PUSD to host public forums as it updates mission, vision, and core value statements

The Board of Education will host two public forums on Tuesday, Oct. 11 (6:30 – 8:30 p.m.) and Wednesday, Oct. 19 (4 – 6 p.m.) in the Piedmont High School Student Center to give the public an opportunity to weigh in on revisions to its mission, vision, and core values statement — a process trustees say is integral to the search for a new superintendent. The last revision to the Board’s policy was in 2011; it was first adopted in 1999.

Students, parents, faculty, staff, and the wider Piedmont community are invited to attend these small table group sessions, and input from these meetings will be compiled and factored into the final version of the statements that will come to the Board for a first reading at its Oct. 26 meeting, with the hope that it is approved on Nov. 9 before the superintendent search gets fully underway, said Board President Cory Smegal at the Sept. 28 school board meeting.

PUSD’s Board Policy 0100 can be read in its entirety HERE. The district’s current mission statement reads as follows.

Piedmont Unified School District, an exemplary school district committed to public education, is dedicated to developing independent learners who are responsible, competent, collaborative, compassionate, and intellectually curious with a strong sense of self and community. Through quality instruction and shared leadership, the District will impart knowledge and promote creative and critical thinking in a safe, nurturing and challenging environment.

PUSD Board Policy 0100

On Tuesday, Oct. 4, the district sent the following proposed revisions to the community for review before the meetings:

Draft Vision Statement:

Piedmont Unified School District students are: 

  • Inspired to be courageous, equity-driven leaders. 
  • Inspired to think critically. 
  • Ready to take on challenges and make a difference. 

Draft Mission Statement:

Piedmont Unified School District provides all students with an excellent education that includes a broad-based academic and social-emotional curriculum, delivered by exemplary staff in an environment that is caring, equitable, and inclusive.

Proposed Core Values:

Our district embraces these core values in educational practice and operational strategy:

Integrity –  We elevate honesty and ethics as the centerpiece of all that we do.

Equity –  We foster a welcoming, inclusive environment where individuals are nurtured, where barriers to success are eliminated, and where everyone has the opportunity to reach their potential free from racism and other forms of inherent bias. 

Academic Excellence –  We aim to deliver outstanding academics that pave the way for all students to achieve mastery of content, media literacy, and cultural competency. 

Growth-Mindset –  We promote resilience, diligent work, and risk-taking as students advance along their learning journeys. 

Curiosity –  We encourage students to ask questions, explore their interests and talents, innovate, and find joy in life-long learning.

Community Partnership –  We strive to create authentic and productive relationships among  students, teachers, staff, administrators, families and community members who support the district’s mission and vision. We model collaboration, respect, and kindness.

Courage –  We stand for taking action with purpose and resolve when doing the right thing on behalf of the public good may be difficult. 

At the meeting, Smegal said part of the impetus for the update emerged from equity and inclusion training last winter and spring led by PUSD’s new director of diversity, equity, and inclusion, Dr. Marguerite Vanden Wyngaard. She asked the Board to consider if the current policy, now more than 20 years old, still reflected PUSD’s values. When the Board met again over the summer, Smegal said, one of the themes that kept coming up revolved around specifying some of the qualities, skills, or traits that students should take with them into the world beyond Piedmont.

The district asks for those interested in attending one of the public meetings to RSVP HERE.

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