Strategic Plan

Navigate this page with the links below:
Welcome to the Woodlynde of today...
...and the Woodlynde of tomorrow
Bold plans are the foundation upon which Woodlynde School was built, emerging as it did from the determined hearts and minds of educators at the shuttered Booth School in 1976.

The impetus: the unmet needs of young people with learning differences. 

We are a school long committed to the pursuit of groundbreaking interventions, novel methods, and innovative solutions, all of which have been undertaken in the name of empowering students who learn differently to become strategic thinkers and self-advocates.
Woodlynde 2026 continues that tradition and brings us to our fiftieth year. It arrives at an unprecedented moment in both our societal and institutional history. A world in the throes of a dramatic evolution marked by rapid technological change, sociopolitical unrest, economic inequality, and environmental crisis unfolds around us. At the same time, research progresses at a breakneck pace, and we find ourselves with a clearer understanding than ever before of how children learn, grow, adapt, and thrive. 
Woodlynde is changing as well.
We've deepened our commitment to the school’s mission by reframing learning differences to reflect insights drawn from psychology, neuroscience, and the practical experience of our teachers. A student’s learning difference is the filter through which every part of their being necessarily passes. Their academics. Their habits and behaviors. Their social-emotional intelligence. Their personal experiences. Their interpersonal interactions. Such a view sets Woodlynde apart from contemporaries who would understand learning differences in a vacuum. Our passion is understanding young people with learning differences in their wholeness and, in so doing, transforming their relationship to learning, life, and lifelong learning. 

That passion has led us to continually assess and improve our college-preparatory curriculum. It breathed life into a $12 million capital transformation. It emboldens us to pursue ever-greater inclusivity in our practices and our policies, bringing us full-circle as an institution founded to promote belonging and destigmatize difference. It drives us to want to share our approach with the world and draws more and more philanthropic supporters to us year after year.
Woodlynde finds itself in a position of unparalleled strength.
Our response to this moment is not an evolution, but a revolution—in student engagement and learning, in knowledge sharing and teacher training, in service provisioning and sustainable institution building. 

The truly revolutionary is never all new. It strikes a delicate balance between time-tested tradition and nascent discovery, the very vanguard at which Woodlynde has built its reputation as a school that was doing it before it was a buzzword. Paving the way to our half-century mark, Woodlynde 2026 charts a course for Woodlynde School along this leading-edge, setting the stage for the next fifty years and seeding the ground for the century after that. 
Our vision is to exponentially increase the number of lives meaningfully transformed by Woodlynde School’s approach to learning and teaching.
Priority I
The Woodlynde Student
Supporting and challenging students to be ready to engage with learning and life
Action Items 

» Inaugurate an annual data collection and review process as well as a Sustainable Resources Summit led by a multidisciplinary team to analyze student progress, needs, successes, and opportunities for growth to ensure that necessary, sustainable resources are in place to support continued academic challenge and growth and social-emotional wellbeing 

» Flesh out core responsibilities for and hire a Chief Educational Officer, who will take responsibility for—among other things—strengthening
progress monitoring

» Undertake K-12 curriculum mapping to assess academic rigor, consistency, learning outcomes, and the attributes of an ideal Woodlynde graduate and create procedures for the regular review of curriculum in both the short- and long-term
» Deploy a fully scoped and sequenced executive functions program schoolwide

» Pilot Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

Create schoolwide and content-specific curricular DEI goals and competencies 

» Develop a proactive process for responding to student health and wellbeing, up to and including the hiring of a social-emotional learning specialist and a clinical educational psychologist

» Reaffirm Woodlynde School’s commitment to an evidence-based, structured literacy approach by reintegrating Wilson® Tier I (FUNDATIONS) and Tier II (Just Words) into classrooms and exploring additional programming to support literacy for students without dyslexia
» Formalize a program of foundational review/corequisite support in English (CRW), math (PBM), and beyond to ensure age level-appropriate rigor in terms of content and challenge in terms of methods across grades and the curriculum 

» Develop a strength and conditioning program for the physical wellbeing of students 

» Refocus Woodlynde Athletics around education-based athletics by defining a departmental mission statement, mapping curriculum, and building partnerships with outside organizations like the Positive Coaching Alliance

» Deliver a challenging curriculum with excellence in instruction and support designed to meet the learning needs of each student 

» Design programs and systems that strengthen our capacity to support the physical, psychological, and social-emotional wellbeing of our students
Priority II
The Woodlynde Teacher
Inspiring passionate faculty and mentors to further their craft and deepen their expertise 
Action Items 

Create clearly defined responsibilities and a leadership structure for learning specialists as well as a guidebook to the Woodlynde learning specialist method available for internal and external training 

» Credential Woodlynde-specific supplemental and enrichment frameworks, especially our Communication, Reading, and Writing (CRW) Skills Program, for internal and external training

» Create and document processes and procedures outlining the ideal working relationship between learning specialists and advisors for student-related matters, academic and otherwise
» Hire a cohort of diverse colleagues 

» Train staff in best practices for proactive/positive social-emotional wellbeing

