Providence Schools

Providence School Board Takes Up Policy on School-Based Autonomy

Providence, R.I. (February 4, 2014) – As part of the strategic direction of the
Providence Public School District articulated by the Providence School Board and
Superintendent Dr. Susan Lusi in recent months, the Board’s policy committee began
last night to refine a draft policy allowing stakeholders at the building level
(administrators, teachers, students, parents and community partners) to take greater
ownership of their school community through autonomous, shared decision-making.

The policy, drafted by Board President Keith Oliveira, focuses on the objective of
creating a high-performing school district that educates all students at high
standards and eliminates the achievement gap. The document describes the transfer of
decision-making authority closest to students to the educators and building leaders
who have the greatest understanding of their strength and needs. It aligns with and
echoes the vision set forth by the Board and the superintendent in August at the
district’s staff convocation, and articulated in the district’s publication,
“Opening Doors.”

“This Board and this administration are taking an aggressive approach to breaking
the traditional mold of top-down decision-making,” said Oliveira. “It is our hope
that the passage of this policy, and associated regulations and practices, will help
to elevate the performance of this district and provide a higher quality education
to every one of our deserving students.”

The Board plans to solicit the feedback of all affected stakeholders – students,
staff, families and community – as it proceeds with refining and eventually passing
this policy.

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