FAIRBURY, NE — The search for solutions to perceived culture problems is taking a step forward in Fairbury.
A three-person board of impartial facilitators presented the findings of a stakeholders committee to the Fairbury school board on Wednesday. The committee was born after a heated board meeting in April in which 20 speakers criticized district administration in front of a crowd of 130 people.
Facilitator John Skretta says it was apparent in meetings that criticism was motivated by pride for the school district.
“Just how caring and committed the staff, the administration, the board and the community is to seeing FPS succeed,” Skretta said.
The committee was 30 people strong and included school staff, administration, school board members and local residents. The group identified culture, communication, trust and support as the four themes to build upon. The facilitators used committee input to draft a recommendation for each theme.
Skretta says the main issues the group discussed are common in education.
“That’s good news because what it reflects is that there’s also solutions out there," Skretta said. "There are best practices that FPS can strengthen in things they’re already doing and there are some new, innovating, exciting ways they can take new, bold steps for their district.”
The facilitators recommended the board schedule a work session after the next board meeting to review the new information. The stakeholder group plans to meet in October and March during parent/teacher conferences to check on progress.
Skretta encourages the board to take its time to digest the suggestions.
“Sit back and marinate in the input because there’s a lot there," Skretta said. "Just take the time to actually process the information gathered. Say, ‘where can we take this, where do we go next with this?’”
Recommendation: Consider developing a goal around creating a shared belief or vision regarding the purpose of the Fairbury Public Schools.
Recommendation: Consider a goal around developing and implementing a district communications plan leveraging input and suggestions from committee members.
Recommendation: Consider a goal that promotes open communication, encourages relationship building, respects the input of others and transparency in district issues and decisions
Recommendation: Consider a goal that provides a recommitment to “reviewing” the MTSS Process so that individual’s knowledge of MTSS is better defined and clarified.