- Thomas Elementary
Focus on Parent Partnership
Over the past two years Dublin City Schools has received input and feedback from many parents. As a District, we embrace our diversity and build on a shared understanding that we are Better Together - one of our three core values. Being Better Together requires us to care and communicate with our families. Even as one of the largest districts in Ohio, we expect that our schools provide a personalized educational experience for each student. Our neighborhood elementary schools are a foundation that cultivates connections and collaboration with our youngest learners and their families.
Our team listened with purpose to the concerns expressed by parents across the District. A Parent Diversity Committee was formed to identify areas of unity and areas that require more work. We are on a journey together. Our second core value, Always Growing, demands that we do the work necessary to get better each and every day.
This summer, the Board of Education unanimously adopted several policy changes to provide clarity about the partnership between families and our District. In our community, as we celebrate our diversity, we also recognize that Dublin City Schools families have varied perspectives for how some topics are handled in our schools. Our desire is to be respectful of everyone’s values, beliefs, and traditions. This requires openness and active communication.
We have wonderful, talented teachers in our classrooms. Dublin City Schools teachers have always been active partners with parents; this isn’t a change. Our teachers invite parents to talk with them about their child’s reading and social needs. As a district, we celebrate our partnership with parents and strive to personalize the educational experience for each child. As we’ve amended our policies, we are asking parents, if they have a concern, to first talk with their classroom teacher. In most situations, a phone conversation can bring clarity and resolution.
We’ve also updated Board Policies Student Supervision and Welfare (3213), and Controversial Issues (2240). In each case, our purpose is to bring clarity to each policy for our parents and professional staff.
Our team worked through these new policies with several complaints about instructional materials - specifically some media center books. A committee of District literacy experts, including media specialists, reviewed each complaint. When evaluating media center materials the team uses the American Library Association (ALA) and the School Library journal (SLJ) as a national “benchmark” for appropriateness by age/grade level. The District experts also use their expertise, along with the ALA/SLJ designation, to determine book placement. Our team reviewed dozens of books; here are the placement decisions reached by the literacy team that reviewed the books - LINK.
Open communication is critical in a high performing school district; trust is essential in building a strong culture. If you have any questions about our partnership with parents, amendments to Board Policies, or the book review process, please join Superintendent Dr. John Marschhausen on Monday, Sept. 19 from 6:30-8 p.m. at Emerald Campus for a Community Conversation - Policies and Instructional Materials. Dr. Marschhausen will have a brief explanation of each policy, share the book review process, and answer any questions from the audience. Representatives from the Board of Education will also attend the conversation to hear from our community.