A referendum is about community; communities make decisions about the level of quality they are willing to support for their schools. Strong communities have strong schools.
Our community has told us what it values when it comes to education: our high quality teachers and support staff, small class sizes, smaller schools, and consistent school start times, among many other benefits Bloomington Public Schools provides.
What has BPS done to raise educational quality and opportunities for children since the 2007 operating referendum?
2016: Moved to a teacher-led model in curriculum development and technology integration.
2015: Expanded Next Technologies for Learning (NTL) to include student Personal Growth Plans.
2015: Opened Bloomington Career & College Academy as part of an integrated workforce development system. The program is a partnership between BPS, City of Bloomington, Hennepin County, State of MN, businesses and higher education.
2014: Implemented Next Technologies for Learning (NTL), which focuses on digital content and anytime, anywhere learning, including a one-to-one device initiative. Student devices have changed the way teaching and learning takes place, with more immediate feedback for students and staff; teachers no longer tethered to their computers at the front of the classroom; increased organization with all student work in one place; and increased student engagement.
2014: Implemented Safe & Security Plan, which includes state-of-the-art security systems and safety improvements in all schools and expanded crisis response training for all district staff.
2014: Introduced all-day kindergarten for all students to expand our nationally recognized early childhood (EC) programming. The district evolved from a traditional K-12 system to an EC-postsecondary system.
2013: Middle schools began offering Project Lead the Way courses, a research-based program that integrates science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
2013: Valley View Middle School began offering Nobel, an honors humanities curriculum focusing on critical thinking and creativity, as an expansion of our innovative Gifted & Talented programming.
2013: Introduced the Pathways to Graduation framework and vision to provide learning milestones and monitoring to ensure students stay on track for graduation.
2013: Our community supported the 2013 Technology and Safety & Security capital projects levy.
2013: Opened Dimensions Academy High School (DAHS) as an extension of our innovative Gifted & Talented programming, from elementary through high school.
2011: Added intervention specialist positions throughout the district to provide additional support to students who need it most.
2010: Developed a Right Sizing the Budget financial plan and addressed structural deficits so that going forward we could sustain excellence in the face of declining state and federal funding. State funding has not kept pace with inflationary increases for more than 10 years.
2007: Our community renewed its commitment to excellence by passing the 2007 operating and technology levy.
2006: Implemented Q-Comp (teacher performance pay) and established student-achievement focused goals tied to teacher compensation.