Strategic Plan 2023-30: Planning Process

FCPS' planning process began in fall 2022 and finished in spring 2023

During the 2022-2023 school year, the strategic planning process included over 124,000 engagement touch points, 11 planning teams, and multiple opportunities for the community to engage in this process of developing a new strategic plan. Five guiding principles informed the development of the new strategic plan: engagement of diverse voices, data-driven, student-centered, alignment, and research-based. 

We’ve reviewed more than 100,000 feedback survey responses and hosted more than 65 planning team and community meetings. This has truly been a collaborative effort, and we thank all of you for joining us on this important journey." Michelle C. Reid, Ed.D

Excellence, Equity, and Opportunity

When we have equally high expectations for each and every one of our students, everyone benefits. In FCPS, we believe that excellence, equity, and access to opportunity are essential for achieving success in all aspects of life. Together, they foster growth, development and high achievement for each and every student, as they prepare for a world yet to be imagined.

Learn more about FCPS' commitment to excellence, equity, and access to opportunity, which are important components of the Strategic Plan 2023.  

Data-Driven Decision Making

Participants in the strategic planning process examined a broad range of resource materials and publications to make informed decisions based on evidence, rather than assumptions or intuition. These data reports included student performance and perception data. The data-driven process ensured that the strategic plan was grounded in evidence, focused on students, and aimed at improving educational outcomes for all.

The Strategic Plan - Planning Process Data Reports page provides a summary of the data provided to planning teams. 

Diverse Voices and Perspectives 

In a letter to the community, Superintendent Reid expressed appreciation for the tremendous support and input from the community. 

The collaboration and engagement of stakeholders, including students, families, staff (teachers, instructional staff, support staff, administrators), community members, community organizations, association leadership, and the School Board fueled our strategic planning process.  

The information below highlights the involvement from the diverse voices and perspectives amongst our community. The Strategic Plan - Planning Process Planning Teams page provides a summary of the stakeholder teams. 

Feedback from Surveys and Focus Groups

engagement numbers

Accessible Format for Data in Graphics (above)

Survey Responses

  • 28,669 survey responses from parents/caregivers, staff, and community
  • 92,939 student engagement survey and focus group responses
  • 65+ planning team meetings & community engagements including parents/caregivers held across 11 teams

Community Forums

From late January through April 2023, FCPS held nine in-person and six virtual Community Forums. Thank you to the almost 400 parents, students, staff, and community members who joined us.

Led by our consultant, Performance Fact, Inc., participants reviewed materials and then engaged in conversation. Feedback from the forums was shared widely with planning teams and other audiences as the process continued to develop FCPS’ new Strategic Plan. 

Dates and Locations of Community Forums

  • January 30 (Stone Middle School) 
  • January 31 (Lake Braddock SS) 
  • February 1 (Marshall HS) 
  • February 2 (Mason Crest ES)  
  • February 4 (Spring Hill ES) 
  • February 6 (Edison HS)
  • February 7 (South County HS)
  • February 8 - Spanish (Virtual) 
  • February 9 (Virtual) 
  • February 11 (Virtual)
  • February 15 (West Springfield HS) 
  • February 16 (Hunters Woods ES)
  • April 10 (Virtual) 
  • April 11 - Spanish (Virtual) 
  • April 17 (Virtual) 

Divisionwide Student Focus Groups

Divisionwide student focus groups offered an opportunity for students to provide input to help inform the strategic plan. Participation was optional. 

The focus groups included students from around FCPS, as well as a trained facilitator: 

  • Students in grades 3-6 were invited from a sample of elementary schools to attend focus groups in-person:
    • Round 1: early February 
    • Round 2: mid-March 
  • Students in grades 7-12 received an invitation to self-nominate to participate in the focus groups. Selected participants were chosen via lottery:
    • Round 1: February 
    • Round 2: March
  • Parents/caregivers of students who participated in a focus group were asked to sign a consent form:

Translated versions of consent forms were made available. 

Survey - Students

Results of Student Survey

The results of the Strategic Plan Student Survey were published in January 2023. The survey was offered in schools during November 2022.

