Superintendent's Entry Plan

Ms. Winter with current ninth graders
Ms. Winter with current ninth graders


Debra Winter

The Springs School District is committed to providing support to ensure that each student has the opportunity to find his or her passion. The district encourages families and community members to become partners in this important work, ensuring all our students are prepared for jobs that do not exist yet and become productive, compassionate human beings. The process is to create ideas for sustaining, building on the good work that is currently happening and strengthening Springs’ distinguished record of success.

The work of Stephen Covey, “Leader in Me” states, Leaders “must first seek to understand then be understood.” My first responsibility will be to understand, “LISTEN, LEARN, and LEAD.”

GOAL 1: To establish and continue the maintenance of quality relationships with the Board of Education, families, teachers, support staff, students and community members

Objective 1: To become acquainted with members of the Board of Education, and gain their perspective of the District’s strengths and challenges.

Procedures: Conduct meetings with each Board member. Discuss expectations roles, needs, establish BOE protocols for executive session agendas and public meetings, report presentations, effective communication, tracking forms and procedures. Discuss areas of strengths and challenges. “LISTEN, LEARN and LEAD.” Regularly review progress and observations stemming from the Entry Plan process. Provide the Board with written status report on entry plan results, 1stday, 1st week, 1st month, 1st year.

Objective 2: To meet with representatives from at least a “100 Families”.

Procedures: Create meet and greet opportunities over the summer, reading morning with the superintendent, movie family night with superintendent, host a coffee hour for parents. Visit each elementary and middle school classroom.  Visit East Hampton High School and have a social hour after school with 9th-12th graders. Discuss with parents their shared vision of learning, school culture and instructional programs, student growth and achievement, review safety plans, community outreach, integrity, fairness, ethics and professional responsibility and collaboration.  Have lunch with students. Attend sporting events, concerts, plays, fundraisers. Recognize at BOE meetings students, teachers and community members who have made a difference. BE VISIBLE! BE ACCESSIBLE! Ensure procedures to know about significant events in each students’ life. Establish monthly calendar of community events as well as school events. Establish communications to ensure all events are on my calendar and invitations are received well in advance to ensure my attendance.

Superintendent monthly coffee hours (one at 7am and one at 7 pm) for parents, community members, staff and students.  What does the community expect the new superintendent to accomplish? What is the most critical issue confronting the school district?  What is public perception of the schools, what is working? What is not working? Establish office hours once a week that are early and late for working parents/community members who would like to meet with me. “LISTEN, LEARN, and LEAD.”

Objective 3: To become better acquainted with neighboring principals/superintendents ensuring our students are prepared for the rigor entering 9th grade.

Procedures: I will meet with East Hampton Superintendent over the course of the first month establish a monthly meeting calendar.  What is working, but what needs to be modified for success? What should be abandoned? And ask what advice he could offer to support increased students achievement, “LISTEN, LEARN, and LEAD.” Meet with superintendents to learn from another colleague in the area.

Objective 4: To get to know the principal, assistant principal, director, teachers, support staff.

Procedures: Spend time with the administrators to set goals, support their professional goals, create a leadership book club after school hours. Establish cabinet meetings weekly as well as pre and post BOE meetings. Attend teacher and support staff breakfast, lunch “get to know” to build relationships. If invited to celebrations, attend. Establish a regular meeting calendar with each bargaining unit (Agendas prepared) “LISTEN, LEARN, and LEAD.”

Celebrate staff personal and professional achievements, create an atmosphere of caring.

Objective 5: To get to know the students, and meet as many students as possible, including students at risk, athletes, musicians, and artists. Publicly recognize students at BOE meetings. Create a BOE theme for the year and have students express their thoughts on the theme. For example, “What Springs School Means to Me” Establish high expectations for all students.

Procedures: Attend student government meetings. Attend as many student events as possible. Spend time in building before school, during lunch and recess, and after school. Visit classrooms, read to students.  Establish a monthly meeting calendar to meet with students. Be sure to do this for the students at East Hampton as well as Springs School District.

Objective 6: To get to know key individuals from PTAs.

Procedures: Attend meetings and join PTA, ask to meet with their board prior to their meeting or at another convenient time. Reach out to underrepresented stakeholders. Ensure a process for communication. “LISTEN, LEARN, and LEAD.”

Objective 7: To get to know community members: Concerned Citizens of Springs (CCS), Organization Latino Americana (OLA), Chamber of Commerce, Public Library, Civic Associations, Lions Club, Faith Organizations, Police and Fire Departments and political leaders.

