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District's consulting interviews continue this week in Dixon

Decision could be made next month

Published: Wednesday, May 28, 2014 1:15 a.m. CST

DIXON – The Dixon School Board and district staff started their interview with a potential strategic planning consultant with some hashtags.

Daniel Meyer, of the Urbandale, Iowa-based Reach for Excellence Educational Consultants Inc., made his pitch to head up the district’s strategic planning during a special meeting Tuesday night.

The district interviewed the first of three candidates last week and will interview the final candidate at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the district’s central office, 1335 Franklin Grove Road, before it will likely vote on which to hire in June.

“What are your hopes, your dreams, your visions? What do you want for a better tomorrow for your students, for your neighbor’s students?,” Meyer said to start his presentation. “What do you want the community of Dixon to be like in the future?”

Meyer then had the School Board and district staff present to write those dreams or visions down – as hashtags – and grouped them together on a board. It was an example of the type of exercise he would do with a small groups of school district stakeholders, he said, if chosen to lead the strategic planning.

Meyer, whose company is a one-man show, spent 34 years in education as a teacher, coach and administrator, he said, before starting his consulting company.

The timeline Meyer discussed Tuesday night could take about 18 to 20 weeks, he said, and includes small meetings with stakeholders, rather than large groups.

Throughout his timeline, Meyer said he would have discussions and reviews with the School Board and was interested in keeping some of the strategic planning task force members, who had reviewed the district’s facilities for about 8 months, involved in the process.

“Strategic planning may or may not achieve the results that you desire to create a quality learning environment for your students,” Meyer said. “... The quality improvement process is a cycle of never-ending evaluation, planning for that continuous improvement.”

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