From the Desk of the Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Peter Giarrizzo
Matching Our Actions to Our Values(SVO Graphic in a PDF Click Here) Dear North Shore Community,
The first 2017-18 District Goal adopted by our Board emphasizes broadening opportunities for all of our students to engage in deep, meaningful, systemic, experiential, and authentic learning as defined in the North Shore School District’sShared Valued Outcomes (SVOs). As I mentioned, it is very important for our community to get a better understanding of what the SVO’s are, what has been done thus far districtwide in the past, and what areas we will focus on in the future. I hope that the Q&A below helps clarify our SVOs as we continue to integrate them across each grade level at the District now and in the future.
What Are Our Shared Valued Outcomes (SVOs)?
Thinkers, Problem Solvers, Communicators, Collaborators, Innovators, and Committed Individuals are the six key attributes that the North Shore School District has outlined in our districtwide learning initiative. The Shared Valued Outcomes (SVOs) is a long-term plan developed by our District leaders in combination with our core constituencies to improve the quality of education for our K-12 students. Overall, they are the Necessary Skills and Associated Dispositions/Behaviors that Contribute to Being Successful in School and Beyond (please see the SVOs graphic or pdf)
What Has Been Done To Date Districtwide?
The SVO’s began in 2015 when North Shore administrators, faculty, staff, parents, and students were asked the question, “What do you value most in a child’s education?” It was agreed that we did not want traditional and/or standardized exams to be the only factor in determining a child’s learning skills. After reviewing the combined outcomes represented by our core constituencies, District leaders introduced the six key attributes of the SVOs (Thinkers, Problem Solvers, Communicators, Collaborators, Innovators, and Committed Individuals) that were felt to best prepare our students for college, work, and life. The primary goal of the SVOs is to provide our students with the necessary skills to not only be successful in school, but even more importantly to be successful citizens in the world for the rest of their lives.
Throughout the years, the SVO’s have been implemented in all five of the North Shore Schools in grades K-12. Their definitions and descriptors have been incorporated into the lessons of our faculty. Districtwide, our students have had many opportunities to practice them and create classwork around them. During each summer, administrators collect and document samples of the K-12 work in an effort to conduct benchmark analysis and further determine what needs to be improved within the SVOs. This past summer, a workshop was conducted with teachers, parents and students for further study, inquiry, and analysis. It was agreed that the next logical step in the District’s work would involve the deliberate and coordinated development of K-12 skills within two specific SVOs.
What Areas Will We Focus On Now And In The Future?
This school year, we will continue to focus on key components outlined in the SVOs with emphasis on two specific areas including communication and thinking. Our students with their teachers in grades K-12 will explore learning progressions and create work primarily in these two areas. This means that we will explore communication and thinking and build developmentally appropriate strands so that our students can demonstrate that they know and are able to demonstrate their mastery of each. Our administrators and faculty are currently working on refining the definitions and descriptors of all six SVO attributes to make sure they reflect a common understanding of our current goals. Additionally, they will be developing a “child-friendly” version with language that can be used in our classrooms.
Going forward, a Shared Valued Outcome Steering Committee will be created to expand our focus from a building-based approach to one that is comprehensive and cohesive across the entire District. They will work to ensure that our curriculum, program, and philosophy are implemented in systemic and systematic efforts for grades K-12.
In addition, the Tri-State Consortium will be visiting us this year to do a review on the SVOs. They include outside educators and administrators from other high-performing Districts working in the tri-state region who visit schools and review the effectiveness of curricula and program. They will help us take an objective look at the SVOs including how well they are known, the extent to which they are understood, and the degree in which they are enacted at our schools with a common approach.
Last but not least, we will be making a greater effort in our integrated school communications to ensure that the Shared Valued Outcomes are known and understood by all of our constituents in the North Shore community. In addition to this email, we will be communicating about the SVOs on our school website at www.northshoreschools.org, in our newsletters and print materials, in parent meetings, upcoming Board meetings, on my blog which can be accessed via the District homepage, and in social media. Please follow me on Twitter @PeterGiarrizzo.
Peter Giarrizzo, Ed. D.
Superintendent of Schools
North Shore Schools 112 Franklin Avenue Sea Cliff, NY 11579 District Number 516-277-7800
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