Each month, Dr. Zorn reaches out to our business community via the Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce newsletter with information about the successes and challenges of our public schools.

On Friday, October 27, the Longview Pubic Schools conducted its annual strategic plan review process, which culminated in three teams made up of community, staff, and school board members visiting our district’s schools. These tours are designed to allow committee members firsthand insight into the action steps being taken by each of our schools to meet the goals that are outlined in each schools’ improvement plans. Our schools’ goals are built around two districtwide goals:

  1. Improved student achievement levels, and
  2. Improved climate and culture.

These goals focus on achievement in Reading and Mathematics with a district wide emphasis on improving our district’s graduation rates.

We believe literacy is the most important thing we do. To that end, we are focused on improving literacy levels of all students and challenging our teachers, regardless of grade level or content area, to provide rigorous reading and writing opportunities each day. All teachers share in the responsibility of assuring our students read and write effectively and are able to engage in intelligent and critical discourse.

Additionally, we seek to improve instruction through:

  1. Adherence to clear and rigorous curricular standards,
  2. Providing quality instruction, and
  3. Providing effective feedback.

Our school improvement plans assure the three instructional focus areas are priorities and our delivery of these ideals is always improving. We recognize that we have much work to do to improve student achievement levels and that the quality of our focus and the clarity of our actions will have a tremendous impact on our students’ future success.

Our school improvement plans are also reflective of our belief that the high school diploma is our student’s first ticket to success. Graduation rates are driven, in part, by the degree to which we are able to provide a positive, caring, and nurturing climate and culture for the students we serve. The relationships we build with students and the relevance and responsiveness of the curricular and extra-curricular opportunities we provide are of paramount importance in our efforts to improve graduation rates. We embrace our responsibility to provide a system that is responsive to the needs of the students we serve.

I am grateful for the community members who are volunteering their time to provide an audience for the sharing of our school and district improvement efforts. Together we have the best opportunity to provide the excellent education each of our students deserve.