by Natasha L. Adams, Superintendent and CEO
West Clermont Schools
I was recently asked, “What is West Clermont’s ‘end game’ when it comes to the Community Town Halls?” My answer: The end game is to ensure that we are unlocking the full potential of each child in our district by fostering an actively engaged community committed to student success.
We know this can only be done TOGETHER! To do this we must listen and learn from one another how we might serve our students more impactfully. Our purpose is to experience some learning together, to understand what matters most to the community, and to co-create a plan that addresses our five key topics: school district design and purpose, educational programming, staff and student safety/wellness, facilities, and transportation.
Jamie Vollmer, author of “Schools Cannot Do it Alone,” claims there are four prerequisites to progress that are important in every school community to further student success:
Community understanding. The people of the community must have a basic understanding of why it’s important to unfold the full potential of every child. They must also understand why it’s necessary to change their schools to accomplish that goal.
Community trust. The public must trust that the people working in their schools are knowledgeable, committed professionals who work in the best interests of their students and the community.
Community permission. Schools are rooted in the culture of the community. Even modest changes can incite turmoil. Because the stakes are so high and the potential for backlash so great, we must secure the community’s permission before we proceed.
Community support. Schools cannot do it alone. The people of the community must join together to create a supportive learning environment dedicated to removing the obstacles to student success.
The town hall sessions are designed to be engaging, interactive sessions to help provide space for two-way conversations that will ultimately grow understanding of students’ needs, build trust, garner permission for changes and expand community support.
We are making all feedback or suggestions from our community from our town halls—as well as the YouTube Live recordings of both public town hall events—available to the public on a special "Town Halls" section of our WolfPack Hub.