Hamilton County Board of Ed approves 5-year strategic 'Future Ready 2023' plan

Hill and McClendon also said they wanted to speak to their county commissioners about the plan as well before voting. The board went on to unanimously vote to accept the strategic plan. Image WTVC

For months superintendent Bryan Johnson talked about his Future Ready 2023 strategic plan at scheduled board meetings.

It's a strategic plan for the district that focuses on improving the school district over five years. Superintendent Bryan Johnson said the plan was developed based on state standards and based on hearing what parents said are priorities to them. It was up for approval on Thursday.

The strategic plan sets goals for the district to achieve by the year 2023. It outlines what Dr. Johnson calls action areas: accelerating student achievement, future ready students, great teachers and leaders, effective and efficient operations, and an engaged community. Each of those action areas has goals and strategies on how to achieve them. Johnson also set up key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the efficiency of each action area.

You can see the full plan, broken down by action areas, here:

"I think it's important to know and understand, a month from now, two months from now, three months from now, as we need to make refinements to it, that's all part of the process," said Johnson to the board.

Jenny Hill and Tucker McClendon sat in on their first board meeting since winning their elections. Both said they only recently had the opportunity to dig into Dr. Johnson's plan and asked to table the vote until next month.

"Some questions that I had," Hill said to the board. "Should we be measuring how many empty classrooms we have versus how many overcrowded classrooms we have. Number of portables, age of our portables, things like that as we look large at our big picture efficiency items. These feel like real numbers that matter to me as a tax payer, me as a mom."

But school board attorney Scott Bennett encouraged the board to vote Thursday night because Dr. Johnson's evaluation is a month overdue.

"The reason time might be important, is that this board still has to make an evaluation instrument for him [Dr. Johnson], based on this [the strategic plan]." Bennett explained. "So until you have this, you can't develop an evaluation instrument."

Other Board members told McClendon and Hill the strategic plan is a living document and can be amended at any time after a board vote. Hill decided to go on with a vote but not without a message to the board.

"Our kids matter a lot," she said. "If every time we make a document we say 'yeah but' then the document is not worth the paper its printed on."

Hill and McClendon also said they wanted to speak to their county commissioners about the plan as well before voting. The board went on to unanimously vote to accept the strategic plan.

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