Wichita Public Schools
Superintendent Entry Plan
"As superintendent of the Wichita Public Schools, I have a great desire to work relentlessly for the students and community of Wichita. I will send a clear message that collaboration, communication, competence and accountability in all areas of our work is the expectation that is essential to support student success."
New to the leadership role in Kansas' largest school district, Dr. Alicia Thompson is no stranger to the Wichita Public Schools. In her 25 years as a WPS educator and leader, she's learned what it takes to help students succeed. As a WPS student and proud graduate of Wichita Heights High School, she has benefitted from the generosity of a community that embraced her as a young person, growing personal and family roots in Wichita. She brings her knowledge of our district, her commitment to our community and her passion for student learning to her role as superintendent of the Wichita Public Schools.
At the same time Dr. Thompson is listening carefully to the thoughts and ideas of WPS stakeholders, she is also focused on three key student-centered objectives during her first year as superintendent:
- ACADEMIC RIGOR - including 3rd grade proficiency, an aligned and viable preK-12 curriculum, and choices and pathways to provide individualized experiences for students.
- SOCIAL, EMOTIONAL AND CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT - including the development of soft skills such as communication, collaboration, conflict resolution, organization, problem solving, self-regulation, teamwork and collaboration, and time management.
- STRATEGIC COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS - including enhanced school/family communication, thriving site councils and collaborative community partnerships.
Strategic Listening Opportunities
Participants will share their perspective on four questions:
- What WPS is doing well
- What areas present the greatest challenges for WPS
- What needs to be in place in order to move the district forward
- How can we best communicate with you to promote an open and transparent district culture?
This WPS entry plan outlines specific strategies to provide Dr. Thompson the opportunity to learn through the lens of the superintendent about our district's students, staff and the community that supports them. By engaging in this entry plan, Dr. Thompson will LISTEN, LEARN, PLAN then LEAD. She will learn what WPS is doing well, what areas present the greatest challenges for WPS, and what needs to be in place in order to move the district forward.
Activities outlined in Dr. Thompson's entry plan will be guided by the following transitional goals:
- Assess the strengths and weaknesses of the district's academic program.
- Assess the district's current financial position.
- Assess the operational efficiencies and alignment.
- Assess the strengths and weaknesses of the district's performance management system.
- Assess the district's current political landscape.
- Establish a positive board-superintendent relationship.
- Continue a positive working relationship with administrators, teachers and support staff.
- Continue a positive presence in the community.
- Establish positive relationships with key partners.
- Ensure a flawless opening to the 2017-18 academic year.
Completion of this entry plan will allow Dr. Thompson to establish relationships with internal and external stakeholders while gaining a deeper understanding of the district's strengths and challenges. The structured listening and learning sessions, and corresponding strategic plan data collection process, will enable Dr. Thompson to maximize the district's efforts toward accelerating student achievement for ALL students within the Wichita Public Schools.
Upon completion of these activities, a culminating report with findings and proposed strategies for system-wide improvements will be released to the Wichita Board of Education and WPS community in spring 2018.