The Gleaner

NFSB continues its innovative public consultation process

“Our education projects in the schools and centres and our Commitment to Success plan can’t be a binder that just sits on the shelf,” says the New Frontiers School Board (NFSB) outgoing director general, Rob Buttars.

“This needs to be something that is really front and centre at the schools,” he says of the plan, which sets out the context in which the needs of schools and centres are met while responding to challenges and expectations in the community.

The NFSB is continuing its strategic planning exercise to produce a new version of the five-year plan which includes revising the vision, values, and mission statements. An initial public consultation took place using an innovative online tool called ThoughtExchange, which allowed participants to rate submitted thoughts, and where the most popular contributions rose to the top.

A total of 307 participants submitted 238 thoughts during the first online consultation period. Themes that resonated the most included extracurricular activities, life skills and citizenship, student health, student success, continuing education, quality of teaching, and hospitable learning environments.

“We are happy with the results,” says Buttars. “We feel we got enough from that original consultation to draft our orientations,” he adds, noting the board has chosen to focus on several broad areas that encompass the values of the NFSB while responding to the objectives established by the Education Ministry. Buttars says the goal is to allow schools a certain flexibility within the system.

The proposed vision statement reads, “The NFSB fosters success for each student.” The draft of values and mission statements are based on the principle of caring, with a focus on key words including community, adaptability, respect, and equity and inclusion (C.A.R.E.).

A new ThoughtExchange survey was launched on May 12 to allow the NFSB community to provide feedback on the draft vision, values, and mission statements. Just under 50 people have already participated in the survey, which can be accessed online at

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