Message from Superintendent Ushma Shah - Banner Image

Sept. 30, 2022

Dear District 97 Community,

My first three months as superintendent have been full of joyful experiences and authentic connections. I’ve had the opportunity to meet and converse with community members at events across our village, including PTO picnics, kindergarten meet-ups, Barriefest and the IGOV sustainability round table. At the end of each day, I reflect on the listening and learning that has taken place. I use the District 97 Equity Policy as a compass in this process. 

One of the leadership areas I have been focused on in my first 90 days is naming priorities to ensure a shared focus for our district, especially knowing that the 2018-2022 strategic plan sunsets this year. While we will engage in a participatory process to envision our future strategic direction, in 2022-23 we are organizing around three priorities: 

  • Be Curious;
  • Be Safe and Healthy; and
  • Be a Learning Designer.

I had the opportunity to share more about these priorities during my 90-day Superintendent Transition Report at our Sept. 27 board of education meeting. I invite you to watch the presentation or to take a look at the slide deck.

You will also be hearing more about these priorities as we ask for your partnership in shaping the work ahead. For example, our Be Curious team will soon be seeking your feedback on a draft of shared values and solution-seeking protocols that we will use to establish a positive district culture, and our Be a Learning Designer team is rethinking how we share academic progress information with families so that we can all work together to support students to own their learning journey, inside and outside of school. More information coming soon!

For now, wishing everyone a happy swing into the colorful fall season, 

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Contact the Superintendent

Dr. Ushma Shah


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Lonya Boose

Executive Assistant to the Superintendent/Board Secretary