RAFOS was opening a new school in Citrus Heights, CA—an area of greater poverty lacking in high quality education options. This much-needed school presented a unique opportunity and set of challenges. The process required first determining the best way to increase access to quality education for the community of Citrus Heights. It was also necessary to plan for sustainable growth by better preparing RAFOS leaders for both current and future needs. Additionally, it was important to be able to dynamically respond to complex external factors while remaining committed to a strong identity and value set not necessarily held by neighboring schools.
Friday helped RAFOS prepare to open a new school with the potential for growth in an underserved area. We leveraged a custom growth framework to design their internal leadership program called Rocklin Leaders, complete with its own curriculum and objectives. Friday also facilitated a strategic planning process to help RAFOS formally recognize their shifts in identity and values, directly tied to DEI and the rights of their students (prompted by a controversial national news story about one of their kindergarten teachers who read a children’s book about a child transitioning to her class) and continue moving toward their core goals.
Friday also helped school leaders identify and address important external forces, looking at the many ways the community and world around the school was changing (due to things like the COVID pandemic, Bay Area migration, emboldened political and social perspectives held by the families of current and prospective students, etc.) In addition to helping RAFOS identify new leadership from within, one graduate of the program became the principal at the new school, another became a vice principal, and a third became a school leader outside of the RAFOS community.