As a board member for the last eight years, during which she was vice president of the board for two years and board president since January 2018, Carolyn was a catalyst for and had very significant influence over the following major enhancements. Her leadership is still needed to continue this progress:
- Finding a long term facilities solution. The results include an entire rebuild of the district’s comprehensive Mount Si High School on its same site, the addition of Timber Ridge Elementary School, and the restoration of Snoqualmie Middle School as the district’s third middle school. The high school rebuild will be substantially complete by the fall of 2019, with Mount Si’s performing arts center and baseball field completed in 2020.
- Establishing good district management practices by the defining of a mission and vision and the completion of a district-wide strategic plan, which had not existed prior to 2013. The strategic plan and the related objectives, success metrics, and district scorecard are now widely used in the district as the guiding light focusing in on one mission: preparing all students for college, career, and citizenship. This work is quite comprehensive, including professional development for staff, curriculum needs, the alignment of schools and grades, use of data and equipment, district leadership, budget priorities, etc.
- Starting to weave in much more significant career exploration opportunities in our schools and making connections between schools and employers in our community. Carolyn has been a very strong and vocal advocate for this for many years and led the effort to bring Career Exploration Fridays and other career learning opportunities to the high schools.
- Breaking down barriers by allowing access to more challenging opportunities for students who are interested and ready, trying to bring all of the PSAT, SAT, and ACT in house, and starting to reduce student fees.
- Completely overhauling the superintendent performance review process, using the strategic plan as well as best practices.
- Focusing on each and every student. Continuing to work diligently and passionately to help ensure that all students, including those with special physical or developmental needs, those who are un-engaged, and those who need an alternative learning environment, are provided the staff, programs, and classroom space and equipment to bring out their potential. Improving the high school graduation rate.
- Standardizing a process to help determine competitive pay for SVSD employees. This resulted in working with collective bargaining groups, comparing our pay rates to other districts, and making adjustments to salaries as needed.
- Conducting a nationwide search and hiring a new superintendent in 2018. Carolyn continues to hear very positive results from students, staff, parents, civic leaders, and the community at large as to the board’s great teamwork in bringing Dr. Manahan to the SVSD.
- Ensuring that additions were made to behavioral health staff and curriculum across the grades.
- Taking hard looks at the budget. Working with the administration to find the best solutions during tight budget times while focusing in on what’s best for students.
- Aligning curriculum vertically and horizontally across all schools and grades.
- Improving transparency and the open nature of the board’s work. Incorporating more ways to bring in all stakeholders and strengthening connections and communications with the broader community.
Carolyn looks forward to continue the progress on all of the above in her next term.