Santa Ana Pathways Magazine Sept./Oct. 2017

P ATH W AYS

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S A N TA A N A U N I F I E D S C H OO L D I S T R I C T

Student Celine Oezkan

Site Clerk Cuca Fernandez

SAUSD supporters

“I Pledge” Campaign Launches in SAUSD While the school year started with students wondering where their classroom was and who they would sit next to at lunch, SAUSD officials also asked students to look ahead and think about the first day of school next year and the year after that.

THE “I PLEDGE” CAMPAIGN LAUNCH INCLUDED: • Teachers and staff at each school taking the pledge in support of their commitment to graduate from high school with opportunities for college and a career.

“I Pledge” campaign’s goal is to encourage students to look ahead and set goals to make sure they graduate on time and have opportunities for college and career. To illustrate the importance of education in their lives, many administrators and staff members wore shirts from their alma mater, favorite college, or a trade profession (police, firefighters, chefs, mechanics, military, etc.) during the campaign launch. Parents and community partners will have an opportunity to join the district in taking the pledge. To find out how, visit www.sausd.us .

Students across the district were asked to take a pledge on the first day of the school year, a pledge to stay in school until graduation day and to plan for the future. The “I Pledge” campaign though is not just a commitment by students to stay in school, it’s also a promise to students and their families that Santa Ana Unified is committed to seeing them cross the stage to receive their diplomas. The

• A sticker for each student that included their graduation year.

• An opportunity for students to recite “I Pledge” with a commitment to graduate from high school.

Superintendent Dr. Stefanie Phillips Shares Plans for District Progress

She relayed that for the past year, the district had a 93% graduation rate, the dropout rate fell to 4.3%, and the district’s operating budget deficit had been reduced by $30 million dollars! Phillips noted that for the third year in a row, Math scores had risen by 3% and ELA numbers were up by 4%. It was also noted that in grade three alone, DIBEL rose 5%. Phillips then shared her desire to build on these successes through the idea of leading through “Servant Leadership.” She defines the idea as “Putting your team’s needs above your own. But, not to the detriment of the long term mission.” She sees Servant Leadership standing across three pillars: How does it look? Why is it important? Who is responsible? These concepts are in turn supported by leaders who possess several key skills - Listening, Empathy, Healing, Awareness, Persuasion, Conceptualization, Foresight, Stewardship, Commitment to Growth, and Building Community. While this is where she would like the district to be, Phillips recognizes that work must be done. Work that is not always easy, but that is still achievable with the right

focus. As she shared: “Effective leadership is not about style or personality but about substance and character. Character is doing the right thing because it’s the right thing, not because it’s popular.” Phillips believes that the district can achieve its goals by, in part, following the three c’s - Classroom, Community, and Connectedness. While students will be the most likely group served by Servant Leaders, she sees the full “audience” as actually rather varied. There will be Customers (which includes students as well as parents), Employees, Owners (a group comprised of community stakeholders), and Suppliers (external partners). Phillips also took the opportunity to unveil the “I Pledge” campaign. This campaign, which rolled out district-wide on the first day of the school year, is a commitment among students, educators, and parents. While students pledge to remain in school until they graduate, Phillips asked those on the other side of the classroom to pledge a commitment to each student, to support colleagues, parents, and community partners, and to being the best they can be every day.

Dr. Phillips speaks to symposium attendees.

A hum of excitement and anticipation hung over the assembled crowd at the Saddleback High School Forum on August 3, 2017. Over 250 administrators from across the district had gathered together for the annual SAUSD leadership symposium. On this, the first day of the two-day event, the crowd anxiously awaited a presentation from Superintendent Dr. Stefanie Phillips. When she took the stage, she delivered a powerful presentation during which she laid out her vision for moving the district forward. Before she could share her plan for where the district could go though, she let those in attendance know the current “state of affairs.”

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