Strategic Plan 2021
A BOLD VISION FOR THE FUTURE
Dear UPrep Community,
One of the most important endeavors a school leader, in conjunction with the board of trustees, can accomplish for a school is to create a strategic plan. The ability to take a forward-thinking vision and turn it into actionable items designed to keep the school on the edge of transformational change is essential.
Last year, I led this visioning process with Trustee Van Katzman, Trustee Jeanette James, and Assistant Head of School for Academics and Strategic Initiatives Richard Kassissieh, in partnership with Greenwich Leadership Partners. All members of the UPrep community— faculty, staff, parents, students, and alumni—participated in surveys and shared valuable feedback that was included in this process. Together, we created Strategic Plan 2021: A Bold Vision for the Future.
During this process, the Strategic Planning Steering Committee created a new, forward-thinking vision for the school. This vision will guide us into our future.
Unlike most strategic plans that have a shelf life of five years, this plan is designed to be reviewed and, if necessary, updated at the yearly UPrep Board of Trustees retreat at the beginning of each school year. As the school grows and changes and as we add new facilities and more innovative programs, we will continue to make sure that the guideposts of this plan meet our needs. I am delighted to present the Strategic Plan 2021 to all of you!
Head of School
Based on feedback from our community, it was clear that our vision statement no longer served as an inspirational, ambitious statement of the long-term goals for our school. It read: University Prep shall be an inclusive community of learners that provides an outstanding education for each individual in a diverse student population.
Our new, more aspirational vision now reads:
University Prep will be the school that redefines educational excellence, in a community where all learners develop the skills, knowledge, and character to thrive in any context.
In addition to a new vision statement, Strategic Plan 2021 identifies five guideposts:
Cultivate a culture of belonging as an essential condition for healthy learning and development.
- Demonstrate increased institutional commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) through the UPrep Board of Trustees and the head of school.
- Deepen DEI education, policies, and practices as they relate to leadership, students, programs, and community.
- Maintain a culture of transparency in communications with employees, students, and families.
- Continue to grow and foster a diversity of backgrounds and perspectives in the community.
- Elevate and develop the skills of cultural competency in the community.
- Further deepen approaches to supporting student mental health and emotional well-being.
- Acknowledge that the college admission process is an individual experience for each student.
Boldly innovate new academic and co-curricular programs and practices to create transformative experiences now and into the future.
- Cultivate innovation as both a mindset and a capacity within UPrep.
- Spotlight the ULab as a symbol of innovation at UPrep.
- Continue to refine the intensive model and communicate its value.
- Design learning experiences that foster critical thinking, agency, leadership, and real-world applications.
- Continue to develop educational opportunities that transcend the walls of UPrep.
- Further develop athletics, arts, and club experiences as the school grows.
Strengthen and evaluate curriculum, pedagogy, and assessment, so that students consistently realize our commitment to educational excellence.
- Strengthen practice and pedagogy and align evaluation processes.
- Align the curriculum from 6th through 12th grade and across subject areas.
- Evaluate graduation requirements in light of emerging subject areas and students’ busy schedules.
- Create more opportunities for students to take curricular risks.
- Assess and refine the current schedule to ensure it best meets the needs of the school.
Strategically develop talent to support strong leadership, excellence in teaching, and organizational capacity.
- Develop further recruitment, engagement, and professional growth opportunities for faculty and staff.
- Formalize training and mentorship programs for prospective and early career teachers.
- Increase and expand growth opportunities for excellence in teaching.
- Create more pathways to leadership within and beyond UPrep.
- Strengthen collaboration in design, instruction, and assessment.
Be intentional about who we are, to further elevate UPrep in the Seattle educational market.
- Articulate and develop an updated marketing strategy that is aligned to our new strategic plan and vision to inform student admissions and employee recruitment and retention.
- Refine the definitions of the Middle School and Upper School.
- Review and refresh our core values as needed.