AHS School Board adopts strategic roadmap

Published 7:39 pm Tuesday, April 12, 2022

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The Austin Schools Board on Monday night adopted the district’s strategic roadmap, which will effectively guide the district through the next three years.

The board and administration started on the project in October.

The strategic roadmap set its mission, vision and core values and finally, determined its strategic priorities. These are four steps that will drive the district’s continued improvements and include:

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• Support and resources to ensure a safe and welcoming learning environment;

• Packer Profile for all learners;

• District-wide multi-tiered systems of support for all learners; and

• Excellence in resource management.

A part of the roadmap, which will become especially important, will be the Packer Profile, which will be a major part of developing students for after they graduate.

“Packer Profile … that is something we will be launching for Pre-K through 12th grade and will look at what we want our students to be engaged in and learning through the entire system,” said Superintendent Dr. Joey Page. “That is going to be our biggest, most important work that comes out of our strategic plan in developing graduates in their career pathways and really launch them into life after high school.”

In order to get to this point, the board and administration looked closely at operations over the past 30 years as well as examining current trends, all in an effort to define the desired daily experience for students.

“I think what is important is finding out what is our purpose … what we do we aim to create, what are the drivers of our actions,” Page said. “It continues the improvement cycle of what our priorities are.”

The roadmap also asked the public, which included parents and students, to fill out surveys during the process. Focus groups were also employed to ensure all groups were represented.

While the roadmap is now set, Board Chair Kathy Green recognized that with the continued evolution of education, the board and administration should be ready to adapt as needs arise.

“This is supposed to pulls us forward into the next three years, but the way things are spinning we may have to make some tweaks along the way,” Green said. “It’s a living document.”

In other news

• AHS Activities Director Lisa Quednow will be stepping down at the end of April to take the position of associate director with the Minnesota State High School League.

She will fill one of two vacancies at that position at the organization, and will continue to support  AHS through the spring sports season as needed.

“I am grateful to have the opportunity to continue and grow education based athletic and fine arts opportunities for kids in Minnesota,” Quednow said in a statement Wednesday. “I have had an incredible opportunity to serve as a leader in an amazing community of Austin as well as the Big 9 Conference and Region 1AA.  I look forward to expanding relationships as I am now going to be able to serve broader communities,  school districts and programs throughout the state.”

Page said that her time over the 13 years in Austin has helped establish Austin activities as some of the best in the state.

“Just a tremendous shift in all the activities and sports over the past 13 years,” Page said. “It’s an incredible run.”

Quednow has been the high school’s AD since 2009. The district will post for the position this week.

• For the first time in 10 years, Austin High School will host the 88th Big Nine Music Festival, one of the oldest music festivals of its kind in the United States.