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Strategic Commitments

Strategic Plan

Our Strategic Commitments

Each year, Ferndale School Board meets to review the previous year’s success in the areas of progress and areas of greatest need, and establish future directions for Ferndale School District. In light of their dialogue, board members made minor revisions to their previous five strategic commitments and added a sixth commitment focused on safety.

Implemented August 2011, last reviewed and revised March 2021

Overarching all of our work and providing the lens through which we evaluate all of our decisions, we are committed to safeguarding equity and equal opportunity.

We believe our district cannot be truly excellent if it is not also equitable. In a democratic society built on values of fairness and justice, the concept of educational excellence must encompass not only high-quality educational opportunities for each and every student, but also high-level outcomes for each and every one.

We are committed:

In addition to the commitments, the school board adopted some beliefs related to facilities. They are—

  • Physical safety is always a top priority.
  • School buildings/facilities are tools that either enhance or detract from student learning.
  • Personalization is an important component of quality education. Small school size is one way to achieve personalization; but there are also other ways.
  • Small is a relative concept. A middle school of 400 can be too small to run a comprehensive program. An elementary school of 600 can be small enough when the physical layout includes “pods” or “houses” and the common spaces allow for multiple lunch periods and recesses.
  • The most economical size for an elementary school is between 500 and 600.
  • Active learning is an important component of quality education. Students learn by doing.
  • In order to serve all students well at the high school level, we need to provide a variety of high school options including some that are non-traditional. Windward is a small high school option that we plan to continue.
  • To create neighborhood schools and reduce transportation, elementary schools located on both the North Bellingham campus and the Custer campus would be most desirable.
  • The wise expenditure of public funds involves short and long-range planning.Sometimes the quickest and/or cheapest fix is not the best solution.
  • Community stakeholders need to be provided with information about school programs, finances, and facilities needs; and they need to be provided with opportunities for input. The school board needs to listen to the input and then make the final decision they believe will best serve the learning needs of all children.