Falcon 49 Parents, Teachers, District Leaders Convene Around Innovation

Has it really been a whole month since I wrote about the Falcon 49 innovation plan — not to mention the Cookie Monster? Time flies. Next thing you know, I’ll blink and turn 6.

Anyway, over the weekend, we saw one of the first promising signs that the district’s innovative reform is gaining traction. The Colorado Springs Gazette reports on a gathering of key players in the Vista Ridge community:

Teachers, parents and district employees at the district’s first “Innovation Convention” mulled110 ideas including tapping Google for online tools including e-mail, changing teacher evaluations and scheduling more time for planning and collaboration.

As Falcon pursues streamlining the administration and bringing power down to the building level, these conventions can play a critical role in making the schools more productive, responsive and focused on student needs. Yes, one meeting doesn’t begin to solve every problem. But among other things it does get the process rolling toward identifying specific waivers that should be requested under the Innovation Schools Act — such as costly job protections for ineffective teachers.

Innovation Conventions for the other two zones (Falcon and Sand Creek) are scheduled for this week. Making positive change seldom is easy, or so my mom and dad say. I don’t know if they had Falcon District 49’s innovation plan in mind, but it’s good to see this process moving forward. Here’s to doing the best we can to ensure it results in greater flexibility to meet the needs of students and provide academic excellence.