Strategic Directions

Every day at Live Oak School students think deeply, follow their curiosity, and stretch themselves to master news skills.  As part of a joyful community, they are known well and valued for who they are.

Live Oak’s mission, vision, and values are strengths to be secured. Our school is halfway through an expansion of its enrollment and we are well positioned to pursue the opportunities and obligations that are presented by our new size and by our home in San Francisco.

A year long, community wide strategic planning process has revealed five key areas of focus for the years ahead. All of them ask that we extend the potential and promise of Live Oak School in new and exciting ways. We are thrilled by the vision that emerges for the future of our School.

Inspire Every Learner

By expanding the breadth and depth of our curriculum we will inspire the passion and achieve the potential of every Live Oak learner.

Our school believes that our potential as humans is richly diverse, that learning is a complex act, and that students take different paths as they secure new knowledge and understandings.

Live Oak will continue to value a wide range of learners and nurture a growth mindset, while expanding our capacity to support each student’s needs and help them follow their interests. We will identify ways that our curriculum should evolve to provide broad exposure and opportunities for specialization.

What’s next:

We will audit the scope and priorities of the curriculum, with a focus on course content in science, technology, and math disciplines. We will explore new ways to address learning differences and advanced learners and we will support students to make choices about their learning experiences. Lines of inquiry will also include how we might use the bounty of the Bay Area to expand the walls of our classrooms.

 

Activate Changemakers

We take seriously our commitment to encourage students to think of themselves as changemakers and global citizens. We will ground our program in a guiding purpose that extends beyond our walls.

Live Oak has always strived to support our students’ development of strong identities and equip them with skills to navigate complex social and societal issues.

Now we will build upon this foundation to create robust and deeply considered social-emotional and service learning curriculum. A Live Oak education will secure for our students the full benefits of strong self-knowledge in the context of an affirming school community.

A curriculum which challenges students to identify injustice and assume responsibility to affect change will deepen engagement with learning and provide the sense of meaning that we know to be vitally important to well-being.

What’s next:

We will reimagine Live Oak’s social emotional and service learning curriculums, while reassessing our school’s relationship with our ever-changing city. We will articulate a scope and sequence for K-8 social and emotional education that includes identity development, collaboration and leadership skills, and a service learning ladder that emphasizes meaningful engagement with the community and connections to broader curriculum. We’ll explore how Live Oak might more deeply participate in San Francisco life and engage changemakers already in our community. As a result our students will understand intersecting systems, attain skill sets to exert influence within those systems, and feel a responsibility to use theirs positions and abilities to affect positive change in their communities and the world.

 

Advance Equity, Increase Diversity, Deepen Inclusion

We will Increase the racial diversity of our school community and expand the resources to support socio-economic diversity, while ensuring that all students and families feel a sense of belonging.

We know that the ideal learning environment for students is one filled with varied and multicultural perspectives, and that the Live Oak population must reflect a diversity of race, ethnicity, gender identities, and positions on the socio-economic spectrum.

An inclusive school community whose members possess a multitude of perspectives will offer our students the ideal environment for learning about themselves, others, systems, and cultures.

What’s next: 

We will strengthen our commitment to enrolling and supporting students and families from communities traditionally underrepresented in independent schools. In order to fully support our students, we will improve upon our policies and practices to ensure all students experience a strong sense of belonging and see themselves reflected in the curriculum, the faculty, and the community.

Additionally, in a city of increasing socio-economic disparity, we will be ever more intentional about ensuring that families at all points on the socio-economic spectrum feel fully included in the school’s curriculum and community.

 

Promote the Live Oak Way

We will clearly communicate the research-backed methods and philosophical motivations that underlie Live Oak’s teaching and learning, and conscientiously tend to our school culture.

Live Oak’s mission, vision, values, and school culture are deeply intentional, and our constructivist pedagogy demands the highest quality of student engagement, critical thinking, and development of relevant skills.

By leading the conversation about the quality of a Live Oak education and the importance of our shared values, including the non-negotiable value of diversity and inclusivity, we will better unite our community in a shared understanding of what Live Oak offers and a commitment to maintaining our values over time.

What’s next:

To ensure that the power and promise of a Live Oak education are well understood, we will develop orientation programs for new faculty, students and families, and create a parent education curriculum that connects parents to the core values and educational philosophy of the school. We will thoughtfully evolve our school’s rituals and traditions to stay true to their purpose in light of the school’s expansion, and promote Live Oak in San Francisco and beyond as a provider of an exceptional education.

 

Secure Assets to Support Priorities

We will understand the resources necessary to align our vision and offerings, as well as deepen our financial resilience.

We recognize that Live Oak’s most valuable resources are the people who bring our school to life every day, and that our greatest gift to our future students is caring for the school well beyond the timelines implied in this plan.

With a strong financial foundation we’ll ensure we can continue to attract and retain the highest quality educators and provide students with the most enriching programs, while securing this vision for the Live Oak of the next decade and beyond.

What’s next:

We will increase support for our highest quality educators so that their quality of life, professional and personal, can be prioritized in our compensation and work environment practices. We will secure assets so that Live Oak can be nimble in the face of future opportunities for facilities and strategic projects that enhance the quality of our programs, and protected from unseen risks.