On behalf of our Board of Education, I am pleased to share the PAUSD Promise. This guiding document is designed to clearly, concisely, and coherently outline our critical priority areas, provide space to explore our aspirations, and determine metrics to monitor our progress.

The PAUSD Promise was formally adopted on June 18, 2019, after tremendous input from stakeholders. Momentum was strong throughout the first semester of 2019 with many reasons to be optimistic about our efforts positively impacting student outcomes. The COVID pandemic closed schools in March of 2020, and undeniably derailed our efforts in the Promise while turning our attention to navigating unprecedented times.

PAUSD schools were the first to return to in-person instruction in our region during the 2020-21 school year. We believe that providing opportunities to return in-person, combined with a dramatically improved distance learning program, were our success markers for the year. Our thanks go to everyone who made the transition possible despite incredible challenges.

We enter the 2021-22 school year with renewed optimism and enthusiasm. The original PAUSD Promise has been modified to reflect the realities of returning after a prolonged and unimaginable closure. It is time for us to return our focus and energy to improving outcomes for students, while providing a safe environment for staff and students. We are up for the challenge!

The priority goals for 2021-22 reflect a desire to identify and influence things that are important and within our control. Of course, PAUSD will make progress in many areas beyond the five priority areas. We also understand that a long list of activities is a poor substitute for concise priorities. Hopefully, our stakeholders will see themes in our priority areas:

Mental Health

Nothing is more important than the Mental Health of our students, staff, and families. Starting with early routine checks with students, our mental health practices and service will be at the front of the line for priorities.

Service to Others

A year and a half of isolation makes Service to Others one of our priority areas. It is important for staff and students to consider giving of themselves with no expectation for anything in return. We all need each other.

Early Literacy

A child who enters fourth grade reading at or above grade level is on their way to a successful journey through our school system. There is a science to teaching and learning how to read. PAUSD is making a massive investment in the area of Early Literacy with the expectation of all students reading proficiently.


Equity has been a theme for many years in PAUSD. Student outcomes in this area have been mixed. This is the year to make significant gains for the students who need us the most. Attendance is tricky when we are in a pandemic.

Healthy Attendance

Healthy Attendance is a way of clarifying we want everyone to attend when they are healthy and able to be with us safely.

PAUSD Superintendent of Schools,

Don Austin, Ed.D.

Core Beliefs


Actions & Behaviors - Performance - Options

  • Preparation for college and career begins with attendance and appropriate behavior

  • Our students will perform at or above grade level

  • Students exit PAUSD advantaged for post-secondary opportunities

  • Demographics do not determine excellence


Leadership - Teamwork - Development

  • Distributive leadership accelerates systemic improvements and team success

  • Alignment of efforts creates shared ownership of vision and outcomes

  • From recruitment through retirement, employees evolve, grow, and promote

Focus Areas for 2021-22

District Priorities

High-Quality Teaching & Learning

All students are challenged to reach high standards and are provided an experience capable of accelerating learning through pedagogical academic supports, unobstructed access to rigorous courses, and an unwavering belief that our schools can positively impact the trajectory of each child.

Learn more about key strategies for High-Quality Teaching & Learning

Equity & Excellence

All students shall experience an environment characterized by acceptance, respect, and support to become invested in the pursuit of learning and excellence without fear of threat, humiliation, danger or disregard. Excellence shall become the norm for all regardless of background or demographics. Our schools shall embrace uniqueness, strengths, and challenges with support, understanding, expectations, and encouragement to succeed.

Learn more about key strategies for Equity & Excellence


Create a physical environment that promotes safety through established protocols and procedures, appropriate internal and external security systems, and routine emergency preparations.

Provide for the social, emotional, and physical health needs of students and staff and cultivate positive, identity-safe school environments that promote high levels of connection, engagement, and overall well-being throughout the school community

Learn more about key strategies for Safety

Special Education & Inclusion

Students with disabilities will be provided with appropriate identification and high-quality programs and services, in the least restrictive appropriate environment, designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for post-secondary opportunities.

Learn more about key strategies for Special Education & Inclusion

District Office Operations

Align with industry-standard protocols and practices to maintain efficient, well-paced, compliant, and fiscally-responsible management of District operations.

Learn more about key strategies for District Office Operations