#TheirFuture

#TheirFuture

In 2016, more than 2,250 students, parents, teachers and community members took part in #TheirFuture, a series of surveys, discussions and meetings to define and design a modern educational program that meets the needs of today’s students. 

#TheirFuture was a collaborative initiative that involved the entire Warwick Valley community that sought to ensure that all our students receive a strong foundation to learn, lead and find success. It was an exercise that examined the knowledge, skills and character strengths a Warwick Valley graduate will need to achieve purpose and success community and family life. It also defined how learning should take place in our classrooms.  

The North Star 

The input we received from our students, parents, teachers and community members were used to create our North Star, a 1015 word vision statement that specifies the cognitive, personal and interpersonal competencies we want our students to have when they graduate. 

Writing the North Star helped us reveal and affirm the culture of learning, growth and enjoyment that we seek to develop in our district. It connects overtly to our district’s mission, vision, unique school environment and academic program. It places an emphasis on relationships, experiential learning, student choice, group collaboration and the development of enduring academic, interpersonal and critical thinking skills. 

This document was made possible through community collaboration. By working together to think about the attributes and habits that should be developed by a Warwick Valley education, we have created an important touchstone that will be used for years to come. 

Read the district’s North Star here. 

Portrait of a Graduate

Warwick Valley teachers and administrators are in the process of designing a “Portrait of a Graduate”, an illustration that articulates the community’s aspirations for all students.  Inspired and informed by feedback from #TheirFuture, the Portrait of a Graduate will become the district’s visual representation of its priority goals for teaching and learning.  The design process will continue over the course of the 2020-21 school year. More information about the portrait will be shared as soon as it is available.

Ongoing Assessments 

Data is used to help our educators improve and achieve to meet our students’ specific needs. Each school is supported in the district’s efforts through ongoing professional development. Key benchmarks related to academics, social and emotional wellness and career and life skills are also used to monitor progress. 

What is #TheirFuture?

#TheirFuture is a multi-year, district-wide initiative that aims to redesign the district’s curriculum that is more hands on, relevant and experimental – and more importantly – is derived from the feedback of the entire school community.

  • In 2016, we asked teachers, students, parents and community members to provide their thoughts on what attributes would create a strong learning program for today’s students. We took that feedback and used it to create the district’s North Star.
  • In 2017, we began to familiarize ourselves with the concepts behind Unit by Design, an educational frameworks which emphasizes the teacher’s role as the designer of student learning and helps them craft effective and engaging lessons and activities.
  • In 2018, we incorporated project-based learning techniques into our curriculum design. Project-based learning is a dynamic approach to teaching in which students explore real-world problems and challenges. With this type of engaged learning, students are inspired to obtain a deeper knowledge of the subjects they’re studying.
  • In 2019, we began and will continue to implement phases of our new curriculum.
  • In 2020 and beyond, we will continue to use data help our educators improve, achieve and meet our students’ specific needs.