Pelham BOE wants your ideas

The Pelham Board of Education is seeking community input in the planning process for the new Pelham City School System and is holding a community forum at the Pelham Civic Complex on May 1. (Contributed)

The Pelham Board of Education is seeking community input in the planning process for the new Pelham City School System and is holding a community forum at the Pelham Civic Complex on May 1. (Contributed)

By MOLLY DAVIDSON / Staff Writer

PELHAM—As the Pelham City School System embarks on its strategic planning process, the Board of Education requests the input of all Pelham residents.

On May 1, the Board of Education will hold a community forum at the Pelham Civic Complex. The forum is designed to generate ideas for the new school system and is open to all members of the community, not just those with children in the school system.

“Anybody is welcome and encouraged to come,” strategic planning specialist Dr. Marcia Burke of Burke Enterprises LLC said during an April 24 Steering Committee meeting.

In order to ensure a productive meeting, the forum will break attendees into small discussion groups led by trained facilitators. In order enable the participation of all members of the community, ESL translators will be available on site.

This community forum is not an opportunity to air old grievances, rather the focus of the meeting is on the future and is it intended to generate as many responses as possible from participants.

“We are going to use every bit of the data (gathered from the forum),” Burke said.

The May 1 community forum is only the first of a variety of opportunities the public will have to express their ideas and opinions.

On May 2, the Pelham City School System will release several anonymous online surveys regarding the school experience. There will be different versions for the targeted audiences of parents, employees and the public. The surveys will be available on the Pelham City School System website in both English and Spanish.

The new Pelham City School System is committed to offering the entire community opportunities to participate in the planning process, Burke explained.

“(At the end of this process) every person in Pelham, Ala., will have had the opportunity to have input in the new system,” John Osborn of Burke Enterprises LLC said.

The May 1 community forum will be from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. and is free and open to the public.