Downingtown Area School District
The mission of the Downingtown Area School District, proud of our tradition of excellence, is to educate all students to meet the challenges of a global society by providing an individually responsive learning environment characterized by outstanding academic and personal achievement in partnership with family, students and community.
Every person has value.
Each individual has the potential and the responsibility to contribute to the betterment of society.
All individuals have an innate desire to learn, and they learn in different ways and at different rates. Achievement is related directly to expectations and the level of commitment.
Learning is a lifelong process
Individuals are responsible and accountable for their own actions.
Positive self-worth enhances academic growth and interpersonal development.
Change creates opportunities and challenges individuals and organizations to improve
All children can be successful at learning
The home environment is critically important to the nurturing and development of the child
Education is the shared responsibility of the family, student, school, and community.
An educated public is necessary for a democratic society to endure
Recognition and acknowledgment of diversity enrich our community and help prepare people for a global society.
No new program or service will be accepted unless it is consistent with the strategic plan, benefits clearly justify the cost, and provisions are made for staff development and program evaluation.
No new program or service will be retained unless it makes an optimal contribution to our mission, and the benefits clearly continue to exceed the cost.
We will balance the needs of our students with the community's ability and willingness to pay.
We will not tolerate any behavior, which diminishes the dignity or self-worth of any individual.
We will maintain a safe environment conducive to learning.
Site-based decisions will be consistent with the strategic direction of the district.
We will balance the number of new initiatives with the staff's ability to respond effectively.
Engage the hearts and minds of all our students through relevant, high quality learning experiences that prepare them to be active 21st century citizens in a global society.
Strategy 1 – 21st Century Learners
We foster the development of good citizenship within which students will become service oriented and contributing members of the local and global society prepared with 21st century knowledge and skills, such as competence in traditional academic disciplines, personal responsibility, self-directed learning, problem solving skills, information and technology literacy, and global understanding.
Strategy 2 – Flexible Educational Opportunities
We provide individually responsive opportunities for learning within and beyond the walls of the traditional school environment through the flexible use of technology and/or other resources.
Strategy 3 – Personal Connections
We surround students with caring individuals in a safe, nurturing environment. This supportive climate helps students achieve their goals
Strategy 4 – Partnership with the Community
We partner with the local and global community to develop mentoring programs, internships and other support services that enrich the education of all our students.
Strategy 5 – Communications
We provide and actively support open, honest, high-quality and ongoing communication. We promote a multi-faceted exchange of information, ideas and expectations through the use of the most effective communication tools.
In 2001, the Strategic Plan was renewed for another six school years. When the Downingtown Area School District created its Strategic Plan, public education initiatives such as the No Child Left Behind Act and English as a Second Language were not yet having a dramatic impact on the district.
During the 2003-2004 school year, school officials needed to respond to those issues as the district conducted the Mid-Point Review of Downingtown’s Strategic Plan. The Plan, which was initially written in 2001, was revised to extend through the 2006-2007 school year. The Mid-Point Review, required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, is a process by which school district officials re-examine the Strategic Plan to monitor district progress and make sure that the district is on the path toward meeting the mutually agreed upon goals and objectives, as well as federal and state requirements.
A Mid-Point Review Summit took place in March 2004, involving students, community members, school board members, administrators, support staff and teachers. Over two days, the “shareholders” of the district examined strategies to determine what is working well and the areas that need to be improved. In addition, the group discussed ideas and strategies to inextricably link the Strategic Plan and district goal-setting practices. Administrators, teachers and students participate in goal setting. In the future, goals will be coherently and articulately tied to the Strategic Plan. Now, school officials are concentrating on their efforts on weaving the new strategies and single objective of the Strategic Plan into the district goal-setting process. Doing so will allow for more flexibility and responsiveness to an ever-changing educational environment.
In February 2007, 55 community members comprised of administrators, board members, teachers, students, business and community leaders gathered to begin developing a new strategic plan. From these meetings emerged a new objective and strategies that will guide the district for the next six years.