Calling all Sequim alumni.
Leaders with the Sequim School District are seeking input from local school advocates as they get into the heart of a nine-part schedule to shape the future of Sequim schools by creating a strategic plan.
The series kicked off Jan. 12 with an introduction and continued on Jan. 26 with a focus on “workforce needs and societal changes.”
The series continues every other Thursday (except for April), with sessions at 6-7:30 p.m. Thursday, at the Guy Cole Event Center, 202 N. Blake Ave.
The next session, on Thursday, Feb. 9, addresses “Workforce Readiness and Skills for the Future,” while the March 2 session takes on “Identifying 21st Century Competencies.”
Sequim schools superintendent Regan Nickels said the ideas from the sessions will help shape the over-arching goals, objectives and ultimately the initiatives the district will prioritize. School board members will approve the strategic plan sometime after the final session set for June 8, a plan that will include follow-ups with reports and timelines for progress.
These discussions don’t necessarily have to lead to new programs, Nickels said; these could be things the school district does already but need to be emphasized or grown.
“We won’t throw the baby out with the bathwater if it’s working,” she said.
Nickels said the first two meetings, Jan. 12 and Jan. 26, were well-attended, with 52 at the first session and 60 at the second.
“We were really pleased that we sustained the interest and had some new folks come out,” Nickels said. “We’re interested in seeing alumni come out [to help advise] what the workforce needs are in the future.”
At the Jan. 26 meeting, Nickels said attendees studied global trends, and how population shifts, the need for global competencies (such as bilingualism) and the effects of aging population leading to a multi-generational workforce.
“We want to have students educated enough so that they can make choices … [and] make school as relevant as possible, as early as possible,” Nickels said.
Attendees walk away from each session with a bit of homework, Nickels said; that can be to simply watch a video and record their reactions based on talking prompt.
Those interested can also click on a banner at the Sequim School District website (sequimschools.org) to view past discussion videos and talking points.
“We’d love to engage people in what we’re talking about,” she said.
Turnout for the first two meetings included students from upper elementary through high school ages.
“Adults have really valued what the kids are experiencing and are hopeful for,” Nickels said.
She said she’s also hoping to form an alumni panel to further discussion about workforce needs.
“[We’ll talk about] how do we become nimble enough to match those needs,” Nickels said.
RSVPs are appreciated but not required at the sessions, which include refreshments.
“[These are] very fun and active,” Nickels said.
The remaining schedule includes:
• Thursday, Feb. 9 — Workforce Readiness and Skills for the Future
• Thursday, March 2 — Identifying 21st Century Competencies
• Thursday, March 16 — Portrait of a Graduate, Competencies, Integrated with District Goals
• Thursday, April 13 — Vision to Mission: Competencies and S.W.O.T. (Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats) Analysis
• Thursday, May 11 — Strategic Plan Goals Development and Portrait of a Graduate Logo Creation
• Thursday, May 25 — Strategic Plan Goals Development and Portrait of a Graduate Logo Creation continued
• Thursday, June 8 — Strategic Plan Objectives Development and Portrait of a Graduate Logo Creation
For more information, call the Sequim School District office at 360-582-3260.