The process began a few weeks ago when the strategic committee — a volunteer group of 25 members from the community, parents, CISD faculty, staff, and administrators — met for the first time during an all-day work session.
“We asked a group of people representing the business and health communities, parents, governmental entities, our teachers and administrators to come together to build a consensus on our beliefs, our objectives, our strategies and our parameters and what we are going to put into place to make these happen,” said Dr. Amy Jacobs, CISD Strategic Plan Facilitator, who led the meeting.
Education is one of the keystones to strong community said committee member Emma Krabill, CEO of Scenic Mountain Medical Center and parent of a CISD student.
“When I work on recruiting great professionals like physicians or nurses, therapists, what I sell them when I sell them the community is basically education, if we are safe as a community, and how good we are as a city,” Krabill said. “So for me having a successful education system is key. People don’t want to come to a community where you don’t have strong education. Those are part of the choices that others make when they come to live in Big Spring. I think strong schools make a strong community.”
Also among the committee were two Coahoma High School students, Grayson Glidewell and Julia Cox, who gave up part of their student holiday to participate in the discussion.
“I think this is important because this is where the district is going, so it’s important to have kids input and the community’s,” Glidewell said. “I gave up my holiday just because I think it’s important and when I was asked to contribute I was glad.”
During the consensus building session, the committee developed five values to meet the educational needs of Coahoma students in the next 25 years.
Those values are:
We will offer a robust Career and Technical Education program to include community partnerships and career explorations
We will integrate healthcare components into district programs in order to increase staff and student attendance
We will develop and implement a comprehensive early childhood program.
We will integrate leadership and life skills development into our PK-12 curriculum and program offerings.
We will implement community outreach initiatives to support student learning and district support
To begin the next phase, the school district is seeking volunteers from the community to serve on action committees to develop ways to hold the district accountable for implementing these five values.
“Over the next six to eight weeks, each team will meet three to four times. The meetings could vary anywhere from an hour to two hours each depending on the work of each team,” Jacobs explained. “The members get to drive how much time and energy they put into it.
“We are looking for people who are passionate about making our school better and are willing to work to support the strategies established by the strategic planning team,” she continued.
“We want diverse people who will put students first in all their decision makings and can support the rest of the beliefs the strategic planning committee set in place.”
Those action committees are:
Career and Technical Education Action Team
Healthcare Action Team
Early Childhood Action Team
Leadership and Life Skills Development Action Team
Community Outreach Action Team
“Everything we are doing in these action committees is for our kids, for the future of our kids, and for the future of Coahoma,” said Michael Brooks, CISD board president, who took part in the strategic committee work session. “I would encourage anybody that has an interest to show up and just get educated and put in your 10 cents worth.”
Kyle Carroll volunteered for the strategic committee, so he could express his concerns and opinions as CISD plans for the future. Carroll, who is the parent of a child attending The Academy, said he felt his voice was heard at the meeting.
“I think they are listening and taking feedback from all of us, and I think we have a nice mix of people — parents, community leaders, teachers, administrators,” Carroll said. “I think we are all putting our heads together and listening to each others wants and needs.”
Krabill also said she felt her ideas were heard.
“I feel like we are making an impact because we have a say-so on what the values are that we want to see and have those shared by the schools,” she said. “We are going to be a part of the matrix of these strategic goals for the future, so it’s extremely exciting.”
For more information or to volunteer to serve on an action committee, call the district administrative office at 394-5000 or sign up at the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CoahomaISD