FWPS School Board named 2020 Large Board of the Year and Board of Distinction 5 years in a row


    On November 19, 2020, the FWPS Board of Directors was named the 2020 Large School District Board of the Year by the Washington State School Directors Association (WSSDA).

    Accepting this award on the Board’s behalf at the WSSDA virtual luncheon, Board President Geoffery McAnalloy stated, “We’re grateful to be honored alongside other distinguished school board directors and see this special recognition as affirmation of the strong collaboration between the Board and superintendent in Federal Way Public Schools.”

    McAnalloy acknowledged the tremendous growth, significant shifts, and increased results since the strategic plan initiative was put in place by Superintendent Campbell, who was hired to lead the district six years ago. He also recognized the strong partnerships that made this possible. “We can’t do this work alone, and are fortunate to have a dedicated staff, parents and guardians as partners, and a caring community,” said McAnalloy.

    For the fifth year in a row, Federal Way Public Schools (FWPS) Board of Directors has been recognized as a Board of Distinction. This year, FWPS is one of 25 school districts who received the award. There are 295 school boards across Washington state that may choose to apply for the distinction. 

    The FWPS Board of Directors was shown as demonstrating “exemplary evidence of ongoing professional development, addressing opportunity gaps and practicing governance that reflects the Washington School Board Standards into practice during the 2019-20 school year,” according to Washington State School Directors’ Association (WSSDA) who granted the award.  

     “Over the past five years of receiving the Board of Distinction, we continue to see tremendous growth and shifts towards elevating the success of each and every scholar in Federal Way Public Schools,” said FWPS Board President Geoffery McAnalloy. “Higher graduation rates, increased student voice and family engagement, and new schools built thanks to voter support of the largest bond in district history are just a few of many accomplishments. As a Board, we’ll continue our policy work to keep a focus on equity, continuous improvement, and each scholar graduating with the academic knowledge and 21st century skills ready to succeed as a responsible citizen.” 

    “Our ultimate goal is that our 23,000 scholars reach their highest potential,” said Superintendent Dr. Tammy Campbell. “This award exemplifies the relentless focus, commitment, and hard work of our staff and the sponsorship of the FWPS Board of Directors. I’m fortunate to partner with and alongside such a dedicated group of individuals for our scholars’ success!” 

    National research shows a correlation between highly successful school board actions and student outcomes. The Board of Distinction application is a rigorous process that provides evidence of the board of directors’ work in partnership with the superintendent and how their actions helped their school districts close opportunity gaps. 

    FWPS’ Board of Directors’ application demonstrated clear data indicating positive impacts on student success in two key areas:

    • how the board has addressed the opportunity gap, and
    • how they are providing learning essentials, including rigorous curriculum, technology, and high-quality facilities.

    Multiple outcomes were shown for addressing the opportunity gap for FWPS scholars: an increase in:

    • graduation rates; 
    • Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) completion percentages;
    • percent of scholars not receiving exclusionary discipline; 
    • English Language Learner exit rates; and
    • college enrollment rates.

    A commitment to student learning was also evident in the Board’s sponsorship of the superintendent and her team’s efforts in the following areas: equitable access to academically rigorous coursework and programs, a customer service-oriented Information Technology Services Department, and continued progress towards school construction projects.  

    This year’s panel to determine Boards of Distinction included 10 judges with representatives from Educational Service Districts and the State Board of Education. “The judges were very impressed,” said WSSDA Director of Leadership Development Tricia Lubach. “Not only by the emphasis each of the boards placed on ensuring equity and access for their students, but also that they did so in unique ways that were tailored to their specific communities.”

    The FWPS Board of Directors was honored with other Board of Distinction award winners and named 2020 Large Board of the Year on November 19, 2020 at the WSSDA Annual Conference.