Summit School Strategic Plan 2016–2021

Exceptional Educators

Summit faculty and staff have a rich history as talented, generous, leadership-oriented experts in their fields who enthusiastically meet the academic, social, emotional, and physical needs of a high-achieving and diverse population of learners. As lifelong learners who shape the future, we will continue to focus on thinking creatively, reasoning systematically, and working collaboratively, both within and beyond the Summit community.

Teachers, administrators, staff, board, and parents alike must continue to demonstrate deep commitment to providing the passionate and innovative learning that develops both students’ and Summit’s full potential.


Design and implement a mission-centered and resource-aligned best practice professional growth model for attracting, hiring, developing, evaluating, and inspiring the highest quality educators.

  • Develop, adopt, and implement Summit School “Portrait of a Teacher”
  • Develop, adopt, and implement a structured, best practice model for faculty compensation that serves the mission and enhances the culture of Summit School
  • Align performance review model and compensation model with all elements of “Portrait of a Teacher”


Design and implement a robust model for developing faculty leadership as mentors, action researchers, innovators, and public thought leaders for teaching and learning.

  • Formalize opportunities for faculty leadership work within and across divisions
  • Establish leadership development as a formal strand of the overall professional development offerings through the Center for Excellence and Innovation
  • Support faculty and administration in publishing and presenting on recent innovations and enduring features of Summit curricula and program


Through the work of the Center for Excellence and Innovation, establish Summit as a leader in organizational collaboration and educator training.

  • Extend the reach and improve the quality of external professional development
  • Create opportunities to share the Triad Academy/Summit merger as an exemplar of strategic collaboration
  • Further develop strategic relationships with local museums


Develop and implement an innovative and unique school-wide approach to student learning profiles, focusing on the elements of academic skills, cognitive profile, social-emotional profile, and family history/context.

  • Form a cross-divisional task force of teachers and administrators to lead the initiative
  • Create a Student Learning Profile document that can be used within each division and that is aligned across divisions
  • Establish an ongoing process within each division and aligned across divisions for developing, maintaining, and using profiles to better meet the needs of students

Inspiring Learning

Inspiring Learning is both who Summit is and what Summit does. Our graduates are prepared, honorable, curious, accepting, and socially responsible. Possessing these core competencies inspires Summit students to address the challenges of the future by positioning them to create that future. Our program reflects the changing education landscape and is designed for each student to develop his or her full potential. Inspiring learning at Summit is not limited to students. We cultivate a culture of learning that encompasses our parents, faculty, staff, board, administration, and the wider public. Focusing on the developmental needs of children, current research, science, and best practices, the professionals at Summit School engage in collaborative, vigorous, and structured professional learning geared toward excellence and innovation in all aspects of our program.


Further refine, document and implement a unique JrK-9 curriculum design model aligned with and guided by Summit’s Progressive tradition principles.

  • Continue to refine the Summit annual Curriculum Review process
  • Formalize and make systematic relevant work from Project Zero in our curriculum design model
  • Formalize curriculum leadership teams comprised of faculty and administrators charged with continuously documenting and aligning curricula within and across academic disciplines and divisions


Lead a strategic, systematic, and community-wide exploration of the role of civic engagement in the student experience.

  • Develop mission-centered and core competency-based JrK-9 opportunities for social entrepreneurship
  • Establish a co-curricular and curricular presence in the Winston-Salem Innovation Quarter focusing on innovation, collaboration, and civic engagement
  • Further develop our JrK-9 service learning program in the context of what it means to be a citizen (of one’s community, one’s state, one’s country, and the world)


Pursue inclusivity as an essential facet of the Summit community.

  • Develop and apply a school-wide understanding of community
  • Develop and apply a school-wide understanding of diversity
  • Develop and apply a school-wide understanding of cross-cultural competence


Cultivate and clarify partnerships locally, regionally, and nationally, with sister schools, institutions of higher learning, and organizations focused on innovation and entrepreneurship in the areas of: teaching & learning, curriculum and program, child and adolescent development, and professional growth.

  • Form a cross-divisional task force of teachers and administrators to lead the initiative
  • Develop action plans, timelines, and responsible parties for each of these four areas
  • Strategically communicate and regularly celebrate the presence, purpose, and accomplishments of these partnerships
  • Enduring Stewardship

    Summit’s Roots & Reach are unique. Safeguarding Summit’s viability for generations to come requires both vision and discipline—honoring Summit’s enduring philosophy, principles, and mission while adapting to a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world.

    Stewardship is about paying our debt to the future by creating an enduring, strategic, innovative, and mission-aligned infrastructure for the school, thus assuring that the Summit experience continues to be accessible to a broad and diverse range of families who are part of a vibrant and inclusive community. The Continuous Improvement Model serves as the engine for constantly aligning resources with vision and mission—now and in the future.


    Develop and implement a long-term strategic financial plan for the school.

    • Implement the board-approved plan for retiring the school’s debt
    • Implement and track the Advancement Strategic Plan
    • Continue to refine, coordinate and align the work of the Finance, Advancement, Personnel, Facilities, and Investment Committees of the Board of Trustees in support and execution of the Strategic Plan


    Develop and implement a Major/Capital Gifts Program.

    • Complete $1 million fundraising initiative to endow the Center for Excellence and Innovation in Teaching and Learning
    • Develop, prioritize, timeline, and establish funding mechanism for capital initiatives that rise out of the Academic Strategic Plan
    • Develop, prioritize, timeline, and establish funding mechanism for capital initiatives that rise out of the Facilities Master Plan


    Develop, implement, and sustain a comprehensive continuous improvement model for the school.

    • Complete 3-5 year strategic planning for: Academics, Technology, Center for Excellence and Innovation, Athletics, Co-Curricular Programs, Advancement (marketing/communications, admissions, development) and Business Office
    • Integrate key findings from SAIS re-accreditation process and strategic planning processes into the refinement and execution of the school’s overall Strategic Plan
    • Merge strategic planning, ISM stability marker work, and self-study processes into an integrated process called the Continuous Improvement Model


    Complete ongoing strategic infrastructure initiatives.

    • Complete post-merger analysis
    • Settle the question of whether to establish a grades 10-12 division of the school
    • Complete facilities master plan