Note: The survey results document does not meet FCPS web accessibility standards at this time. If you need help interpreting this content, please contact us. We will try to respond within 2 business days.

Importance of Student Voice

The student survey provided information on the priorities of FCPS students to Superintendent Michelle C. Reid, Ed. D, as she led the planning of FCPS' future. 

Student Survey Procedures

Schools administered the survey to students in grades 3-12 who had not been opted out by their parents/caregivers. The survey took about 10 to 15 minutes to complete. 

The survey was voluntary. The survey was designed to protect a child’s privacy and was anonymous. Students could skip any questions they did not want to answer and could stop taking the survey at any point – it was completely their choice.

View the survey questions:

Translated versions of survey questions were made available. 

Students were able to view the following videos about the survey:

Translated versions of videos were available in Spanish and Korean.  

Hear from Planning Participants - In Their Own Words


"I feel very optimistic about our schools and impressed by the attempt to include multiple perspectives. I enjoyed working with my table group and connecting with different community groups who support FCPS."


"There were so many perspectives and points of view in the room, it truly helped us to understand that we may not all have the same vision, but we all want the same result which ultimately is academic achievement, school success and student joy."


"This is what Fairfax County truly cares about and prioritizes, and this is what we hope to see in the future."


"We had many forms of data. The one that really stuck out to me was really understanding some of the achievements of different diverse groups across the county."


Learn More About the Engagement Process

Why Did We Need a New Strategic Plan? 

The new strategic plan replaced an older one developed in 2015. Since then, we experienced a pandemic that changed the way we think, a shift in technology that has seen eight new versions of the iPhone, and a plan to develop the first manned mission to Mars. 

What is a strategic plan?

A strategic plan works like a roadmap, clearly defining the best route to take in the years ahead to reach our goals. But in order to decide what road to take, we need to decide and define our goals - what matters to us in FCPS and what we want to achieve.

Why is a strategic plan important?

Our students are preparing for careers that don’t exist today. In order to keep pace with these needs, we need to rethink our plans for the future - and how we will best serve our students for this new era.

How does a strategic plan bring focus to our division?

A strategic plan establishes the direction that leads to our goals and focuses our efforts on how to get there. It helps us prioritize and make sure we are doing the right things at the right time to reach our overarching and common goals. Even on the busiest of days, our staff know exactly what needs to be top of their “to-do" list.

How does a strategic plan give our division purpose?

Employees, parents/caregivers, students, and our FCPS community must share the same purpose in order to recognize how we can move forward together. A strategic plan provides a clear direction and destination so everyone can do their part. Its absence leads to confusion, uncertainty, and wasted resources. Its presence builds a stronger FCPS community.

We are all much more motivated, and successful, when we share clear end goals!

What research informed the framework and approach to develop the new strategic plan?

The following research and publications are informing the framework and approach that is being used to develop the division's new strategic plan. 

  • National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. (2019) Monitoring educational equity. The National Academies Press.
  • Collins, J. (2001) Good to great: Why some companies make the leap and others don’t. HarperCollins Publishers.
  • Collins, J. & Porras, J. (1998). Built to last: Successful habits of visionary companies. HarperCollins Publishers. 
  • Danielson, C. (year). Enhancing professional practice: A framework for teaching (2nd edition). Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
  • Fullan, M. (2015). Coherence: The right drivers in action for schools, districts, and systems. Corwin.
  • Hattie, J. (2015). What works best in education: The politics of collaborative expertise. Pearson.
  • Hattie, J. (2009). Visible learning: A synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. Routledge.
  • Hattie, J. & Yates, G. (2013). Visible learning and the science of how we learn. Routledge.
  • Kaplan, R. & Norton, D. (1996) The balanced scorecard: Translating strategy into action. Harvard Business School Press.
  • Marzano, R. & Waters, T. (2009). District leadership that works: Striking the right balance. Solution Tree.
  • National Center on Education and the Economy. (2016). Nine building blocks for a world-class education system. National Center on Education and The Economy.
  • Partnership for the Future of Learning (2019). Community schools playbook. Partnership for the Future of Learning.


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