GAPS lays out community survey process
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GAPS lays out community survey process

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Greater Albany Public Schools district office.

Greater Albany Public Schools Superintendent Melissa Goff submitted her work to the board on Monday to be evaluated for the first time since she was hired last summer. 

The board set just two goals for the superintendent, given that the evaluation schedule would see her before the board with only half of the school year under her belt. 

Goff highlighted her work in public engagement and focused on the board's goal to integrate principals of cultural competency and equitable practice to promote the success of every student. 

In the fall, GAPS held 17 focus groups and sent out surveys to parents and community members to identify what the community felt the district was doing well and how it could improve. The effort was part of a larger campaign to receive additional funds from the state through the Student Success Act. Each district must submit a strategic plan to the state outlining how the money would be spent. 

However, GAPS's effort, Goff told the board, worked to include historically underrepresented groups within the community. 

The data the outreach garnered is currently being compiled and will be presented to the board at its next meeting. Once the data is public, Goff and GAPS administration will return to the groups it first engaged with. 

"We're going to collect reaction from our stakeholder groups," she said. "What we're looking for is, 'Do you hear your voice reflected in our summary of the data?'" 

Goff also said the data would return to the board desegregated, meaning that, rather than showing that 80% of students are on track, for example, the data would show the percentage of different subsets of students based on race, class and other factors. 

GAPS board chair Jennifer Ward said she had known Goff was anxious to get these projects off the ground when she arrived in GAPS and had to contend with a fire at South Albany High School, a Norovirus outbreak and other incidents. 

"Without those things," Ward said, "this would have still been impressive." 

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