Engineer Inclusion

Dayton Public Schools HR Transformation Project

Welcome to the Dayton Public Schools HR Transformation Project Transparency Page!

Here, you’ll find detailed insights into our journey towards creating a more inclusive, efficient, and responsive HR department, including project timelines, our collaborative approach with Socius Strategies, and answers to your frequently asked questions.

The Transparency Page provides a clear, accessible, and detailed view of our ongoing efforts to enhance the HR department, embodying our commitment to openness, inclusivity, and continuous communication throughout this transformative journey.

We aim for this page to serve as a central hub for all stakeholders—staff, administration, and community members—to stay informed about the project’s progress, understand the roles and contributions of different participants, and see how their feedback shapes the future of HR services. Visitors are encouraged to check back regularly for updates and new information as the project evolves.

Our Vision

We are on a collaborative journey to create a best-in-class HR department. Our mission is to foster a culture where every member of our school community feels valued, included, and affirmed.

Project Overview

Dayton Public Schools in partnership with Socius Strategies is undertaking a thorough assessment and evolution of our HR processes. Our approach encompasses a comprehensive review of current practices, active listening to all constituents, and aligning our HR functions with the unique needs of Dayton Public Schools.


2023-11-30: Dr. Lawrence Announces Project via Email

Dear DPS Team,

I want to share an important initiative we’re launching within the Dayton Public School Systems’ Human Resources Department.  We value you and your contributions to the school district, and to support that, we are building on our culture, climate, and systems to enable you to feel valued and appreciated. At the core of this is our commitment to delivering prompt, accurate responses to employee needs, ensuring a seamless and efficient experience for everyone.

Our goal is to redefine HR excellence in Ohio, forging a department where each stage of an employee’s journey, from recruitment to retention, is managed with extraordinary care and efficiency.

Why Need Your Help: To bring our vision to life, we’ve partnered with Socius Strategies, a renowned consultancy from San Francisco. They are known for their collaborative and tailored approach to aligning an organization’s leadership and operations with its goals. We are fortunate to have Dr. Rosalind Cohen, Dr. Meagan Pollock, and Andre Marshall from Socius joining us. Their first step will be conducting a listening tour to gather your valuable insights and experiences related to our HR functions. Your perspectives will help them understand how our systems, processes, and practices support our district’s needs.

What We Need From You: Soon, you’ll receive an invitation to join one of the focus groups scheduled over the next few days. Although there will be four options, please sign up for just one session that fits your schedule. Your voice and your experiences matter. Your insights will be instrumental in guiding our strategies and decision-making processes. We value your suggestions, concerns, and innovative ideas, as they are key to our collective success.

Please note that your contributions in these sessions will be treated with the utmost confidentiality. The team at Socius Strategies will compile the feedback without attributing comments to specific individuals, ensuring an open and honest discussion environment.

Look out for the official invitation in your inbox, and feel free to contact me if you have any questions or need further information. We eagerly await your participation and are confident that your contributions will lead to a fruitful and engaging discussion.

2023-12-05: Dr. Roz Cohen emails HR staff

Angela, Anjanette, Byron, Dana, Erinn, Gary, Kaellyn, Kelsey, Kim, Lara, Marvin, Mary,  Matthew,  Michelle,  Patrick,  Robert, Sharee, Shawntell, Tequia, 

I hope this email finds you well. On behalf of our Socius Strategies team, following up on Dr. Lawerence’s email, I am writing to outline our collaborative journey toward creating a best-in-class HR department.

Our initiative’s cornerstone is a thorough assessment and evaluation of your current HR processes, which involves a comprehensive review and active listening to the insights and experiences of all constituents involved. In our next phase, we will explore HR best practices, juxtaposing these against our findings from the initial assessment. This comparison is not just a mere exercise in benchmarking but a strategic step to tailor industry-leading practices to the unique needs and culture of Dayton Public Schools.

I see our team’s role as supporting and guiding your team through this transformative process. The essence of our endeavor is not just in achieving the goal but in ensuring that the journey there is inclusive, engaging, and enriching for all involved. Together, we will foster a culture of continuous improvement and excellence.

To begin, we would like to invite you to join one of our scheduled focus groups where we can talk about our current process and allow you to share your thoughts in a more collaborative setting. You can  RSVP for a focus group session that fits your schedule by following the links. 

You do not need to attend all but are welcome to do so. If no time fits your schedule, please let me know, as your input will be invaluable in shaping our approach and ensuring that we align with the broader goals of Dayton Public Schools.

We look forward to our collaboration and its positive impact on your HR department and the entire school community. Please feel free to contact any one of the team members with thoughts or questions.

Roz, Meagan, and Andre

2023-12-06+: Dr. Meagan Pollock emails all staff about survey

// why did emails go out over two days? Because of the large email list and email server limitations, only so many messages can go out in one day. Thanks for understanding! 

Dear {First},

As part of the initiative to transform the Human Resource (HR) processes at Dayton Public Schools, your input is invaluable. Dr. Lawrence recently highlighted the significance of this project in an email last week, and now, your opportunity to shape the future of your district’s HR is here.

Please take a moment to fill out this brief survey and share your thoughts on current HR operations and ideas for improvement:

✅ Complete this SURVEY by December 15th to make your voice heard.

Additionally, we will be randomly selecting participants for focus groups to discuss these topics further. If interested, please indicate your willingness to join with one click: Interested or Not Interested

Your insights are crucial in creating a more efficient, inclusive, and supportive HR environment for the Dayton Public Schools community. Thank you for taking the time to contribute to this vital initiative. Your opinions matter, and they can drive meaningful change.

>> Learn more and keep informed of the project here.

