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Set instructional priorities
Set Instructional Priorities | SMARTER Goals

The budget needs to be rooted in the priorities of the district. Intentionally created instructional priorities provide a strong basis for developing a district’s budget and strategic financial plan, as well as presenting a budget document.


  • Develop goals that address district's major needs
  • Analyze the underlying issue of any deficiencies being addressed
  • Develop priorities to accomplish goals
  • Select a limited number of priorities to pursue to maintain focus and promote success

Develop SMARTER Goals

Goals should be thoughtfully developed and structured to be specific, measurable, and reasonable in order to provide a strong foundation for the budget process.


  • Level 1: Develop goals with specific outcomes that reach for significant, but manageable improvement. Goal-setting is done at executive level with board, identifies indicators to track progress, and goals are limited in number.
  • Level 2: Goals reach for significant improvement and informed by what is achievable. Goals have multi-year time-frame, resource requirements, some quantitative measurement, and informed by input from broad array of staff.
  • Level 3: Fully realized SMARTER goals set through an inclusive and collaborative process.

Your Quick Wins

  • Quick Win: Examine current goals to see if they conform to SMARTER framework  - decide if goals not being SMARTER is hurting the district and how/why?
  • Why important?  Sets impetus for improving district’s foundation and overall direction.