Planning ROBS Future

June 1, 2019 — River Oaks Baptist School has been around for more than 60 years. In those 60 years, our mission has never changed. We promise to prepare students to meet life’s challenges and lead tomorrow’s world through a superior academic program rooted in Christian principles. This mission is the unchanging compass that sets the direction for our School. If we want to prepare our kids for tomorrow’s world, then we have to be forward-thinking. This is why ROBS is progressive, research-based, and always evolving.

But how do we access our past and set common goals for the future as a community of over 1,200 students, parents, faculty, and staff? And, how do we ensure we are all moving in lockstep toward our shared goals?

I’m so glad you asked.

Strategic Planning

We do a lot of thinking, and then planning, and then executing. And then we do it again. We call it strategic planning. Strategic planning is an ongoing pledge to uphold our mission by refining our methods.

The strategic plan will serve as our playbook for the next three years. It’s our guide for envisioning transformation and inspiring each and everyone at ROBS to reach new heights. Think of it as us reimagining the “how to” of our mission.

How does the process work?

Listening, Listening, and more Listening
Because the strategic plan should reflect a shared vision, everyone in the ROBS community was invited participate. We work hard to give everyone a voice in the plan. We do this in three ways: strategic brainstorming sessions, listening sessions, and an online survey sent to all community members.

Strategic Thinking Retreat
The primary goal of the Strategic Thinking Retreat was to take all of the great feedback and suggestions gathered during those listening sessions to create a list of specific strategic priorities. Once complete, the ROBS Administrative Team uses historial and comparative data to develop action items. Team leads are assigned to oversee the execution of the final plan.

Where are we now?

Over the last few months, we have heard from parents, employees, board members, alumni, church members, and students about their vision for ROBS’ future. The four strategic priorities that came out of these discussions were consistent across the groups.

  1. Differentiation: How do we adapt subject area content, teaching processes, classroom tools, and the learning environment to stretch each learner to her full potential?
  2. Diversity & Inclusion: How do we promote, support, and nurture a culture of inclusivity for diverse families?
  3. Wellness: How do we advance programming that promotes emotional, intellectual, physical, environmental, social, occupational, and social wellness?
  4. Programming: How do we accomplish the above initiatives recognizing the practical limits of time and space?

These priorities were not a surprise to me. We know our children are over-scheduled, over-stimulated, over-worked, and overly exposed to unkindness through social media and the societal influences and messages they receive daily. We have to do something to course-correct and protect our children while providing them an education that will allow them to succeed in this very complex world. These priorities position ROBS to support our students’ academic and spiritual growth in the healthiest way we can.

What’s next?

This summer the Administrative Team will flesh out the above initiatives with actionable goals and a projected timeline. I have challenged the team to approach the next phase of the strategic planning process with a design thinking mindset. In fact, we will use an assignment from my Stanford d. School Creative Catalyst Cohort as our guide. Once complete, we will present a full report to the ROB Board of Trustees for review and approval.

Closing Thoughts

The power of the ROBS community never ceases to amaze me. At this very moment, bulldozers and cranes are outside my window working on our new Middle School building, leadership center, and underground parking garage—the physical culmination of the 2013 strategic plan. Your gifts of time, talent and treasure have brought us this far, and they will continue to propel us forward.

“Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers, they succeed.”

Proverbs 15:22


Leanne Reynolds

ROBS Head of School

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