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The Board of Education of the Downey Unified School District believes that:
1Education is a lifelong process of learning and living and our schools are dedicated to the challenge of providing the opportunity for individuals both youth and adult to gain the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to work and live successfully and to assume the responsibilities inherent in a democratic society.
2Students must be prepared to encounter the daily challenges of the present diverse, multicultural environment and to resolve the constantly changing problems of their future. Not only is education charged with preparing the student to meet life as he/she finds it, but it must inspire him/her positively and morally to affect and improve the world itself.
The Board of Education believes this can best be accomplished by establishing educational programs within which emphasis will be placed upon the following:
1Provide opportunities for all students to become competent with basic subject matter areas by:
a. Gaining the necessary information and tools by which they can learn and develop the skills of communication–listening, speaking, reading, writing, and spelling.
b. Learning to handle abstract and concrete concepts in mathematics and science, with a realization of how this knowledge may be applied to daily living, and how to apply these tools to drawing conclusions.
c. Involvement in the experiences needed to develop skill in the fine and practical arts with emphasis on potential creativeness, inventiveness, and originality.
d. Having meaningful experiences that will develop a basic understanding of our nation’s and the world’s economic structure.
e. Developing skills in the use of tools and machines and an understanding of the role of machines and technology in mankind’s present and future.
2Individuals should be taught by precept and example to respect authority and to understand that they, too, may someday be in positions of authority, and that respect must be earned and given by:
a. Teaching individuals to be tolerant of their fellowman and to respect the rights, dignity, and worth of the individual and his/her property.
b. Developing within each person the insights to interpersonal relationships which are needed to live harmoniously with others with respect for their rights.
c. Encouraging in each student a high standard of honesty and morality.
d. Developing in each student an intellectual curiosity and the ability to experience the joy of discovery.
3Enable all students to develop themselves to the ultimate of their potential in a district which will be a model for a just and equitable society.
4Develop an understanding and appreciation of the culture, responsibilities, and heritage of our democratic society which will be reflected by
a. A deep sense of pride in our American heritage.
b. A devotion to the country in which we live.
c. A sound belief in the advantages and opportunities of a democracy.
d. A belief in the destiny of our country as an example of a world leader in a free society.
In this dynamic world these goals of the Downey Unified School District will be reevaluated continually for their worth. Only to the extent that each person achieves these present goals and develops the ability to adjust to the goals and circumstances of tomorrow’s world will the home and the agencies of society, including the schools, have achieved their purpose.
Further, the Board conceives of the District as being a cooperative enterprise in which home, church, school, and other community forces all share in the educational development of individuals. In these, our community schools, the Board of Education urges all parents and citizens to become its partners.
The Board of Education accepts the responsibility delegated by the community at large to commit the human and material resources necessary to implement an educational program designed to achieve the curricular, instructional, and managerial expectancies as stated within a framework defined by the adopted Philosophy of Education.
2019-20 Board of Education Goals
- Downey will demonstrate a measurable growth trend of 10% as reflected by the California College and Career Readiness Dashboard. Measurements of focus will include University of California and California State University (UC/CSU) eligibility, Career Technical Education (CTE) Pathway Completion, California State Seal of Bi-literacy eligibility, Smarter Balance Assessment (SBA) (Score 3+), Advanced Placement (AP) participation and score of 3 and above.
- Downey Unified will continue to enhance Districtwide parent engagement opportunities through parent academies, workshops and the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) process. Continue to partner with all parent advisory groups in building parent capacity and leadership that includes enhancing parent outreach communication through full implementation of the DUSD online app, social media, and site websites.
- Downey Unified will continue its commitment to student safety, wellness, and engagement via CHARACTER COUNTS!, Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS), and other relevant whole child supports including the pursuit and fulfillment to be a National CHARACTER COUNTS! Exemplary School District.
- Downey Unified will obtain Division of the State Architect (DSA) approval for Doty Middle School, complete modernization of Stauffer Middle School, and work toward completion of modernization at Griffiths and Sussman Middle Schools in order to meet the Fall 2020-2021 construction deadline.
- Downey Unified will maintain the strong fiscal position that our District has achieved through the deliberate management and strategic oversight of state funding realities. Continue to use and refine Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) and Federal Funding resources to implement the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) enabling students to reach their full potential.
- Downey Unified will refine First Best Instruction (FBI) and continue to implement system-wide interventions to support student academic success.
- Downey Unified will increase zero and seventh period options at the secondary schools and closely follow the progress of SB328 in order to proactively prepare for possible implementation of later start times at the secondary level.
