Rewriting the masterplan

Associate principal Sara Genetin-Pilawa explains what the superintendent change means for Jefferson


Karen Bolt/FCPS

Superintendent Michelle Reid tours an elementary school as part of her research process for the county’s strategic plan.

Lucas Ribeiro, Team Leader

Since assuming office on July 1, superintendent Michelle Reid shaped her vision for the county through community conversations and surveys. These, along with recommendations from focus teams and insights from school visits, will shape Reid’s strategic plan.

“A strategic plan is typically like a five year vision or trajectory. It’s sort of the superintendents campaign, so to speak. It’s a research based process,” Genetin-Pilawa said. “And so they do gather that information from the public. The stakeholder groups, students—all of those voices need to play a role in this.”

Although core philosophies are expected to remain the same, the new strategic plan, which should be completed by June 2023, will result in some change in direction for the school. 

“Globally, any change in leadership is going to have an impact, so our new superintendent coming in is going to have a lot of philosophies about how she envisions FCPS,”  Genetin-Pilawa said. “In terms of our [current] strategic planning, we have a theory of action: the three A’s are affirm, assess, advance. These drive leadership and staff development here in school and across FCPS. I don’t anticipate things like that to change.” 

Genetin-Pilawa appreciates the time that Reid is taking to understand the school district and its intricacies. 

 “One [good practice] in terms of approaching leadership is not going in and changing everything right at the beginning. Go observe and see what’s working well, what’s not working well and why,” Genetin-Pilawa said. “She’s in that fact finding stage and using the strategic planning process to do the investigation she needs to do in order to build that vision.”

Throughout this planning process, Reid has kept the interests of Jefferson in mind. 

“[Reid] made Jefferson one of her top priorities for a school visit when she was doing the town halls. She’s coming back for a visit in January and plans to walk through the school, so that’ll be two visits in one school year, which is giving quite a good showing for Jefferson,” Genetin-Pilawa said.