Return to Headlines

10 ways Eden Prairie Schools is achieving its mission to inspire each student

April 25, 2018


In 2012, Eden Prairie Schools defined its mission to inspire each student every day. In the last five years, the district has made significant progress toward reaching the mission as outlined in its community defined Strategic Plan. This year, the district’s Core Planning team - made up of nearly 30 parents, staff, students and community members - met for its two-day review of the progress made since the plan’s inception.


In five years time, Eden Prairie Schools has …

  1. Shifted its instructional model to focus on personalized learning and preparing students for skills employers demand through a focus on the 4Cs (communication, creativity, critical thinking and collaboration).
  2. Supported three character pillars to be safe, responsible and kind through the work of a Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports system (PBIS), which is highly effective at creating a positive and safe school culture and climate. 
  3. Intentionally worked to close the achievement gap through culturally responsive teaching practices and racial and cultural identity development. The achievement gap is narrowing as evidenced by significant gain in the district’s 3rd grade reading scores - a critical educational benchmark - as measured by state and district assessments.
  4. Restored parent and community trust in their schools. The latest parent survey using scientifically-valid random sample research revealed 99% support for our high quality teaching staff, 98% support for the direction of the district, 96% trust Eden Prairie Schools to do what’s right for children. In addition, 92% of community members support the overall quality of education in Eden Prairie Schools.
  5. Leveraged purposeful use of digital resources to expand learning opportunities. This creates an anywhere/anytime learning environment, whether students are at school or home. 
  6. Developed systemic personal, social emotional and academic student goal setting where each student sets annual goals and reviews them with teachers and their family. 
  7. Organized staff into collaborative teams with a focus on student achievement.
  8. Partnered with Optum to empower employees at Oak Point Elementary and Central Middle School to come up with innovative solutions to improve their schools through crowdsourcing.
  9. Started a district-wide volunteer program to help connect parents and community members to classroom opportunities. Those interested can learn more and sign up at 
  10. Created a Family Resources program to identify service gaps and needs in the community and work to connect students and families with the resources they need.

Looking forward to the next five years, Eden Prairie Schools will be focusing its efforts to achieve the mission in three important areas: personalized learning, achievement disparities and engagement.


Personalized Learning
By 2023, we will personalize learning to achieve our mission.

  • Partnerships are formed between teachers and students which creates learning experiences that are personally relevant and reflective of each student.
  • Teachers consistently use data to design and adjust instruction in response to each student’s learning and provide meaningful feedback for goal-setting and progress monitoring.
  • Students will become critical thinkers, communicators, collaborators, and creative problem solvers about the various concepts they explore through our district curriculum. 
  • Authentic learning experiences are designed in which students apply their knowledge and skills to performance tasks that reflect real-world purposes, audiences, and resources. 
  • Learning environments throughout the district are designed to promote partnerships, responsiveness, rigor, and authenticity.

Achievement Disparities
By 2023, we will eliminate achievement disparities to achieve our mission.

  • Each student experiences personalized learning that result in achievement not predicted by race.
  • Each student experiences a supportive, responsive school environment where their social-emotional and academic needs are met by culturally conscious staff who reflectively respond to each student’s voice.
  • Each family served by our schools experiences partnerships with school staff that provide a foundation for working together to ensure students across all racial groups have access to personalized learning.
  • Equitable access is provided for all students to participate in a high-quality early-childhood education.
  • The racial demographics of the staff closely reflect that of the student population.

Strategy: Engagement
By 2023, we will engage our stakeholders to achieve our mission.

  • Student voice and leadership will be increased and elevated.
  • The beliefs and behavior of staff contribute to the achievement of our mission. 
  • family engagement plan will be developed and implemented.
  • Community partnerships are expanded and aligned to enhance student learning.

“I am inspired on a daily basis by the commitment of our staff and the learning demonstrated by our students,” said Superintendent Dr. Josh Swanson. “The strategic plan, this team helped create, has served as a beacon for our work over the past five years. I believe the evolution of the plan will only accelerate its positive impact on our efforts to achieve our mission and provide strong outcomes for our students.”

View the district’s strategic plan.