- Downey Unified will execute the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) plan that incorporates professional development and implementation: Elementary- Pilot NGSS curriculum; Middle School- Thematic Design and Common Formative Assessments; High School- Thematic Design, Lab and Rubrics and Common Formative Assessments.
- Downey Unified will implement Career Technical Education (CTE) grant plans for Career Technical Education Incentive Grant (CTEIG), K12 Strong Workforce Program (K12 SWP), and Carl Perkins V. The focus will be on best practices that strengthen the sustainability through further development and implementation of essential pathway elements in the Elementary, Middle School, and High School segments.
- In an effort to reach Downey Unified’s goal of 23,000 students by 2021, we will increase marketing and public communication efforts, successfully implement the Global Language Academies of Downey (GLAD) initiative and utilize the enrollment growth committee to generate and explore additional innovative programs at the secondary level; including before and after school care and extended learning options for projected implementation August 2020.
Board and Superintendent Operating Procedures and Protocols
The Board of Education is the educational policy-making body for the District. To meet the District’s challenges effectively, the Board and Superintendent must function together as a leadership team. To ensure unity among team members, effective operating procedures, or protocols, must be in place. There are general protocols and those that are specific for the Board and Superintendent.
The Board and Superintendent will:
- Be dedicated to make all other members of the team successful.
- Operate in an honorable and honest manner dedicated to the success of the students and staff of the District.
- Be treated with dignity and respect.
Board Member Protocols
Board Members will:
- Work with members of the Board and the Superintendent to become a governing board devoted to students.
- Focus on policy-making, planning and evaluation for student success.
- Recognize that the Board makes decisions as a whole only at properly scheduled meetings and that individual members have no authority to take individual action in policy or District and campus administrative matters.
- Respect and honor the right of individual members to express opposing viewpoints and vote their convictions.
- Attend regularly scheduled Board meetings unless a situation occurs that makes attendance impossible.
- Cooperate in scheduling Special meetings and/or work sessions for planning and training purposes.
- Acknowledge that two Board Members must agree before an item is placed on a meeting agenda and honor the “no surprises” rule in regards to said item. Individual requests for reports, projects, etc., will be directed only to the Superintendent.
- Uphold the legal requirement for confidentiality on all matters arising from Board Meeting closed sessions; will keep all conversations taking place in closed session absolutely confidential.
- Recognize and respect the Superintendent’s responsibility to manage the District and to direct employees in District and campus matters.
- Understand the Superintendent’s role to make personnel recommendations and changes in consultation with the Board.
- Participate in establishing annual expectations and goals for the Superintendent.
- Objectively evaluate the Superintendent’s performance and provide appropriate feedback.
- Participate in self-assessment of the Board’s performance.
- Communicate directly with the Superintendent when staff, students, parents, or community members raise a question or concern.
- Communicate directly with the Superintendent prior to Board Meetings to address questions and/or concerns about agenda items; honor the “no surprises” rule.
- Communicate one-on-one with the Superintendent when an individual concern arises; will not allow a matter to fester.
- Cast a vote on all matters except when a conflict of interest arises.
- Recognize the individual role of constituents and special interest groups while understanding the importance of using one’s best judgment to represent members of the community.
- As time permits, visit school sites and attend school functions, but avoid interrupting instruction or interrupting employees at work.
- Represent the District, when possible, by attending community functions.
- Work toward creating a team with the Board dedicated to students.
- Respect and acknowledge the Board’s role in setting policy and overseeing the performance of the Superintendent.
- Work with the Board to establish a clear vision for the District.
- Prepare preliminary goals annually for the Board’s consideration.
- Provide data to the Board Members so data-driven decisions can be made.
- Have a working knowledge of all legal and local policies.
- Make personnel recommendations and changes in consultation with the Board.
- Inform the Board prior to critical information becoming public.
- Distribute information fully and equally to all Board Members.
- Communicate with Board Members promptly and effectively.
- Distribute the Board Agenda in a timely fashion and with enough time for Board study, and clarify information prior to scheduled meetings.
- Respect the confidentiality requirement of Board Meeting closed sessions; keep all conversations taking place in closed session strictly confidential.
- Treat all Board Members professionally.
- Communicate with individual Board Members to determine if concerns exist prior to a possible problem developing.
- Conduct a self-assessment prior to the Board’s evaluation of the Superintendent’s job performance.
- Bring to the attention of the Board matters that affect relationships.
- Visit school campuses regularly.
- Represent the District by being visible in the community.