Meet the teamRoz Cohen, PhD, and Andre Marshall from Socius Strategies, and me: Meagan Pollock, PhD




Follow up 1

HI, {First},

I hope this message finds you well. If you haven’t had a chance to complete the HR improvement survey we sent recently, we encourage you to do so. Your perspectives and experiences are incredibly valuable to us, and we don’t want to miss out on your input.


Survey Deadline: December 15th

Survey Link: https://jgy8ywo5j2t.typeform.com/DaytonHR


This survey is a crucial step in enhancing the HR processes at Dayton Public Schools. It won’t take much of your time, and your responses will directly influence the future of our HR department.


We understand that this is a busy time, but your insights are essential for us to make meaningful improvements. Please take a few minutes to share your thoughts.


Thank you for your attention to this important matter.


Best regards,


Meagan, Roz, and Andre


Follow up 2

Dear {First},


As the deadline approaches, we’re reaching out one last time regarding the HR improvement survey. Your feedback is crucial, and we want to make sure we have your input.


Can you please complete the Survey by December 15th?

Survey Link: https://jgy8ywo5j2t.typeform.com/DaytonHR


This is more than just a survey; it’s your opportunity to shape the future of HR at Dayton Public Schools. Your unique perspective can lead to significant changes and improvements in our district.


Participation only takes a few moments, but the impact of your voice can be lasting. Please don’t miss this chance to be heard.


Thank you for your valued contribution to your community.


Best regards,


Meagan, Roz, and Andre

Phase 1 Timeline

Gathering Insights

All staff are invited to share their experiences and perceptions through a comprehensive survey. This stage is crucial for capturing a wide range of perspectives across the school district.

Dec 6 - Dec 15, 2023

In-depth Discussions

HR team members participate in focused group sessions. These discussions aim to delve deeper into specific HR processes and experiences, providing rich, qualitative insights.

Dec 11 - Dec 13, 2023

Broadening Engagement

Expanding the conversation to randomly selected staff members who indicated interest from the survey request email through focus groups. This phase is designed to ensure diverse viewpoints are included, and everyone has a voice in shaping the future of HR.

Early January 2024

Synthesizing Feedback

Consultants analyze the data gathered from surveys and focus groups. This analysis is key to understanding the current state of HR and identifying areas for improvement.

Early January 2024

Collaborative Workshop

A pivotal day-long workshop involving HR staff and consultants. This session focuses on collaboratively interpreting the analysis and beginning to envision the path forward.

January 11, 2024

Landscape Analysis Report

The culmination of this phase is the delivery of a comprehensive Landscape Analysis Report. This document outlines the findings and lays the groundwork for the second phase which will propose strategic directions for transforming HR at Dayton Public Schools.

~ February 1, 2024

What you can expect

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of the staff surveys and focus groups?

To gather insights and experiences that will inform the transformation of our HR processes.

How will my feedback be used?

Your feedback will directly influence our strategies and decision-making in HR transformation.

Can I participate in more than one focus group?

Please sign up for just one session that fits your schedule to allow broad participation.

How will my privacy be protected?

Responses will be compiled without attributing comments to specific individuals, ensuring confidentiality.

What happens after the landscape analysis report is delivered?

The findings will guide the next steps in our HR transformation journey, with ongoing communication and engagement.

Who can I contact for more information or if I have concerns?

Please feel free to reach out to any of the contacts provided below for any queries or concerns.

Why did you hire consultants for this project?

Socius Strategies and Engineer Inclusion brings professional expertise in HR processes and organizational culture. Their objective perspective and experience in similar projects will help us identify opportunities for improvement and implement best practices tailored to our unique needs.

Am I going to be blamed for anything?

This project is not about placing blame but about understanding and improving our HR processes. Your feedback is valuable for positive change, and all contributions are seen as constructive and forward-looking.

Are people going to be fired as a result of this project?

No, this is NOT a downsizing exercise. The goal of this project is to enhance our HR operations and culture, not to downsize staff. We are committed to supporting and developing our team, and this initiative aims to strengthen how we work together, not reduce our workforce.

Why am I being addressed by my first name in correspondence??

Addressing people by their first names is a way to reduce power dynamics. As practitioners, this is important to us. Plus it’s not common outside of educational work environments to address people so formally.

In addition, our contact list does not provide preferred honorifics. (Ms., Mrs., Miss, Mr., Dr., etc.) So, since we don’t know, and we don’t want to get it wrong, we are addressing everyone by their first names. We invite you to address us by our first names, too.

Meet the Team

Rosalind Cohen, PhD

Socius Strategies

Roz has 20+ years of HR experience & expertise in fairness & inclusivity. She leverages this to improve organizations.

meagan pollock 2023

Meagan Pollock, PhD

Engineer Inclusion

Meagan has 15 years of experience in schools and using systems thinking to implement intentionally inclusive changes.

Andre Marshall

Andre Marshall

Socius Strategies

Andre is a Socius Strategies intern and Penn State University student studying Labor and Human Resources.

marvin jones dayton

Marvin Jones, II, PhD

Dayton Public Schools

Marvin is the Executive Director of Human Resources at DPS.

Angela Hayes

Dayton Public Schools

Angela is Human Resources Director at DPS.

Erinn Duffy

Erinn Duffy

Dayton Public Schools

Erinn is a Senior Recruiter and Compliance Coordinator at DPS.

Feedback or questions about the project?

Headshot of Dr. Meagan Pollock

Meagan Pollock, PhD

Dr. Meagan Pollock envisions a world where personal and social circumstances are not obstacles to achieving potential, and where kindness, inclusivity, and conservation prevail.

An international speaker, teacher, engineer, and equity leader, her mission is to provide services, tools, and resources that inspire awareness and initiate action.

As an engineer turned educator, Meagan Pollock is focused on engineering equity into education and the workforce.

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