The Caldwell-West Caldwell School District, in a collaborative partnership with family, community, and school, will provide the essential resources, opportunities, and experiences that will foster as well as challenge all pupils to achieve their greatest potential as lifetime self-directed learners; critical and creative thinkers; and responsible, productive citizens.
It is the expectation of this school district that students demonstrate academic integrity at all times, that they achieve the New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards and Common Core Standards at all grade levels, and that all graduates from James Caldwell High School are “future ready,” for college and/or career.
Being a lifetime self-directed learner is a crucial aspect of “future readiness.” Seymour Papert wrote, “The one really competitive skill is the skill of being able to learn… We need to produce people who know how to act when they’re faced with situations for which they were not specifically prepared.” Our vision of future ready schools is one in which:
- We foster the key dispositions for lifetime self-directed learners: aspiration, or wanting to learn a new skill; self-awareness, or knowing what we know and don’t know; vulnerability, or a willingness to see oneself as a perpetual beginner; and relentless curiosity.1
- We establish learner-centered spaces, allowing for personalized learning. Our educators develop caring and trusting relationships with their students, who, because of these relationships, are more engaged in their education and put more effort into their school work. We connect the curriculum to students’ interests, strengths, and aspirations.
- We foster critical and creative thinking, communication, and collaboration. We provide students with targeted instruction, practice, and support in areas where they are struggling, while ensuring they learn challenging academic content and skills. We connect learning to real-world applications.
- We leverage technology to facilitate greater student learning. We provide students with tools to master critical knowledge and skills, enabling them to take greater ownership of their learning. We use technology to create more flexible learning environments, incorporating multiple instructional approaches.
Schools must be places where students can take intellectual risks, learn and grow from their challenges in a supportive atmosphere, and develop the grit and resilience required to achieve their greatest potential.1 - Anderson/Richardson
Strategic Goals, 2017-2022
1. Student Achievement
a. Complete the next four years of the district’s Five Year Curriculum Plan, ensuring that students meet the New Jersey Student Learning Standards.
b. Review the ways in which we address the academic needs of all learners:
-Create additional opportunities for students to personalize learning.
-Implement a Tiered Instruction Model, including the creation of opportunities for struggling
students to receive additional educational experiences.
-Revise the GAP identification process according to best practices and currently available
-Review Special Education programming.
c. Explore potential improvements in school scheduling to enhance the learning experience for students
d. Complete and initiate a facility and staffing plan with the goal of creating innovative Future Ready learning environments, establishing more in-district special education services, and implementing full day Kindergarten.
e. Expand the offerings of the Continuing Education program
2. Professional Growth of Staff
a. Provide support for district educators in analyzing and responding to data in Professional Learning Communities.
b. Provide the professional development necessary to support student achievement goals.
c. Continue to revise the Observation and Evaluation System for Teachers and Principals.
a. Foster Future Ready classrooms where the 4C’s (communication, collaboration, creativity and critical thinking) are valued.
b. Review and revise the district technology plan, including sustainable technology purchasing goals.
c. Explore a one-to-one computing model.
a. Enhance and expand communications with parents and community at large.
5. Economic Sustainability
a. Pursue efficiencies and cost-savings.
b. Pursue additional revenue through grants and corporate sponsorships.
c. Establish priorities for maintaining facilities and fields through annual budget, capital reserve, etc.
6. Environmental Sustainability
a. Complete ESIP projects for lower energy usage.
b. Create opportunities for promoting environmental sustainability.
7. Social/Emotional Learning and Mental Health
a. Review and revise, if necessary, the district’s approach to social/emotional learning.
b. Review and revise, if necessary, the district’s approach to mental health.