» Revisit handbooks and observation forms to create, evaluate, and continually improve upon consistent goals and teacher accountability in EF, SEL, DEI, and UDL across content areas 

» Drive the creation of tracks of specialization (e.g., executive functions in Language Arts classrooms or UDL in the teaching of mathematics) that bring together core competencies and specific content areas under the umbrella of Woodlynde-way professional learning (PL) required of all colleagues 
» Craft the processes and procedures needed to undergird a colleague professional learning (PL) program that balances mandated Woodlynde-way PL with passion-based PL and is mapped three years in advance, creating a curriculum for teachers foregrounding shared expertise and immersive, active participation

» Inaugurate a young teacher investment program baked into Woodlynde’s package of support to encourage a minimum seven-year stay and supplement existing mentorship offerings with professional growth opportunities 

» Create lines of support for colleagues to present publicly and to deliver teacher-to-teacher training 

» Formalize a set of colleague satisfaction metrics and retention strategies, up to and including salary benchmarking and living wage certification

» Establish Woodlynde School as an expert in delivering critical reading and writing skills, implementing Responsive Classroom and Universal Design for Learning (UDL) practices schoolwide, and addressing executive function challenges systemically 

» Refine and elevate the role of the learning specialist at Woodlynde School 

» Expand the definition of a Woodlynde teacher by offering external educators credentialing opportunities with in-house experts 
Priority III
The Woodlynde Campus
Creating and curating spaces and programming that reflect our mission and values  
Action Items 

» Develop programmatic uses for the McNeil Labyrinth 

» Outline a philosophy and a multi-year implementation plan for school nutrition that reduces pre-packaged goods and prioritizes sustainability
and fresh food options 

» Design and outfit classrooms consistently to prioritize functionality, innovation, flexible pedagogy, and student engagement 

» Audit all classrooms for compliance with Woodlynde School’s social emotional learning standards and an executive functions accountability checklist
» Reduce environmental waste

» Establish a class and spaces that support sustainability and beautification on campus

» Sustain and expand allied and community spaces available on campus to lift student voices and foster a more inclusive community 

» Raise funds to support the creation of an Innovation Lab and the relocation of The Literacy Institute
» Make the Mullen Fitness Room accessible and encourage teams, students, and colleagues to utilize it to its fullest potential

» Complete a campuswide accessibility assessment using ADA Standards for Accessible Design 

» Review past architectural plans, including deferred maintenance, and complete a future needs assessment with an eye toward seeding the ground for the campus’s next master plan and capital campaign

» Invest in indoor and outdoor spaces that support excellence in learning and innovation in teaching 

» Build an Innovation Lab and create an expanded home for The Literacy Institute 
Priority IV
The Woodlynde of Tomorrow
Stewarding our resources in visionary, pragmatic ways for our successors
Action Items 

» Refine admissions processes and materials with an eye
toward personalization 

» Grow and professionalize Woodlynde School’s parent ambassador program 

» Create policies and processes to accurately capture racial and ethnic data from families

» Implement community-wide DEI communication policies and procedures

» Develop advisory panels to increase access to expert knowledge and promote educational excellence and community partnership  
» Pursue partnerships with colleges, universities, and other educational institutions 

» Capture descriptions, responsibilities, and time allotments for critical roles, building a database of personnel needed to support Woodlynde School’s long-term strategies alongside regularly updated position descriptions and organizational charts 

» Complete a threat matrix and crisis communications plan for Woodlynde School, including the drafting and regular maintenance of ready-made responses 
» Create a business plan for The Literacy Institute exploring potential earned revenue from expanded Wilson® Reading System training, executive functions coaching, tutoring, and/or psychoeducational evaluations 

» Establish a mission statement and programmatic agenda for The Literacy Institute to grow Woodlynde School’s reputation 

» Write a scope of work for Woodlynde School’s Blackbaud administration needs to support retaining a full-time database administrator and webmaster

» Integrate an equity lens across Woodlynde School’s programs and practice 

» Increase Woodlynde School’s capacity to attract, enroll, and retain mission-fit students 

» Expand the visibility, impact, and reach of The Literacy Institute to further Woodlynde School’s financial sustainability 

» Establish systems and policies to support significant growth in major, legacy, and endowment giving 

» Secure a national profile for Woodlynde School 
Woodlynde School welcomes and serves students who learn differently and empowers them to become strategic thinkers and self-advocates in a challenging and supportive college preparatory environment.
Woodlynde School is a private, co-ed college prep day school located in suburban Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, that serves intelligent, talented students with learning differences in grades K - 12. Woodlynde provides a comprehensive, evidence-based Kindergartenelementarymiddle and high school program in a challenging yet nurturing environment for students with average to above average cognitive abilities (IQ) who have language- or math-based learning differences (such as Dyslexia, Dysgraphia or Dyscalculia), Executive Function Challenges, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), or Auditory Processing Disorder. Even for those students without a diagnosed learning disability (LD), Woodlynde offers expert and caring teachers in small classroom settings that support academic success. Woodlynde School also offers a post-graduate (PG) program in partnership with Rosemont College as well as a regional Summer Camp for students who learn differently.