Friday, December 21, 2018

Planning for Community Visioning

Toledo SD will host a Community Visioning meeting on Thursday, January 10 at 6 p.m. at THS for the purpose of beginning to envision the new Toledo High School. The folks at Dowa/IBI have offered to facilitate this meeting. This is an architectural firm that specializes in school construction. Jason King, a THS alumnus, is scheduled to facilitate. I've had several conversations with their principals and I'm expecting a great event that will do more than get a "laundry list" of features, but will get at the heart of what our community wants to have as a school for the next 50 years.

We're asking that you give some consideration to these "primer questions" prior to the meeting. This is to get you thinking about the school in ways that you might not have considered:

  •  How do we define success for this project?
  •   What are your Hopes and Dreams for the new high school?
  •  What are your Fears about the new school?
  •  What are your Hopes, Dreams, and Fears for your kids’ futures?
  •  What are the top jobs and careers you want for your kids?
  • What are the most important things you want your kids to learn (skills vs knowledge - STEM/CTE, robotics, foreign language/other cultures, food, outdoor learning, etc)?
  • What businesses or community organizations would you most like to have involved in your school?
  •  How many of you as parents work outside of normal hours (M-F, 8-6)?
  • How many of your kids have smartphones?
  •  What do your kids do after school?
  •  What would you like your kids to do after school?
  •  If you had one thing this school should say to your kids and to their kids, what should it say?
We'd also like you to bring photos you feel evoke the kind of feeling, activity, or appearance you would like to see in the new high school. Dowa/IBI will be bringing photos of other schools for you to react to. This meeting should take about 90 minutes to two hours depending upon attendance.

Following the visioning, I'll be providing a quick overview of the upcoming replacement levy proposal that will be on the February ballot. The district is requesting an $895,000 levy for two years to support things like all athletics, after school activities, class size reduction, additional electives at the middle and high schools, elementary music and more. This levy is $205,000 less each year than the current levy that will expire at the end of 2019. If not replaced, programs and staffing will need to be reduced.