An Assurance Model for planning means that the Board is committed to determining the level of confidence that our stakeholders have in our system. Assurance provides a framework for the Division to continue maintaining close alignment with the direction and goals of the Ministry, but with a stronger focus on being more responsive to the needs of the Division’s school communities.
The Assurance Model framework enables Parkland School Division to ensure learner success through the following process:
- Develop local goals, strategies and measures that address Divisional priorities focused on ensuring student success
- Develop strategic priorities that align with the Ministry but are more responsive to the needs of the school communities within the Division
- Offer increased opportunities for stakeholder involvement throughout this process
Stakeholder engagement is a critical aspect of the Assurance Model, and helps to build a sense of “assurance” that Parkland School Division is indeed developing a strong educational system that puts student learning at the core of its work while being accountable for the quality of work it is doing.
So, who are our stakeholders?
Participant stakeholders at the Board’s Annual Education Planning Engagement were asked to answer this question.
The consensus provided is that our stakeholders include:
- School division staff
- Community members
- School councils
- Indigenous Elders
And that the above groups may incorporate:
- Senior citizens
- Alberta Education
- Future employers
- Community agencies
- Government agencies
- The RCMP
- Municipal government
- Post-secondary institutions
- ...Even the media.
In one way or another, all members of a functioning society exist as stakeholders in education.
Our planning participants noted the challenge of connecting our students’ learning with extended stakeholders in meaningful ways. Society is rapidly evolving and this change becomes a form of pressure on our schools.
As we plan to achieve our Ultimate Goal of Student Success and Well-being, we will need to address effective ways of bridging perceived ‘gaps’ in communication or involvement from extended stakeholders through meaningful engagement.
In keeping with the School Councils Regulation (113/2007), the Board provided opportunities for School Councils and stakeholders to be involved in this Education Plan:
- Through the daily commitment of our Trustees in engaging our students, staff and community;
- Through the ongoing conversations and engagement that our staff has with students, staff, parents and the community;
- Through School Council meetings and representation at the Council of School Councils;
- Throughout the year at three Student Advisory Committee meetings;
- Through public board meetings; and,
- Through, specific events and activities that were held to facilitate planning, based on a model of assurance, including:
- An annual Stakeholder Engagement Event;
- An annual Stakeholder Education Planning Event;
- An annual Leadership Planning session;
- Superintendent’s Teacher Advisory Team sessions; and,
- Our ThoughtExchange Stakeholder Engagement Process.
Parkland School Division recognizes that every interaction provides an opportunity to learn and grow. The Parkland School Division Board of Trustees remains committed to improving and increasing stakeholder engagement.