FROM THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

 

Dear Members of the PASB Community:

 

On May 22nd, 2014 we conclude another "Year of the Board of Trustees" with the General Assembly Meeting. The terms of the officers - President, Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary - also end at this time.

 

It is my great pleasure to update you with a brief report of what your Board of Trustees has been working on – and accomplishing – this past year. As reported out in October, we have been working with the Administration to continue our efforts in three main areas: the governance structures used by the Board, strategic plan development, and continuing the development of our physical plant through focused planning and execution. We have also been working with specific topics related to student achievement, accreditation and staff compensation, among others.

 

Governance Structures

You will all recall the major effort put forth last year to update our Constitution (Estatuto), a document that had not been revised since the founding of the school over fifty years ago. The concerted effort by the entire community to rewrite and then review the document was critical to setting the stage for the ongoing work that needed to be done, and the completion of that work and its approval by the Community last school year represented a major event in the history of our school.

 

Building on the new direction established in the revised Constitution, the Board, after over a year and a half of study and training, formally adopted a new governance structure for PASB in September. The Policy Governance Model emphasizes strategic thinking and helps force the Board into consideration of the long-term strategic development of the school. Staying within that structure, we have completely revised all of the Board’s policies to reflect the specific rules under which we operate as a Board and to define both our relationship with the Superintendent and the specific limitations we want to place on his/her functioning. The new policy structures have been a major project, and the last items were finalized at the April Board meeting.

 

Strategic Planning

Our new governance approach also requires us to develop clear definitions for outcomes that we expect PASB to achieve over the short, intermediate and long term. We are addressing this through strategic areas related to student achievement, student performance in athletics and the arts, and student development as global citizens. We are also defining specific enrollment targets, including setting a maximum size for our school and expectations for keeping student turnover at a minimum. The accountability metrics that will be associated with each of these areas will be the major portion of what we will use to evaluate the Superintendent’s performance. All of these tasks will be completed before the end of the school year.

 

You will also recall that last year we began developing the foundational documents that form the underpinnings for all we do. Following detailed committee work and community feedback, we approved a set of educational beliefs and a set of core values for our school community. That work has continued this year, and we approved a newly updated mission statement at the start of the school year. The new vision statement is nearing completion, having just been through the community review process, and we expect to have a final draft for Board consideration and approval before the end of the school year.

 

Current Issues

As we have labored on the various goal areas, we have continued to request detailed briefing from the Superintendent regarding our ability to recruit and retain quality teachers, our students’ performance in relation to requirements for entrance to Brazilian universities, and the state of our physical plant. These projects have resulted implementation of construction plans for our new Early Childhood Center and, after a full year of study, the adoption of a viable Master Plan to meet the needs of our students well into the future. They have also generated detailed examination of compensation structures in relation to both the local and international teacher recruitment markets and approval of a new comprehensive compensation plan, broad research into our ability to judge student ENEM performance, and review of student performance in mathematics and science areas. More detailed information on each of these areas will be presented at the General Assembly.

 

We were also able to learn a considerable amount about the critical area of school accreditation and to respond to numerous Administration concerns about the suitability of our past relationships to our need to be able to professionally and objectively evaluate the quality of our school and to plan for both long and short term development of our students and our programs. These efforts resulted in approval of a change in accrediting agency, and we are very pleased with Administration’s work to implement that strategic decision. As you know, we have successfully transferred our accreditation relationship to the New England Association of Colleges and Schools in the USA and are now pursuing joint accreditation with them and with the Council for International Education in Europe.

 

In pursuing all of the more strategic topics, we have not neglected the financial part of our fiduciary responsibilities, and detailed oversight of both operational and capital development budgets has continued. Despite some unexpected blips, we are pleased with the school’s financial situation and looking forward to having the resources needed to support ongoing improvement in everything we do for our children – both those who are students now and those who are yet to join our community.

 

All of us on the PASB Board of Trustees would like to express our thanks to the entire community for your trust and your support. It is a great pleasure to be able to serve the students, parents and staff as we all work together to make PASB a truly model institution!

 

For the Board of Trustees,

 

Bruno Leonardo Souto Costa, President.

 

 

Anita Lagesse, Vice-President

Ashley Bullard, Secretary

Bianca Sampaio, Treasurer

Manise Dacal, member

Luciano Fiuza, member

Carolina Liu, member

Marcela Lomanto, member

 
 
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