“‘Strategic planning’ is an oxymoronic term. If you have a fixed plan, it is no longer ‘strategic’. In today’s educational environment, flexibility and adaptability are essential. That is why I prefer to focus on an agile ‘strategic vision’ that is nourished by – and flows directly from – the school’s distinctive mission”.
Developing and implementing an effective, robust strategic vision is one of the most powerful ways in which a board can guide the direction of the school. Sadly, too many strategic visions are neither effective nor robust.
OPTIMAL SCHOOL GOVERNANCE supports boards in developing effective and robust strategic plans. Recognising that every school has unique characteristics, objectives and mission, we tailor the strategic planning process according to the distinctive needs of each school. We reject the ‘cookie-cutter’ approach that limits a school’s strategic potential by forcing its vision to conform to a predetermined framework.
We support boards by doing the difficult and time-consuming work of developing the strategic vision, such as engaging in consultations with key stakeholders, drafting interim statements, identifying key objectives, gathering background demographic and economic data, conducting surveys, and so on. We support the board fully while allowing the board complete autonomy in making its strategic decisions.
For school boards that find it helpful, OPTIMAL SCHOOL GOVERNANCE offers a flexible conceptual framework for strategic plans as shown in the diagram below left. For boards that prefer to take a totally different approach, we offer complete support.
Our support for boards in developing a strategic vision includes the following points:
OPTIMAL SCHOOL GOVERNANCE understands that all final decisions relating to the strategic direction of the school remain the board’s responsibility. We see our task as being to provide whatever help and support the board requests in order to ensure optimal decisions are made that will enhance the school’s health and future.
If you are considering obtaining professional support as you develop a new strategic plan, we would like to hear from you as we are specialists in services that support school boards – it is our sole focus. A confidential, preliminary conversation might allow us to answer some of your questions and learn more about your school’s particular situation and needs. Please initiate a conversation by sending us an e-mail or phoning us using the links on our Contact Us page.