AllentownSchool District

Allentown School District Announces Steering Committee, Addresses Mission and Vision During First Meeting

Allentown School District Announces Steering Committee, Addresses Mission and Vision During First Meeting
Posted on 12/31/2023

ALLENTOWN, PA — On Wednesday, December 13, 2023, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at Lehigh Valley Health Network–Cedar Crest Boulevard, 1200 South Cedar Crest Boulevard, Allentown, PA 18103, the Allentown School District’s Strategic Plan Steering Committee held its inaugural meeting to focus on the District’s mission and vision.

The Strategic Planning Process is a complex and comprehensive practice where multiple community and school representatives analyze data sources to identify priorities, set goals, establish strategies, and align resources to improve student performance and outcomes.

In completing the Strategic Plan, the Steering Committee will reflect, review, and affirm the mission and vision for the Allentown School District by enlisting input from stakeholders. The Steering Committee will engage in collaborative decision-making to define a Portrait of a Graduate and outline the actions our District should take to improve the educational experience for the Allentown School District Learning Community.

The Steering Committee announced Tri-Chairs who will drive the process going forward. The Steering Committee Tri-Chairs are:

  • Veronica Gonzalez, Chief Executive Officer, Valley Health Partners Community Health Center.
  • Terrence DeFranco, Chief Executive Officer, Iota Communications, Inc.
  • Dr. Cheryl Logan, Executive Director, McGraw Center for Educational Leadership, University of Pennsylvania.

Throughout the Strategic Planning Process, the Allentown School District will also conduct an Equity Audit to ensure that the District’s priorities are rooted in equity and access for all students.

The goal is to develop a Strategic Plan with the involvement of school leadership, principals, teachers, families, students, community partners, and business professionals for approval by the Allentown School District Board of School Directors at its May 23, 2024 meeting.

“Throughout the Strategic Planning Process, we will honor our past, foster relationships, and take stock of our successes to capitalize on the opportunities to reimagine our beloved Allentown School District to support all of our learners,” said Dr. Carol D. Birks, Allentown School District’s Superintendent.

The Steering Committee will review and analyze key data to determine how and where to focus District resources, including time, budget, and professional learning, to meet the outlined priorities and strategies best.

There will also be many opportunities for community engagement through surveys and a variety of community and district Focus Groups. During the Strategic Planning Process, the Steering Committee will incorporate feedback from Advisory Committees that review the priorities and drafts of the Strategic Plan.

Insight Education Group, which has consulted with the School District of Philadelphia, Syracuse City School District, and Charlottesville City Public Schools, will provide strategic guidance and expertise during the Strategic Planning Process.

Future Allentown School District Strategic Plan Steering Committee Meetings will be held on Tuesday, January 9, 2024; Tuesday, February 13, 2024; Tuesday, March 12, 2024; Tuesday, April 9, 2024; and Tuesday, April 23, 2024.

After each Steering Committee Meeting, the District will update the community on the plan development progress through its website, email and newsletter updates, and social media.

Members of the Allentown School District Strategic Plan Steering Committee include:

