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School Improvement - School Accreditation

October 12, 2016

We are very excited to report that Johnson County Central Public Schools received the AdvancED distinction of accreditation for a five-year term.  This follows the completion of the steps in the school improvement cycle and the results from the external team review in held in April 2016.

For four days in April, Johnson County Central Public Schools hosted an external team for the AdvancED school improvement review.  This team composed of Jerry Morgan, a Field Consultant and Facilitator from Indiana, SuAnn Witt, State Erate Coordinator from the Nebraska Department of Education, Karen Flora, a Field Consultant from Indiana, Sheree Person-Pandil, an educational consultant from the Educational Service Unit #3 in Omaha, and Dr. Christopher Prososki, PK-12 Principal from Diller-Odell Public Schools.  

The team conducted a comprehensive evaluation of the school district through 78 formal interviews, 35 classroom observations, a review of diagnostic instruments, a self-assessment report, and data and evidence presented by the district personnel.  The team examined the school’s adherence to the five AdvancED standards including:  Standard 1-Purpose and Direction, Standard 2-Governance and Leadership, Standard 3-Teaching and Learning, Standard 4-Resources and Support Services, and Standard 5-Using Results for Continuous Improvement.  When the team concluded their visit, they shared their findings with school board members, administrators, faculty, and staff.  This report was then sent to the AdvancED Accreditation Commission with a recommendation for accreditation.

The review team made the following conclusions from their visit.

  • There is a sense of community, trust, and pride from all stakeholders. They stated we  have a welcoming and inviting environment, and there is an importance and focus on building relationships with students.  

  • The system has a vast array of data in support of their school improvement efforts.  The school improvement goal to “improve reading comprehension through the direct and explicit teaching of vocabulary.”  Test scores reveal a significant increase in reading comprehension.  The external team was impressed with the vocabulary that students used to express themselves during interviews.

  • The district identified the need for a system-wide instructional model that will result in differentiation and challenging learning opportunities for all students.  The district adopted the Marzano Instructional Model and will be receiving training and implementing the program.  

  • The system leadership is committed to a long-term improvement process.

  • The system provides a current and fully functional technology infrastructure and high qualified support staff to meet the needs of staff and students.

  • The school board maintains a distinction between its roles and responsibilities and those of the system and school leadership.  The board is a cohesive unit and complies with all policies, procedures, laws, and regulations.

  • Classrooms are well-managed and supportive of learning.

  • The teachers have established a safe learning environment and were continually monitoring the instruction of the lessons and student progress.  

  • Students were observed being actively engaged in hands-on learning experiences.

The review team identified two improvement priorities that must be addressed and reported on over the next two years.  

  • Develop and implement a systemic plan to systematically train professional and support staff in analyzing student data to monitor and adjust curriculum and instructional practices.

  • Document practices and procedures that guide the development, review, and implementation of continuous improvement and system-wide processes, ensuring that the process includes participation from all stakeholder groups.

AdvancED recently developed a framework to describe the results of an accreditation review.  This is called the Index of Education Quality or IEQ.  The IEQ comprises three domains of performance:  the impact of teaching and learning on student performance, the capacity of leadership to guide the institution toward the achievement of its vision and strategic priorities, and the use of resources to support and optimize learning.  Subsequent actions and evidence for improvement will raise the IEQ score.  

Johnson County Central’s IEQ as compared to the AdvancED Network

 

JCC External Review IEQ Score

AdvancED Network Average

Overall Score

301.46

278.34

Teaching and Learning Impact

291.43

268.94

Leadership Capacity

318.33

292.64

Resource Utilization

302.50

283.23

 

From the chart it is evident that Johnson County Central received scores above the AdvancED average and those scores may increase once the improvement priorities are addressed.

As we celebrate this accomplishment, we are looking at data and determining our next school improvement goal and the next steps in achieving that goal.  

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