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Message from the Superintendent

Wow - I can’t believe it is November already! I continue to visit and meet with students, families, staff, and community each week to learn about our district. There are so many exciting things going on across the district right now and I’d like to highlight our largest initiative which is launching this month - strategic planning!

Imagine Tomorrow Together

We are seeking to chart a new vision for the future of public education in our district. This vision will serve as a true ‘north star,’ guiding and aligning all of the district’s plans and innovations. We invite our entire community to join us as we “imagine tomorrow together” through a series of opportunities.

First, on Saturday, November 16 from 4-6 p.m., we are holding a “Student Summit” with our high school students. At the summit, we want to learn about their experiences in our schools and re-imagine what education can look like for them here in Santa Clara Unified that will enable students to be even more successful in their lives.

Next, I invited about 90 stakeholders — parents, students, educators, community leaders, business leaders, and elected officials — to serve on our “Guiding Coalition.” The Guiding Coalition is our visioning steering committee, tasked with contributing ideas, perspectives, expertise, and experience that will inform the creation of our long-term vision through a series of design sessions, learning journeys, and community meetings. These sessions will be facilitated by consultants Prospect Studio and will include explorations of the future of Silicon Valley and SCUSD, and the connected needs of our students, schools, and educators.

Together we will learn about the forces shaping the education landscape across the United States. We will consider the future of learning through the eyes of students, educators, and policymakers. We will identify existing seeds of transformation and visit extraordinary present-day examples, both inside and outside SCUSD. Drawing from all that we’ve learned, including input from the entire community, we will use design and innovation practices to develop a vision of success for our public schools and students — the essence of a diverse and educationally rich Santa Clara Unified School District of the future.

Finally, there were will be many, many opportunities for ALL stakeholders to provide their input to the coalition and planning through community meetings taking place in December and January (date will be announced soon!) and at a community presentation on March 28, 2020, at the district’s annual STEAM Expo.

Next month, look for an update from me about my experience covering Westwood Elementary School Paraprofessional Jackie Hall's job for a day. I’m looking forward to spending the day in her shoes and with her students. I can’t wait to tell you all about it!


Stella M. Kemp
Stella M. Kemp, Ed.D.