Teaching & Learning team restructure

Line of sharp colored pencils with reflection

This is the first in a series of blog posts, submitted by the Teaching & Learning (T&L) Team, about the T&L Team restructure that is taking place.

Timely Information

The best way to get support from someone related to any of the services, programs or content areas under the umbrella of the T&L Team — as listed in this blog post — is to email: Knox-K12TeachLearn@osd.wednet.edu.

Future updates will contain information about updated website structures and communications as part of a multi-tiered system of support for internal communications from the T&L Team.


This restructure is grounded in expectations from House Bill 1368 -– COVID -– Federal Funding (2021) Sec 12, which created a new section of Chapter 43.70 RCW, setting forth certain requirements for the appropriation of federal funds, including that school districts submit an Academic and Student Well-Being Recovery Plan to OSPI by June 1, 2021, to address student needs resulting from school building closures and extended time in remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This state law included specific requirements for school districts’ Academic and Student Well-Being Plans, as defined by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

In response to these expectations, the district Instructional Leadership Team (ILT) learned from stakeholders across our schools and community during the 2020-21 school year to inform the development of a multiyear vision for a Recovery Plan passed by our OSD Board at the end of May 2021.

Dr. Hannah Gbenro, who started on July 1 with Olympia School District (OSD), has been charged with partnering to lead significant Recovery Plan efforts. Along these lines, as our Chief Academic Officer (CAO), Dr. Gbenro has re-structured the T&L Team, is consistently learning from stakeholders to establish updated systems of support, and is committed to the multiyear vision for recovery (Recovery Plan) in the interest of student success.

Key Updates

The T&L Team is working to update website content to provide clarity and supports aligned with the information in this blog post. In the meantime, the team wants to ensure some key pieces are communicated.

  1. Based on lessons learned in spring — through site visits, reading previous surveys, listening to focus groups, learning from committee meetings — the T&L Team will take a
    • Departmentalized approach. This means all services, programs, and content areas that traditionally fall under “Teaching and Learning” will take an integrated approach. The formal title to this strategy is the “human-centered design” approach, where the end-users (students, educators, families) are prioritized at the center of all action-planning and decision-making.
    • Data-informed and results-driven approach. This means looking at data from across our system, holding up against research and external expectations, and prioritizing the rights of stakeholders within these considerations.
  2. T&L Team Members recently engaged in visioning efforts to identify a Mission & Vision that would best support partnership for the success of the multiyear journey toward realizing our OSD Recovery Plan. While the T&L Team is working on updated website information where this information will be accessible over time, below is the Mission & Vision for moving forward:
    • Vision: To partner with stakeholders in the interest of furthering our Student Outcomes through the lens of equity.
    • Mission: With equity at the forefront, our T&L Team mission is to equip, empower, and collaborate with stakeholders for increased individual and collective potential for the benefit of the Whole Child, Whole Educator, & Whole Community. 
  3. The services, programs, and content areas that now fall under the Teaching & Learning Team include:
    • Curriculum & Instruction across all content & programs spanning K – 12 (Math, English Language Arts, Social Studies, Science, Social Emotional Learning, Health Education, Music Education, Physical Education, Sexual Health Education, STEM, World Languages, Visual Arts)
    • Title/LAP Intervention Services
    • English Learner Services & Migrant Education Services;
    • Implementation of Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS)
    • Professional Growth
    • Assessment, Data, & Research
    • Career & Technical Education (CTE) Programming
    • College & Career Readiness (CCR) Services
    • Indian Education & Tribal Relations
    • Student Mentoring Programming
    • Highly Capable Services
    • Instructional Coaching Services
    • Family & Community Partnerships
    • School Improvement Planning (SIP) and District Improvement Planning (DIP) Processes

Stay tuned for future blog updates about the T&L Team restructuring, in support of the Recovery Plan and partnering with stakeholders to further our Whole Child focused Student Outcomes.