BVSD Strategies for Student Success

The Success Effect

At Boulder Valley School District, we’ve created a dynamic strategic plan that puts an innovative edge on individual attention.

Our Mission

The mission of the Boulder Valley School District is to create challenging, meaningful and engaging learning opportunities so that all children thrive and are prepared for successful, civically engaged lives.

Our Vision

We develop our children’s greatest abilities and make possible the discovery and pursuit of their dreams which, when fulfilled, will benefit us all. We provide a comprehensive and innovative approach to education and graduate successful, curious, lifelong learners who confidently confront the great challenges of their time.

Student Success - Learning / Talent / Partnership
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    Our Values

    We value accountability and transparency at all levels.

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    Our Values

    We address the intellectual growth, health and physical development, and social emotional well-being of students.

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    Our Values

    Societal inequities and unique learning needs will not be barriers to student success.

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    Our Values

    We respect the inherent value of each student and incorporate the strengths and diversity of students, families, staff, and communities.

District Goals

  1. Boulder Valley School District will partner with students, families, staff, and community members to address the unique learning needs of each student and to create meaningful and engaging opportunities for each child.
  2. Boulder Valley School District will ensure that each student meets or exceeds appropriate expectations relative to intellectual growth, physical development, and social emotional well-being.
  3. Boulder Valley School District will ensure that students, families, staff, and community members experience a safe, healthy and inclusive environment.

Strategies

The following strategies will be used to attain these goals:

  • Boulder Valley School District will assess the success of each child as well as the overall effectiveness of the school system using multiple measures.
  • Boulder Valley School District will partner with parents and the larger community to help all students enter school ready to learn and continue to learn throughout their educational experience.
  • Boulder Valley School District will attract, recruit, hire, and retain outstanding professionals at all levels of the organization.
  • Boulder Valley School District will provide high quality professional development.
  • Boulder Valley School District will increase community involvement, corporate partnerships, volunteer involvement, and legislative advocacy.
  • Community Voices & Stories

  • People throughout the Boulder Valley School District community are already talking about the Success Effect—many have been involved in the process alongside BVSD educators.

Clif Harald

One of the most important things to Boulder’s economy is talent—our employees and employers depend on it. And it all starts with public education. If a community isn’t developing the skills of its students in tandem with emerging trends and developments, we’ll fall behind. I’ve been amazed to see that the evolution of the Success Effect planning has been prolonged and intense, yet the passion of the administrators and executive team hasn’t waned one bit.

Clif Harald
Boulder Economic Council

Denys Vigil

The goals and action areas the superintendent’s strategic committee has set up are very valuable—they have come from the people, from the community. In the past, parents in the Latino community were not always approached in a way that was viable for them linguistically and culturally, but in this work, we were all listened to, and the school district brought that collective wisdom together to formulate the plan that is now called “The Success Effect.”

Denys Vigil
Latino Community Activist

Tina Mueh

We need to use resources in a way that personalizes the educational experience for every one of our students and breaks down barriers that may stand in the way of their learning. Components of the Success Effect will allow us to do that so every student gets a tailored education here in BVSD.

Tina Mueh
President, Boulder Valley Education Association

James A. Hill

In looking back on my career as an educator, I can recall one student in particular who would’ve benefited from the Success Effect enormously. He was a bright student who had goals and was motivated, but the way he was being instructed didn’t fit his learning style. He was great with his hands—he really wanted to be an auto mechanic, and he excelled in that area, but he struggled with math, but if you put problems to him in relation to the workings of a car, he did really well. Years later, he’s one of the top auto mechanics in Colorado Springs. It just shows that when you allow kids to take control of their learning, and define what success is for them, it makes a world of difference. The Success Effect allows more students to do precisely that.

James A. Hill
Principal, Boulder High School
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    At Louisville Middle School, Ms. Carew films the lessons she presents to her 6th-grade math class then posts the videos on her website. When a student comes home and has a question about her homework, she can watch the video and even share it with her parents, so they can understand the lesson and offer further guidance if needed. Occasionally, Ms. Carew also sends worksheets home that include examples of solved problems in lieu of problems from the textbook, so students and parents can see exactly how a problem was solved.

    VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kwpwsj74jPI

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    Innovative teachers at Ryan Elementary STEAM School, led by PE teacher Beth Buchanan, created a series of interactive cross content lessons around Alaska’s Iditarod, which students mirror by creating their own “human dog sled” race. Students engineer and create their own sleds, apply math skills to determine the distance between destinations, learn about biology through their own personal training program, and of course, gain a deeper understanding of teamwork and collaboration on the way to the finish line.

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    Beginning in the Fall of 2016, all of BVSD’s employees will move to online evaluations. Staff will also be able to select professional learning classes aligned with the goals that emerge from those evaluations–from mentoring, reading support, and mindfulness to training for new educators–all designed to improve our educators’ expertise and engagement, and make them even more effective at achieving success for BVSD students.

  • ConnectME!

    Learning can happen anyplace and anytime for students who have a digital device and an internet connection. To help ensure equitable access for all students, BVSD IT is working to bridge the digital divide that exists when students lack internet access by starting a new pilot called ConnectME (Connect My Education). Former Centaurus High School graduate and current CU student Balkarn Shahi understands first hand the digital divide that exists for some of our students and is passionate about working to bring access to all students. His idea, which is the foundation of ConnectME, is to partner with city government, charitable organizations, and BVSD to get families connected. Read more about this unique partnership, how it supports the Success Effect, and Balkarn’s GoFundMe effort in the CIO blog OR in a recent Daily Camera article.

Background

Beginning in 2013, the Boulder Valley School District formed a steering committee to develop a strategic plan, starting with the district mission, vision, and values. Beyond this framework, the strategic plan sought to define the essential organizing principles of student success—Learning, Talent and Partnerships. The superintendent’s strategic planning steering committee worked in partnership with educators, parents and community members to outline specific goals and strategies to ensure that our robust, diverse community of families, educators, and partners helps address the unique learning needs of each student and creates meaningful and engaging opportunities for each child.

An action plan is necessary to move the goals forward and measure student success. The superintendent’s strategic planning steering committee has advanced the new strategic plan by assembling detail-focused action teams who are establishing standards and measurements at all levels of the BVSD educational continuum. From maximizing learning opportunities, building an intentional culture of ongoing professional learning and growth for our talented educators, and deepening our ties with community partners, we are committed to backing up our goals with a system that measures progress and holds us accountable.