Procedures: Attend and join the Chamber of Commerce and Civic Associations.  Meet with Town Supervisor.  Meet with local police and fire department chiefs. Meet with CCS, OLA, Lions Club and Faith Organization Leaders. Be sure to frequent local businesses and introduce myself. Thank them for their continued support. Plan to have a breakfast for local realtors. Introduce myself to local newspapers.

GOAL 2: Comprehensive Organizational Review. This area will require a great deal of reading and reviewing of documents, as well as meeting with many of the individuals mentioned above to clarify and ask questions pertaining to the documents.  The desired outcome is to continue to provide essential educational programs for all students to meet 21st century skills within the 2% cap.

Objective 1:  Curriculum and Instruction to ensure APPR and Common Core Standards are implemented with fidelity.

Procedures: Review Curriculum and Instruction Alignment and Benchmark Assessment Development.  Identify students who are at risk and create individual education plans for them, “One student at a time”. Develop higher-level courses, even at middle school level, with the help of Brookhaven Lab, and Stony Brook University. Continue to analyze state assessment results.  Review current staffing: teaching and support staff as part of budget process making recommendations to operate more efficiently. Meet with the principal and assistant principal, director of special education.  Discuss teacher SLOs. Observe all teachers eligible for tenure.  Review APPR with union and BOE and make revisions. Review policy manual, handbooks, and procedures. Review the implementation of Dignity for All Act to ensure compliance with the federal law and state regulations. Consider all current staff development as it relates to budget and consider what should continue.

Objective 2:   Budget/Finance to develop and present a fiscally conservative budget that helps maintain the integrity of the Springs School District and aligns with the community expectations while staying within the 2% cap.

Procedures: Continue the Budget Advisory Committee with complete community transparency. Review all audit reports and meet with auditors.  Prepare a BOE budget presentation calendar consistent with state guidelines with formal adaptation by the BOE in April. Participate in all Legislative initiatives to ensure Springs School District fair share of state aid.                                                        

Objective 3: Budget/Instruction to negotiate a new teachers’ custodians, teacher assistant, bus driver contract that adheres to the 2% cap while being fiscally conscious and improves instruction for all students.

Procedures: In preparation for negotiations with the teachers, custodians, bus  drivers meet with school board members to determine their parameters  for negotiations. At the same time, I would meet with the unions and request a list of their demands. We would develop a list of our demands. I would set up a series of meeting dates with the union. We would exchange our demands. My goal will be to have a contract in place before the December. Individuals contracts will be addressed after union contracts are ratified. I will keep the BOE up to date on our progress.

Objective 4: To present and pass a Capital Improvement Bond Referendum that is “Only What is Needed” and includes health and safety as well as instructional space and assist in meeting mandates. Update 5 year facilities plan including Technology ensuring the taxpayers investment.

Procedures: Meet with BOE, building administrators, chief custodian, business administrator, architect, and contractor to create bond presentation. Have presentation reviewed by Syntax and faculty for input.  Present Bond Referendum to the BOE.  Present Bond to parents at Open Houses. Seek community and public comment. Create newsletter to promote Bond. After BOE  resolution approved, promote the Bond till the budget vote early December. Review technology plan and infrastructure, and develop a list of improvements to LAN and WAN and any cost savings.  Review purchasing practices, security and plans to ensure we can support electronic testing of all students by 2018.  

Objective 5: Public Relations and Effective Communication continue to need to be improved including but not limited to technology, making it meaningful and a two-way conversation among and between the parents and the community.

Procedures: Provide the staff and community with accurate, timely and clear information via website, twitter, newsletters, e-mails, text messaging and voicemail. Use district parent portal and notification systems both district and those used by fire departments to reach entire community. Increase visibility at community events to ensure true community commitment, not just at budget time. Try and “marry” community organizations and BOE to one common vision and purpose. Try not to duplicate efforts but rather combine efforts with local organizations such as churches and OLA when a family is in need.


Short Term Goals for Springs School District

  1. Ensure students feel safe and parents know Springs School District is a Sanctuary

  2. Increased Communication with all stakeholders

  3. Establish a Twitter account and keep website up to date

  4. Establish a positive presence in the community

  5. Connect with Springs students and students from Springs that attend East Hampton High School

  6. Participate in Site Based Shared Decision Making

  7. Meet with Student Council

  8. Meet with PTA, any community organizations