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Morris High School updates strategic plan

Published: Thursday, July 17, 2014 9:17 p.m. CST

MORRIS – Morris Community High School District 101 has updated its strategic goals and objectives for 2014 to 2016.

The strategic goals look at five areas of focus: Human Resources, Teaching and Learning, Communications, Finance, and Extra/Co-curricular activities, which was added three years ago.

“The strategic plan has been in place since 2008, we added an area of focus three years ago expanding it to five areas,” Superintendent Pat Halloran said Thursday. “It shows areas that need attention, but also shows us what is working that is in place.”

He said the Rising Star program – which is headed by Principal Kelly Hussey with committee members that include staff, a board member and a parent – has been very successful. The program falls under the Teaching and Learning area of focus and is a school improvement team. But one area that needs attention is better implementation of goals with all the teachers.

“Rising Star is a standing committee that has a two year rotation. They take aggregated data and research and set goals,” Hussey said Thursday.

He said improvement would come in the form of teachers buying in to those goals and implementing them long term.

In the Human Resource area of focus, Halloran said fostering awareness and respect for the diversity of the student community was added to the list of areas needing attention due to a new state mandate in regards to bullying.

Hussey said it is part of a state-wide bullying initiative, and they’ve already started improving that area by scheduling programs with outside sources that will address bullying.

“We realized there was nothing in the plan that was specific to that component so we added it,” Hussey said. “We decided not only should it be done because of the mandate but it’s valuable to the kids to learn what it is, and how to address it.”

Other issues addressed include a reading specialist to assist teachers as well as students, increasing Advanced Placement offerings and implementing a coaches handbook, which is a follow up from last year.

Halloran said some of the items will be incorporated with current objectives, and other items will become new objectives.

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