO Robotics Club will begin this winter.
Board of Education Goals
In addition to our Strategic Plan Goals and our yearly instructional goals, the Board of Education sets its yearly goals. The 2015-16 Board of Education Goals are as follows:
• Continue Board professional development in the area of staffing in relation to changing New York State requirements, APPR legislation, contract and certification requirements as it relates to student need
• Continue alignment of district resources to effectively support personnel and academic functions, within present budget parameters
• Continue policy review process and follow up on recommendations from the New York State School Boards policy review service
• Continue to maintain facilities and work toward the development of the next Five Year Facilities Plan
• Continue to move forward with challenging academic opportunities (including STEAM) for all students