Total Enrollment: 162,589
|Students identified as children served in special education:||11.0%|
|Students eligible for free/reduced lunch:||53.0%|
|Students identified as minority:||68.4%|
|Students identified as English language learners:||15.0%|
"One document, 10 priorities, one direction" sums up Gwinnett County Public Schools' strategic focus on improving instruction and student learning across the district. As the gateway to metro Atlanta from the north/northeast, Gwinnett County is home to more than 805,000 individuals, one-fifth of whom are children and youth educated by the Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS). In this highly diverse county, which encompasses 15 municipalities across 437 square miles, district leadership believes that it is the responsibility of the adults in the district to not only sustain the district's record of success, but also to continually make the kinds of improvements needed to achieve the goal of being a "system of world-class schools."
And, because the district believes that it is within its direct control to change or, at a minimum, influence practice across the district through the attitude and action of adults, it has put reforms in place that are designed to support the people employed by the district while, at the same time, demanding that each of them holds high expectations for student learning and takes responsibility for the results achieved.
In Gwinnett, our direction is clear; We focus on teaching and learning within a structure that supports and encourages excellence.
– Dr. Colin Martin, Executive Director of Research and Evaluation for GCPS
This is no small feat in a district with 133 school buildings (i.e., 77 elementary schools, 26 middle schools, 19 high schools, and 11 additional educational facilities). The district has outlined Strategic Priorities, defined as qualities and characteristics stakeholders believe are desirable for 10 major components of the district, which include students; employees; parents and guardians; governance and leadership; curriculum, instruction, and assessment; facilities and operations; financial stewardship; information management and technology; communication; and public image and community pride. These Strategic Priorities keep the district focused on its core business–teaching and learning–and they drive continuous improvement. They link GCPS' vision, mission, and beliefs to the goals, initiatives, and operational management plans/local school plans for improvement.
The details in these plans outline the necessary actions that will bring the Strategic Priorities to life and move the district closer to realizing its vision of becoming a system of world-class schools. For example, part of the vision for the governance and leadership component is that "leaders (at all levels) will focus on results, particularly as they relate to students, and will value accountability."