In 2006, then Superintendent Dale McVey challenged Hilliard City Schools' high school administrators to create the high school of the future.
This challenge began a multiyear process, which shaped the programming and curriculum for a decade and launched the 2020 plan, a strategic vision to determine the knowledge, skills and education experiences students will need to compete globally in the 21st century.
Today, more than a decade after the first planning meeting, we reflect on the 2020 vision and celebrate the accomplishments of the last decade.
The district is nearly 70 percent larger, significantly more ethnically diverse and increasingly more economically diverse than it was in 2010. The 2020 plan has served us well; it has been our guidepost through an era of rapid and significant change.
The needs of our students continue to evolve and the skills required for students to be successful in the future demand more from our schools.
Over the past decade, the district's technology task force set the course for a complete One-2-One iPad initiative.
This intentional plan, created through the collaborative work of more than 100 parents, teachers, students and community members, served as a map as district leaders strategically implemented the rollout of more than 16,500 iPads to students in grades K to 12.
Beginning with our sixth-grade buildings, teachers were provided professional development in advance of students receiving their devices.
The district systematically moved each year to include middle schools, high schools and eventually elementary schools in the One-2-One program.
Furthermore, again in a collaborative process, the district shifted to Canvas as its learning-management system. Canvas, the LMS utilized by Ohio State University, Ohio University and most other Ohio universities, is a powerful tool to provide blended-learning opportunities for Hilliard students while also preparing them for success. The 2020 plan set the vision, and the district has met the challenge.
District leaders continued to expand world-language offerings required for success in a globally interdependent world.
The continued expansion of our Chinese-language programs is a testament to the commitment in this area. Our elementary schools also have held yearlong programs to bring the Chinese and Arabic languages to elementary students. The first year of American Sign Language at the Innovation Campus was so successful that a second teacher has been added for the 2018-19 school year.
Communication in the 21st century is essential for success, and we are meeting the challenge.
The district also has expanded STEM offerings throughout the curriculum with a focus on female students. The Women in Engineering program creates ongoing opportunities for young ladies to meet with role models and explore careers and experiences to spark interest in engineering careers.
Through Naviance, Hilliard students have a powerful program to explore their interests, link to careers of the future and plan educational opportunities. The 2020 plan set the vision, and the district has met the challenge.
District leaders know we can't do it alone. It truly takes a community to prepare the next generation of American leaders. These are all our children; working together we create a brighter future for Hilliard and central Ohio.
To this end, our Parent U programs are designed to both communicate district initiatives and engage parents in essential topics facing families today. From holding Growth Mindset workshops for parents to partnering with Syntero to conduct workshops about mental-health issues, district personnel walk hand-in-hand with the community. Our numerous administrative committees create ongoing, scheduled opportunities for intentional sharing and planning.
The 2020 plan set the mark for business and community partnerships.
With the assistance of Tolles Career & Technical Center and now our Innovation Campus, the district continues to expand both mentorship opportunities and technical training for students.
Knowing that not every career will demand a four-year degree, district leaders strive to personalize the educational experience to prepare each individual student with the knowledge and skills required for success. Success isn't limited to attending college – it is focused on individual preparation for college, the military or the workforce.
Furthermore, each year Hilliard students continue to earn more college credits through partnerships with Columbus State Community College and our College JumpStart program. Housed at the Innovation Campus, this two-year program gives juniors and seniors the chance to earn up to 30 college credits while still in high school – at no charge to parents.
Though College JumpStart has expanded, we haven't experienced a decrease in Advanced Placement tests.
In fact, we've had record numbers of students take AP exams and earn scores of 3, 4 or 5 on the test.
The 2020 plan set the vision, and the district has met the challenge.
The visionary and strategic 2020 plan has set Hilliard apart from other public school districts.
Our Innovation Campus, which now serves approximately 2,000 students per day, is a model for other districts across the country.
Our One-2-One has earned national recognition.
Our partnership with Focus 3 and commitment to culture prepares students with the skills to respond to life's challenges.
On Thursday, , Oct. 25, we will celebrate the success of the 2020 vision at the annual State of the Schools event to be held at 6 p.m. at Heritage Golf Club, 3525 Heritage Club Drive, and in partnership with the Hilliard Area Chamber of Commerce.
We invite residents to hear more specifics about where we have been and the amazing progress the district has made over the past decade.
The address also will serve as a preview of the next 10 years. We aren't done – we are just getting started.
Though there is time for joy and celebration, our work also demands we focus on a new goal. How do district leaders plan to set a vision for the next 10 years? What will be required of students from 2020 to 2030? We hope residents will join us at the State of the Schools to get a glimpse of the future.
Hilliard City Schools Superintendent John Marschhausen writes the Hilliard Schools Connection guest column for the ThisWeek Hilliard Northwest News.