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Elisabeth Barrow

elisabeth.barrow@clawsonschools.org
248-655-3846

Clawson Public Schools
Purpose and Communication Plan
December 9, 2015

Overview
After reading Alan Blankstein’s book Failure is Not an Option and Reframing Organizations by Lee
Bolman and Terrence Deal, I am recommending the following action plan for Clawson Public
Schools. Through careful reflection about our district as a whole using both Blankstein’s six
principals and looking through Bolman and Deal’s four frames, a few common themes kept
appearing. One is that we need set processes for decision making, especially when it comes to
reviewing curriculum to ensure both vertical and horizontal alignment. We also need clearly
defined roles in the district so people know who is responsible for what and when. Most
importantly, however, as a district communicate we need to strengthen communication with
each other and all stakeholders. The following are my recommendations for moving our district
forward in communicating who we are and what we do.

Goals
1. Create new district mission, vision, values and goals: Through work on the District
School Improvement Team, I will help create and lead all stakeholders through the
process of creating new, purposeful guiding documents that help to clarify what
Clawson Public Schools is all about.

2. District-Wide Communication: Clearly outline what types of information need to be
shared throughout the district, who is responsible for sharing the information, and how
often it needs to be shared. Create a quarterly digital interactive magazine to showcase
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what is going on throughout the district that will be posted on the district website as
well as emailed to all staff and parents. Work with the District Marketing committee
as needed to integrate efforts to brand Clawson Public Schools with the District School
Improvement Team’s goals.
3. Website: Analyze current website for ease of use, uniformity, and importance of
information being presented. Meet with Steve Melchor to propose changes and follow
up with suggesting for content changes as needed.

Rationale
As a small district we have a unique opportunity to respond to new challenges quickly. The past
few years have brought on a slew of new initiatives, programs, and with those things, added
stress to staff who already have full plates. With the start of a new school improvement cycle it
is time to get out of “survival mode” and reestablish who and what Clawson Public Schools is all
about and then find a way to share that with the outside community, and celebrate our
uniqueness within. A new vision, mission, values, and goals will help guide us and give us a
sense of purpose that we haven’t had in quite some time.

We have fantastic staff members who go above and beyond for students but often their efforts
are not always recognized or realized. There is no reason that with only five buildings in the
district that anyone should have questions about what happens in each of them. A
communication plan that aims to clarify and streamline what goes on between the buildings will
help bridge the gaps between the buildings and help our district become more unified around a
common goal. When all stakeholders know what is going on, they are more likely to support
our programs and become involved. With declining enrollment it is also imperative that we
promote our programs and successes to the community at large and show what an amazing
place Clawson Public Schools is to work and learn in.

Milestones
1. District Mission, Vision, Values, Goals
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A new mission, vision, values, and goals will be created with input from all
stakeholders by the end of the 2015-2016. The new guiding principles will be rolled
out in the 2016-2017 school year with help from the District Marketing committee.

2. District-Wide Communication
A document outlining the types of information that needs to be shared will be created
during the 2015-2016 school year. People responsible for sharing information will be
contacted as necessary to ensure communication happens regularly. A digital
interactive newsletter will be published quarterly starting in February, 2016 with other
issues following in June, September, and December 2016.

3. Website
The district website will be updated and streamlined by the end of the 2015-2016 school
year. It will be revised as needed in future years.