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Portrait of a Graduate

Regional POG Convening
Regional POG Convening

Updated February 2024

Portrait of a Graduate - What is it?

For more than three years, Springfield Public Schools has engaged the community to help build a Portrait of a Graduate – a vision of the skills and attributes SPS students need to find success in college and career. Community input has been a vital component of the process, which will ultimately guide the creation of the district’s six-year Strategic Plan.  

Superintendent of Schools Daniel Warwick said the development approach for the district’s new Strategic Plan has been unlike anything in the past. “We intentionally looked to expand the thought process around what success looks like for our students,” said Warwick. “We drilled down past test scores and policies and talked about the attributes that schools need to help foster to set students up for success.”

SPS Portrait of a Graduate work is supported by a grant from the Barr Foundation. Based in Boston, Barr focuses regionally, and selectively engages nationally, working in partnership with nonprofits, foundations, the public sector, and civic and business leaders to elevate the arts, advance solutions for climate change, and connect all students to success in high school and beyond.

POG Community Cabinet
Many of the individuals listed below have been with the Portrait of a Graduate Working Team and consistently contributed to the development of the Portrait of a Graduate and Strategic Plan since the initiative launched in 2019 and all comprise the POG Community Cabinet.

The Community Cabinet serves to be aware of and regularly inform the implementation of the Springfield Public Schools’ strategic plan, elevating the role of community partners in the successful implementation of the plan; to act as critical friends, providing authentic, future-focused, and student-centered feedback on the implementation of the Springfield Public Schools’ strategic plan; and to prioritize equity in all conversations, partnering with district to ensure just outcomes for each student, raise historically marginalized voices, and challenge imbalances of power and privilege.

SPS Chief Instructional Officer Michelle Balch, Springfield Empowerment Zone Partnership Executive Director Matthew Brunell, SPS Chief Communications Officer Azell Cavaan, Tech Foundry CEO Tricia Canavan, Springfield Technical Community College President John Cook, MassHire Hampden County Workforce Board President and CEO David Cruise, Restoration City Church Associate Pastor Manny Diaz, SPS Chief of Family and Community Engagement Jose Escribano, College of Our Lady of the Elms President Harry Dumay, Strategic Planning Consultant Kate Fenton, SPS Parent and Community Advisory Committee Member Ipsita Ganguli, Great Schools Partnership Senior Associates Kate Gardoqui and Christina Horner, SPS Alternative Schools Principal Rhonda Jacobs, SPS Chief of Student Services Yolanda Johnson, Springfield Housing Authority Executive Director Denise Jordan, MassMutual Director of Strategic Giving Madeline Landrau, Springfield Education Association President Tracey Little-Sasanecki, SPS School Committee member LaTonia Naylor, SPS Chief of Student Assignment Services Lourdes Soto and Superintendent of Springfield Public Schools Daniel Warwick.


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