Sheila Alvarado
Superintendent’s Parent Advisory Council

Jennifer Aponte
Allentown School District

Dr. Joanne Barnett
Allentown School District

Anne Baum
Lehigh Valley Reilly Children's Hospital

Dr. Morcease Beasley
AASA, The School Superintendents Association

Dr. Ann Bieber
Lehigh Carbon Community College

Diaja Blakey
Allentown School District Parent

Dr. Katrin Blamey
DeSales University

Logan Blyler
Ramos Elementary

Becky Bodnar
Allentown School District Act 93 Union 

Daniel Bosket
Community Action Lehigh Valley

Patti Bower
Allentown School District

Megan Briggs
Lehigh Valley Community Foundation

Dr. Shuanta Broadway-McDaniel
Allentown School District

Dr. Kim Brown
Lehigh Valley Health Network

Taylor Brown
Pennsylvania Senate District 14

Sydney Carlson
Lehigh University

George Clay
Allentown School District Security Union

Senator Jarrett Coleman
Pennsylvania Senate District 16

Ashley Coleman
Bradbury Sullivan LGBT Community Center

Erin Connelly
United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley

Connor Corpora
Pennsylvania Senate District 14 Office

Lucy DeLabar
CASA Guadalupe

Charles Dinofrio
Lehigh Valley Children's Center

Dr. Teresa Donate
Allentown Latino Education Coalition

Doug Downing
Fulton Bank

Lin Erickson
Da Vinci Science Center

James Ferry
ESSA Bank & Trust

Patrick Foose
Pennsylvania Senate District 16 Office

Tracy Fountain
William Allen High School

Darla Frack
St. Luke’s University Health Network

Leslie Franklin
Allentown Education Association

Karianne Gelinas
Lehigh Valley Economic Development Council

Jane George
PPL Corporation

Dawn Godshall
Community Action Lehigh Valley

Dr. Andrea Grannum-Mosley
Lehigh Carbon Community College (Allentown NAACP)

Dr. Lisa Greenawalt
Lehigh Career & Technical Institute

Linda Groves
Allentown School District Paraprofessionals Union

Beth Halpern
Muhlenberg College

Dr. Robin T. Harris
Allentown School District

Attorney Tonya Harris
Allentown School District Foundation

John Hauth
St. Luke’s University Health Network

Chris Hendricks
City of Allentown

Kassie Hilgert

Kirk Hines
Allentown School District’s Maintenance Union

Attorney Gavin Holihan
Lehigh County District Attorney's Office

Katherine Jackson
Boys & Girls Club of Allentown

Abby Jaraah
South Mountain Middle School

Travis Johnson
Allentown School District Parent

Dipal Kapadia
Lehigh Career & Technical Institute

Brittany Keal
Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce

Redwan Kholi
American Syrian Arab Cultural Association

Vicki Kistler
City of Allentown

Andrew Krahulik-Knapp
Allentown School District

Marci Lesko
United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley

Lisa Liddington
Lehigh Valley Health Network

Guillermo Lopez
Allentown Latino Education Coalition, Hispanic Center Lehigh Valley

Ernesto Lopez
Central Elementary School

Belle Marks
City of Allentown

Beth Martin
Lehigh Valley Health Network

Christine Martin
PPL Electric Utilities

Robbie Mathews
Sixth Street Shelter

Mary Jo McNulty
Lehigh University

Senator Nick Miller
Pennsylvania Senate District 14

Amy Nyberg
Lehigh Valley Health Network

Dr. Donald Outing
Lehigh University

Dr. Rajika Reed
St. Luke's University Health Network

Kevin Rhoades
Superintendent’s Parent Advisory Council

Erika Riddle Petrozelli
Lehigh Valley Community Foundation

Leida Rosario
Allentown School District

Tyrone Russell
Faces International

Ana Sainz de la Pena
Allentown School District

Melanie Sanchez-Jones
Bureau of Special Education

Celysmar Santana-Oquendo
Allentown School District

Marisol Santiago
Allentown School District Clerical Staff Union

Dr. Evelyn Santana
Superintendent’s Parent Advisory Council

Dr. Malika Savoy
Allentown School District

Jennifer Schweyer
Allentown School District Parent

The Honorable Michael H. Schlossberg
PA State Representative District 132

The Honorable Peter Schweyer
PA State Representative District 134

Dr. Michael Sidhom
St. Luke's University Health System 

Karen Sodl
Allentown School District Local 391A of the Pennsylvania Joint Board of Workers United, SEIU

AJ Suerro
Hispanic Chamber of Commerce/Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce

David Synnamon
City of Allentown Health Bureau

Dr. Anibal Torres
Penn State Lehigh Valley

Raiza Trinidad
Superintendent’s Parent Advisory Council

Mayor Tuerk Mayor
City of Allentown

Dr. Deidra Vachier
Community Service for Children

Mariska Van Aalst
The Office of U.S. Representative Susan Wild

Dr. Bill Vogler
Pinebrook Family Answers

Stephanie Walker
Cedar Crest College

Dr. Belinda Waller-Peterson
Moravian University

Maggie Walters
Downtown Allentown Business Alliance

Jill Wheeler
City Center Allentown

Ali Wight
Dodd Elementary School

Paul Williams
Miers Insurance

Nancy Wilt
The Office of PA State Representative District 134

Sharif Brown
Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council

Demiya Blakey
Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council

Tayshawn Johnson
Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council

Allison Morales
Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council

Erin Schweyer
Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council

Ruby Silva
Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council