What’s the first thing you think of when you hear strategic planning? My hunch is the phrase triggers less-than-enthusiastic emotions. Such a reaction is understandable given that strategic planning often feels like a compliance-driven task that consumes significant time and yields a dust-collecting document.
PEP’s current strategic plan concludes at the end of 2018. Realizing PEP has already significantly evolved and grown over the past two years, our Board and team sought to engage in a strategic planning process that was unconventional, active, inclusive and could ultimately harness the energy and impact PEP has generated to set us on a clear, aligned direction for the next five years. We invited Patrick Jinks, who operates as more of a coach than consultant, to facilitate and participate in our unique approach to planning PEP’s future. A process that began in August with a Board retreat has now concluded with a sharpened, refined and invigorating mission, beliefs, vision and strategic intentions for 2019-2024.
Our mission is based on five foundational beliefs:
- Public education is fundamental to a democratic, civil and prosperous society.
- Public schools are critical institutions for breaking the cycle of poverty and redressing social inequities.
- Public education is a critical lever of community prosperity and vitality.
- Education reform must be systemic and engage multiple stakeholders to be effective.
- Public engagement, community support and adequate resources are essential to the success of public education.
Over the next five years, we have three strategic intentions:
- Invest in creating conditions that position Greenville as an ideal destination for teachers.
- Leverage an advocacy point of view that supports our mission.
- Shift our capacity model to support work at the systems-level.
It is an exciting time at Public Education Partners because of our high-capacity, diverse Board of Directors, deeply talented and passionate team, and a strategic plan that sets our course. We’re already off and running in implementing our three strategic intentions, and are aligning our website, collateral materials and processes accordingly.
To position Greenville as an ideal destination for teachers, what we refer to as Teacher Town, USA, we’ve helped attract talented professionals into teaching through the Greenville Alternative Teacher Education (GATE) program.
We distributed 10,000 #Teach864 car magnets to all Greenville County educators and staff as part of our Teach864 campaign to honor and celebrate Greenville’s teachers.
In October, with the Riley Institute and Furman’s Department of Education, we organized a learning trip to Finland to study how the Finns transformed teaching into the top profession of their country, an effort that has catapulted Finland to a being a global leader in education outcomes.
Finally, we’re helping our community become more knowledgeable advocates for teachers and strong public schools through developing interactive online tools like EdsourceSC.org, and pushing for policy favorable to teacher recruitment and retention.
This is just the beginning, as we have built plans to operationalize our strategic intentions throughout 2019 and beyond. But without you, none of this is possible. Your investment of time, financial resources, and talents are what makes our mission and vision achievable. So, during this holiday season we thank you for your support and the energy you’ve infused in us and in our mission, energy that will ultimately translate to great things for all kids in Greenville’s public schools.