SIAC Works to Continually Improve ICSD

November 20, 2013 (Independence, IA) – To meet the requirements of Iowa Code Section 280.12(2), the Independence School Board of Education appoints and charges a School Improvement Advisory Committee (SIAC) with making recommendations to the Board on an annual basis. Based on the committee members’ analysis of the needs assessment data, they make recommendations to the Board about major educational needs, student learning goals, curriculum, assessment, instruction, long range and annual goals, bullying and harassment prevention goals, programs, training, and other initiatives along with any other issues which relate to school improvement.

The SIAC membership consists of teachers from across the district, representatives of the classified personnel, all building principals, the superintendent, the director of curriculum, a guidance counselor, a school board member, parents, community members, and student representatives.  The SIAC makes decisions based on the best interest of students aligned with the district’s mission, vision, and beliefs.  Members of our school district’s SIAC serve a term of three years with roughly half of the committee replaced every two years.

During the 2012- 2013 school year, SIAC set two goals:

  1. Improving Communication with Students, Parents, and Communities
  2. Building Partnerships with Local Businesses and Community.

In establishing these goals, SIAC began working on a 2-3 year action plan.


  • With the new 1:1 initiative, it was decided that teachers and administrators would seek out electronic options for communication since our students would be well equipped with technology.  Many members of the committee felt parents also had access to technology through work and home, if not; other means of basic communication would be used.
  • The use of social media, local media, and the school website would also be good tools for communication.

Building Partnerships:

  • The community is always eager to be a part of the school system, so it was decided to enhance community support through curriculum.  Counselors worked hard to create Career Days, Career Café, and field trips to businesses in the area. This was just the beginning of “building partnerships” and it was very successful.  This goal is setting a strong foundation for building 21st Century Skills at ICSD.
  • Recently, a “Panel of Professionals” was held at the Jr. /Sr. High.  This was a first of many collaborations with business partners to bridge the gap between Independence Schools and area businesses.  Business professionals spent the afternoon collaborating with Jr. /Sr. High teachers to recognize current partnerships, enhancements, and areas of need to continuously improve.  Everyone came away with an understanding of these partnerships and the beginnings of a plan to bridge the gaps.

More information regarding the SIAC committee can be found here:

For additional information about SIAC, contact Superintendent Russell Reiter Director at or 319-334-7400.