Committed to Planning

As CASBO embarked on CASBO by Design 2.0, the association’s sixth long-term plan, it was a good time to review our history with the discipline of organizational planning.

In very concrete ways, strategic planning has helped CASBO envision its future as a vibrant and significant association in support of public education. Having this type of road map has allowed CASBO to remain focused on its unique mission, goals and objectives, and to respond effectively to a continually changing environment.

The process has also allowed the association to make monumental changes, continue to grow and continue to increase its influence on public school advocacy and policy. Strategic planning and goal setting is a way of life and is part of the culture of CASBO. Simply put, it’s how the association does its work.

It’s also a philosophy which provides the organization with a new life cycle every three to five years. It’s a way to rejuvenate the association, to take a step back, observe the organization from many aspects and move the organization to another level. It’s a method to which CASBO is committed, and the commitment to the process runs so deep that it is included in CASBO’s Manual of Procedures (MOP).

Planning Primer

The work behind CASBO by Design charts the course for the organization in coming years by establishing a mission and goals, listing the steps to be taken to achieve these aims, creating action plans to get there and, finally, implementing specific steps. Due to the depth and breadth of the philosophy, and the associated highly prescriptive procedures, organizational planning is more than a goal-setting mechanism, it’s a belief system — a philosophy in which CASBO has invested.

What emerges from the philosophy and its prescriptive process is a living, breathing document that guides a group’s key movements for approximately three to five years. Rather than being a dusty binder on a shelf in Sacramento, CASBO by Design is a road map that is driven by the grassroots participation of literally hundreds of the association’s members who have volunteered at each step along the way.

Our Commitment

CASBO uses a planning model based on the Cambrian Model (formerly known as the Cambridge Model) and is a planning discipline specifically designed 30 years ago by experts for use in the education arena.

It’s not a private-sector model, but rather a model that was designed to help educators invent their own future.

Our CASBO by Design process starts with the establishment of belief statements for the organization. At the start of each planning cycle, a committee made up of diverse CASBO members and professionals from outside the association meet for three days to spell out the group’s core beliefs and establish the areas of focus. The key strategies identified by the planning team are later passed on to action teams charged with creating the steps to meet these general goals. At this point, the entire plan is reviewed and approved by the board of directors. Another set of groups, the implementation teams, then do the legwork to make the goals a reality for members. Throughout the process, a facilitator monitors plan progress and keeps implementation on task.

Our process also establishes an annual review process under which the chosen strategies are evaluated, and the timing for implementation of specific tasks can be adjusted based on real-time issues.

Another key to CASBO by Design is its requirement that the plan and its later implementation be driven by a large number and diverse cross-section of members. By its very nature, strategic planning calls for a grassroots movement guided by the goals and needs of the membership, not the governance.

The grassroots nature of the planning philosophy carries over to the implementation phase of the plan. It takes literally hundreds of CASBO members, along with the organization’s staff, to implement each plan of action.

In addition to creating a living plan, the strategic planning model behind CASBO by Design ensures that no single official or member can alter the document based on personal objectives. If it hasn’t been spelled out in the plan, it’s not up for consideration.

Incredible Outcomes

The model works, as is evidenced by the successes that have come from CASBO’s previous plans, including: a focus on professional development and certifications for members, the association’s Internet presence, establishment of a Sacramento-based staff and autonomy among CASBO’s far-flung membership sections, improved marketing of the association, the hiring of an in-house legislative advocate, the redefining of the association’s governance structure, and the creation of online learning opportunities.

CASBO by Design begins in the mind’s-eye of planners and then becomes a living document that literally guides the organization for three to five years, providing both momentum and the vehicle for beneficial change.

CASBO by Design is facilitated by former chief business official and CASBO Past President Pearl Iizuka.

Mission Statement

The mission of CASBO, the trusted authority on school business operations, is to support the success of all students through leadership, innovative professional development and advocacy.

Vision Statement

CASBO: The foremost authority on school business.

Belief Statements

We Believe …

Public education is essential to a free and informed society.
Equity is a core value.
Public trust requires personal and professional accountability, responsibility and transparency.
We foster leaders who model integrity, transparency, respect and accountability.
Our diverse membership contributes to the overall success of the organization.
Ongoing professional development is essential to personal success and organizational excellence.
Mentoring develops leaders, promotes growth and builds success.
We excel at providing expertise on issues relating to school business, which is an essential component for public school financial strength and student achievement.
Through political action we can influence policy for the benefit of public education.
Strategic partnerships build success.
Creativity and innovation are vital to remain relevant.
If we are successful, all students win.


We will promote the best interests of students in business decisions.
Our members will always be the priority.
We will embrace and promote ethical standards.
We will solicit, embrace and promote all forms of diversity and inclusion.
We will cultivate an environment that builds trust for all members to feel valued and grow.
We agree that all programs, practices, budgets and decisions must be aligned to our mission.
We will strive for excellence under all conditions.


To develop world-class leaders through professional development, certifications and mentorship opportunities.
To ensure communication and collaboration with partners to demonstrate our commitment to the success of all students.
To be the recognized leader and preeminent advocate for school business operations.
To strengthen our brand position.


Professional Development

We will engage in professional development grounded in adult learning theory that incorporates
just-in-time learning, active participation tailored to member needs and multiple modalities.


We will develop and execute a comprehensive and cohesive marketing plan.


We will advocate for a full range of school business operations through outreach;
education; and a network of members, stakeholders and policymakers.


We will create a consistent road map to develop exceptional, diverse leaders throughout CASBO.


We will provide timely, relevant and engaging information through multiple communication approaches to
meet the diverse needs of our membership and strengthen our presence in the education community.

Need assistance with CASBO by Design 2.0?

Michelle Neto

Governance Liaison
(916) 504-2254