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Portrait of a Graduate

Updated September 7th, 2022

Summary of Strategic Plan 

Spanish Summary of Strategic Plan

SPS Strategic Plan Draft

District Moves Forward With Community’s Vision
for Student Success

September 7, 2022 - 
The Barr Foundation has awarded Springfield Public Schools (SPS) $650,000 to move forward the community’s vision for student success. The “Portrait of a Graduate” (POG) work began three years ago, and the resulting vision has become the north star for the school’s ongoing transformation.

The Barr Foundation’s Portrait of a Graduate cohort was launched in 2019 following a request for proposals. The goal was to identify communities interested in building a community-driven Portrait of a Graduate, which represents a vision of what all students will know and be able to do upon graduation in order to thrive in college, career, and community.

 In 2021, ten of the original fourteen POG communities, which includes SPS, advanced from the initial portrait planning and design phase and were awarded additional grant support to begin taking the first steps to bring their portraits to practice. The district is now entering the next phase to advance equitable student opportunities and outcomes in schools by building out responsive school models that hold the POG as the north star.

  “We are extremely happy to continue our Portrait of a Graduate work with the Barr Foundation and have seen tangible results from our previous grants over the past three years,” said Superintendent of Schools Daniel Warwick. “This work is important, and we remain committed to ensuring all our young people are able to thrive in school and beyond.”

 SPS has named key priorities that will be most impactful for actualizing the portrait and creating more equitable schools. These key priorities center around indicators of school quality and include rigor; relevant, and purposeful learning experiences; high expectations for all students; authentic opportunities for student voice and choice; and intentional systems that ensure all students are known and supported.

 “We are excited to continue to support the communities in the Portrait of a Graduate cohort to reimagine the school experience,” said Ali Gross, program officer at the Barr Foundation. “Springfield has taken an important first steps in developing a collective vision for their graduates and starting to bring that vision to life.”

About the Barr Foundation

The Barr Foundation’s mission is to invest in human, natural, and creative potential, serving as thoughtful stewards and catalysts. Based in Boston, Barr focuses regionally, and selectively engages nationally, working in partnership with nonprofits, foundations, the public sector, and civic and business leaders to elevate the arts, advance solutions for climate change, and connect all students to success in high school and beyond. Founded in 1997, Barr now has assets in excess of $3 billion, and has contributed more than $1 billion to charitable causes.

POG Podcast Cover

Episode 1 - Project-based Learning - what it is and what it means for students and teachers. 

Episode 2 - 
Financial Literacy - how important is it and how the community drove an initiative that introduced Financial Literacy courses into every high school beginning in the 2022-23 school year. 


Portrait of a Graduate
- What is it?

For more than three years, Springfield Public Schools has engaged the community to help build a Portrait of a Graduate – a vision of the skills and attributes SPS students need to find success in college and career. Community input has been a  vital component of the process, which will ultimately guide the creation of the district’s six-year Strategic Plan.  

Superintendent of Schools Daniel Warwick said the development approach for the district’s new Strategic Plan is unlike anything in the past. “We are intentionally looking to expand the thought process around what success looks like for our students,” said Warwick. “We are drilling down past test scores and policies and talking about the attributes that schools need to help foster to set students up for success.”

Warwick said SPS students’ rate of academic improvement is the highest in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, but he emphasized that the achievement gap still exists. The Portrait of a Graduate process will provide an opportunity to outline the community’s values, align work that’s already in place throughout the district, bridge existing gaps, and guide future decision-making, he said.

“We cannot rest on our laurels and we must work even harder to make more gains,” said Warwick. “I know the community will contribute greatly to the future success of our students.”

SPS Portrait of a Graduate work is supported by a grant from the Barr Foundation. Based in Boston, Barr focuses regionally, and selectively engages nationally, working in partnership with nonprofits, foundations, the public sector, and civic and business leaders to elevate the arts, advance solutions for climate change, and connect all students to success in high school and beyond. 



CLICK HERE TO SEE THE PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE DOCUMENT
PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE DOCUMENT - SPANISH
PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE DOCUMENT - ARABIC
PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE DOCUMENT - NEPALI
PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE DOCUMENT - SOMALI
PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE DOCUMENT - VIETNAMESE

 

 




Portrait of a Graduate is on The Community's Choice and BOMBA
Portrait of a Graduate - January 2020 Newsletter, March 2020 Newsletter
Portrait of Graduate May 2022 Update  click here 



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