District looks to improve public relations

by Kurt Nesbitt
Contributing Writer
Elk River Area School District officials say they want to develop good relationships with the people who have an interest or concern in what the district does.

School Board Chair Shane Steinbrecher presented a one-page document to the board Monday night that outlines three goals for both the board and the superintendent.

Here’s a summary, starting with the School Board’s goals.
The School Board should review all of its policies to bring them up to date and develop a review cycle that deals with policy evaluation going forward.

The School Board will also publish an official communication to stakeholders at least 10 times throughout the year, and three of them will be distributed to residents living within the district’s boundaries. School Board members will contribute and the communications will be evaluated.

Each month, at least one School Board member will participate in one school-related and one community or business event and then share any information learned at the next School Board meeting.

For the superintendent, a discussion with the School Board and the heads of the district departments about the roles they play as they relate to many aspects of running the district, including communications, operations and practices, will be completed. The progress will be evaluated.

The superintendent will continue to communicate relevant district and department information to principals, directors and School Board members on the second and fourth Friday of every month and work with the department heads to make sure everyone has access to the information and opportunities to provide feedback.

The superintendent will also spend time at 10 different school-related and two community events and share any information learned at those events with the board and cabinet for them to evaluate and possibly put into action.

Steinbrecher said the plan focuses on “visibility, communication and leadership.”

He said the goals will be posted on the district’s website, www.isd728.org.

District 728 goals at a glance:

School Board goals
By October 15, 2017, the Board of Education will review and approve all “Mandatory” School Board Policies and develop a policy review cycle that addresses the evaluation of all ISD 728 Policies by June 30, 2020. Progress on said goal will be evaluated no later than November 1, 2017.

At least 10 times throughout the school year, the Board of Education will create and publish a written “Board Communication” to stakeholders. At least three of the publications shall be distributed to district residents. Each board member will contribute to at least one publication. Progress on said goal will be evaluated in December 2017 and June 2018.

Each month, at least one board member will participate in one school-related and one community/business event (i.e. Chamber, Rotary, etc.). The participating board representative will share the information learned at a regular Business Meeting. Each board member will participate in at least one school and one community event by June 30, 2018. Progress on said goal will be evaluated in December 2017 and June 2018.

District Benefit: Develop positive relationships, increase visibility and leadership, and foster mutually beneficial partnerships with school and community stakeholders.

Superintendent goals
In collaboration with board and cabinet, and no later than October 15, discuss, develop, and articulate (in writing) board, cabinet and superintendent roles as they relate to communications, operations, procedures, practices, etc. Progress on said goal will be evaluated a minimum of three times throughout the year (December, March, June).

The second and fourth Friday of every month, communicate relevant district and department information to leadership (i.e. principals, directors, school board members, etc.) and community stakeholders. Each time new information is communicated, work with Cabinet to ensure all stakeholders have access (i.e. website, social media, etc.) and an opportunity to provide feedback.

Each month, spend time at a minimum of 10 different schools and/or school-related events within the school district, and at least two different community/business events (i.e. Chamber, Rotary, etc.). Information shared and learned will be discussed and/or communicated with/to the oard and cabinet, while being evaluated, considered, and when appropriate, implemented within the school district’s next strategic plan.