Last week I found myself carefully exploring the details of the LCFF (Local Control Funding Formula) and the LCAP (Local Control Accountability Plan). How’s that for an engaging hook for a blog post?
The formula itself is somewhat interesting, as there are several variables in play that impact how much money is allotted to each district each year, but I started to get a bit lost in the midst of all of the numbers. After trying to wrap my head around the formula and the variables for a while, I was told by a wise mentor not to worry about memorizing it, but to simply know it well enough to use as a reference when needed. Done.
One of the things that stands out about the LCFF and LCAP as opposed to previous funding models is the regular need to engage all stakeholders (students, families, staff, and community members) getting input at various stages of the process. The “Local” flavor of both the LCFF and the LCAP requires that each school has a good read on the particular needs and desires of those most affected by the funds (i.e. the locals). At my school this stakeholder input has been gathered through a series of community meetings as well as surveys sent out to students and parents. I think these methods have been fairly effective but I wonder what other ways we could use to gather more input (or input from more stakeholders).
One of my goals this term has been to extend the reach of our school announcements outside the walls of the classroom. I’ve been testing a model in which the regular 3-5 minute audio announcements (that have been piped over the loudspeakers during 2nd block for as long as I can remember) are translated into a format that will work on Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook and youtube. This video version of the announcements is posted to all four social channels, as well as the home page of the school website, each morning. We’re only two weeks into the experiment but I’ve received several comments from parents who are excited about being able to be more informed and involved. I think our audience will grow quite quickly once we start promoting it well.
The need to gather input from stakeholders got me thinking about this new social announcement model. I wonder about using these social channels to develop connections with the community and then reaching out over these connections to gather more “local” input that will help shape the LCAP in the future. I think there’s some great potential there.