With IOA Standards of Practice as guiding principles, the Ombuds has four strategic goals that align directly to the Board’s Aspirational Goals.
Strategic Goal 1 – Promote awareness, understanding and use of Ombuds services among members of the community
(aligned to Aspirational Goal 4)
- Be available to meet with community members in person (at Central Office – 5th floor, at other FCPS locations, or off site), by phone, or by email.
- Respond to and encourage all invitations to inform groups and individuals about the Ombuds’ roles and functions.
- Continuously build relationships with community members (including parents and families, Frederick County citizens, and FCPS employees).
- Provide information to the community through all available FCPS communication tools (including the FCPS website, FCPS social media, FindOutFirst emails, FCPS TV, print media, and other tools).
Strategic Goal 2 – Provide high quality customer service and options to resolve challenging situations
(aligned to Aspirational Goals 1, 2, 4 and 5)
- Acknowledge inquiries and concerns within 1 business day and provide responsive contact within 2 business days
- Listen to concerns and model effective communication using respect, empathy and civility.
- Obtain a consultative intake and set expectations of next steps from the Office of the Ombuds, including follow up communications and service-satisfaction surveys.
- Facilitate internal and external collaboration to review options and enhance solutions to issues and concerns.
- With permission, contact school employees to work collaboratively as needed.
Strategic Goal 3 – Educate community members about fair and equitable processes to resolve issues and concerns, leading to a collaborative culture.
(aligned to Aspirational Goal 1, 2 and 4)
- Explain policies, regulations, relevant provisions of Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR) or negotiated agreements, if applicable, and how they relate to visitors; provide clarity to school system processes; and seek and provide options for resolution of conflicts or complaints.
- Clarify challenging situations and provide clear, concise and correct communication regarding information needed.
- Evaluate challenging situations and explain possible options to address them.
- Provide helpful tips and guidance to foster collaborative relationships.
- Provide tools, support, and strategies to address common challenging situations.
- Refer community members to appropriate resources.
Strategic Goal 4 – Provide systemic feedback that results in continuous process improvement.
(aligned to all Aspirational Goals)
- Collect data to identify and report on trends while respecting confidentiality.
- Recommend possible strategies to improve the effectiveness of FCPS educational outcomes and organizational efficiency.
- Present quarterly data reports and an annual analysis report to the Board of Education.