KSD’s Strategic Plan this year has four components. How does Emerald Park contribute toward reaching these goals at our school?
Preparing Students to be Global Citizens
A quality education is the number one way for students to be prepared for the world they will inherit. The includes acquiring skills in academics such as reading, social studies, math, and science, but it also includes being proficient in self-regulation, problem solving, critical thinking and empathy. We use Second Step social/emotional curriculum, restorative practices in discipline, digital learning lessons, and provide opportunities for student voice to prepare our young scholars.
Expanding Student, Family, and Community Partnerships
The pandemic years altered school operations and human interactions. In some ways, we grew closer as a community because we had to innovate and look out for each other’s safety like never before. In other ways, there were challenges to staying connected and limits to coming together. We learned from this experience and now work to reestablish, but also renovate our traditions. We are committed to seeking greater EP family input to help us understand how we can best partner in meeting the needs of students. Look out for a parent survey begin created by our Family Engagement Committee. Our goal is 50% of our students families completing the survey. This information to help us plan for the 2024-25 school year. The survey will be digital with an option to view it in multiple languages.
Building Equitable Systems and School Environments
Emerald Park is joining with all of KSD to change how students are taught to read. This targets the heart of inequity that can change graduation pathways and outcomes. Our staff has focused our reading intervention using a system that is equity based for two years, but now we have an ELA curriculum that supports aligns to it. We are also looking at more reliable discipline to call out inconsistencies or disproportionality in responses to student behavior. Finally, we have equity leads on every committee whose job is to bring to light equity in processes that we build and rebuild in everything from safety to teacher training, to celebrations.
Cultivating Inclusive Cultures and Diverse Communities
This year we added an Inclusive Education Support Center program to the school. The addition of this special education program was a great opportunity for us to practice and discuss inclusion on many levels. Our demographics continue to shift and creating a safe, inclusive space to celebrate all the strengths of diversity is a core value. An example of this is even with a decrease in population due to the placement of sixth grade in middle school, 38% of our population are multilingual learners. This means a 10% increase in multilingual Navigator scholars in ten years. What that looks like is more to learn, more to celebrate, and more importance on family engagement.
We look forward to reviewing your input on the EP Family Survey coming your way. I am exceedingly proud to lead this wonderful school and look forward to celebrating 25 years of Emerald Park next year. Our Navigators have so much to offer and together we will help them reach their goals.