Most importantly, the district has a renewed focus on improving teacher quality. Our teachers are evaluated more regularly. We have revived the Peer Assistance and Review program that enrolls teachers most in need of improvement to address areas of concern. Administrators also have a new tool: student and parent surveys.
Surveys are also part of efforts to improve two-way communication. To this end, the school board and district are moving into social media, and will be unveiling an improved website soon, as well as many other tools for keeping in touch and soliciting feedback.
In tandem with these communication efforts, the district is striving to make operations more transparent. This superintendent has made her annual goals public — an important document that empowers the community to hold us accountable. We are also creating simpler tools for understanding our budget online, and expect to have all school board agendas and materials online by this summer.
Of course, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Even with fewer resources, we know it's hard-earned money and extra contributions can't just translate into more of the same. So in addition to helping us preserve small class sizes, readers should know we are committed to providing an ever-improving service.
I am so grateful for the community's ongoing support, and hope residents will consider making contributions to the La Cañada school district today at http://lcfef.org.
La Cañada Flintridge
Editor's note: The writer is a member of the La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board.