Strategic Plan

The Grand Rapids Public Schools Strategic Plan sets a new course for our district based on the context of the current academic, social, emotional, public health, and economic environment of the community we serve.

2020 was a time of change for our country, our school district, and our families. This period of uncertainty also brought opportunities for innovation, growth and renewal. 

GRPS hired a new superintendent who, while addressing the ever-changing demands to reassess and reimagine learning, engaged our community in a Strategic Planning Process to position GRPS for the future.

We will attain our Equity Vision by driving our strategic plan toward a set of priority student outcomes that represent our greatest opportunities to enhance student success.


Priority Student Outcomes

These priority student outcomes will be defined by measurable progress indicators, and our performance on these outcomes will be reported to our community annually.

  • Increase literacy proficiency
  • Increase math proficiency
  • Reduce academic disparities for Black and Latino students
  • Reduce Black students exclusionary discipline
  • Increase student empowerment, belonging, and agency
  • Increase successful transitions from high school to college or career


Strategic Themes

Based upon our data and stakeholder input, we have identified six Strategic Themes that represent the highest leverage areas of district practice that we must enhance to achieve these priority outcomes. Each strategic theme is defined by a set of specific objectives, which are detailed below.

We recognize that our student success goes beyond academic achievement, and it is our responsibility to acknowledge and support our students’ emotional, behavioral, mental, and physical health.


  1. Increase student engagement and influence
  2. Empower families to support students
  3. Expand direct supports and services for student success and wellness

While our theme schools are recognized as innovative approaches to address the interests of our community and provide opportunities for our students, our neighborhood schools should be afforded the same level of attention, pride, and innovation.


  1. Ensure all GRPS schools are valued options for families

While our students do not have the same needs and interests, they must all have equitable learning experiences and opportunities that lead to success.


  1. Create equitable systems to distribute resources to schools based on student needs
  2. Incorporate anti-racist and inclusionary practices that advance student participation in programs and opportunities

As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, now more than ever we must ensure that our learning systems lead to student mastery and preparation for an ever-changing world.


  1. Ensure all students experience an aligned, culturally responsive curriculum at or above grade level
  2. Ensure curriculum and academic programs align with college and career readiness
  3. Expand applied, hands-on opportunities that align with student interests

In order for students to succeed, we must cultivate a district culture and design human resource processes that value our employees.


  1. Increase effectiveness of hiring processes with an emphasis on diversity
  2. Create a culture that demonstrates value of all employees
  3. Establish employee roles and competencies for effective district programs and services

As stewards of public resources, we must build trust by engaging our community as partners and customers and ensure our financial sustainability.


  1. Ensure open, responsive, and transparent practices
  2. Enhance partnerships aligned to community and student success
  3. Ensure financial sustainability


Strategic Plan Implementation

Our strategic plan objectives will be accomplished through a set of comprehensive strategic initiatives that will be implemented in stages over the next five years. We will continue to provide our community with details on this phased implementation and our progress throughout the life of our strategic plan.