Cherokee County school system earns AdvanceEd Accreditation
The Cherokee County School System has earned its five-year Advanced Accreditation status.
Members of the AdvanceEd team announced the results during a brief AdvanceEd Exit Report meeting held in the Cherokee County Board of Education Central Office.
In attendance, in addition to board members were local school administrators, counselors and other interested parties.
According to some of the AdvanceEd conclusions, the Cherokee County School System received a rating of 2.52 out of a 4.0 scale for equitable learning environment.
The Advance Ed Network Average is 2.69 percent. Other findings were as follows: -High Expectations Environment, 2.63, vs. 2.80 average for AdvanceEd
-Supportive Learning Environment, 2.88 vs. 3.05 average for AdvanceEd
-Active Learning Environment, 2.88 vs. 2.93 average for AdvanceEd
-Progress Monitoring and Feedback, 2,60 vs. 2.76 average for AdvanceEd
-Well-managed Learning Environment, 3.18 vs. 3.12 for average AdvanceEd
-Digital Learning Environment, 2.19 vs. 1.86 for AdvanceEd
On a scale of 400, Cherokee County Schools received a 2.53.33 for leadership capacity and 260 for resource utilization.
Mitchell Guice, superintendent, Cherokee County Schools, introduced the AdvanceEd Team for Cherokee County which included Dr. Rozalyne Wright - Lead Evaluator; Alpha Smith, Dr. Molly Killingsworth. Pamela Daniels and Dr. Jean Swindle.
“We do appreciate you and your team coming in and the time you have spent with us,” said Guice.
“Good afternoon everyone and we hope everyone is doing well this afternoon,” said Dr. Wright.
“We have certainly enjoyed the time the time we have spent in your district. I would like to express appreciation and I am not calling everybody’s names because I would probably mess it up. But I am going to refer to Casey Young because Casey was very, very helpful to me in helping to get everything organized. He responded whenever I contacted him and I greatly appreciate you for doing that.”
“He was not the only one,” said Dr. Wright. “We appreciate all of you for providing our transportation and for just making our stay here pleasant.”
Dr. Wright, who is from St. Petersburg, Florida, retired in 2008 after 36 years in education. She worked as a teacher, assistant principal, principal, coordinator of personnel, director of diversity and executive assistant to the superintendent.
“After retiring I decided I really didn’t want to be retired so I started a company and I am now contracting with AdvanceEd,” said Dr. Wright.
Advance Ed, Dr. Wright said, is the largest community of education professionals in the world. and is a non profit, non partisan organization that conducts rigorous on site external reviews of pre-k schools and school systems to ensure that all learners realize their full potential
“While the organization’s expertise is grounded in more than 100 years of working school accreditation, AdvanceEd is far from a typical accrediting agency,” said Dr.
Wright. “The goal isn’t to certify that schools are good enough, rather the commitment is to help schools improve.”
“The accreditation process is an international protocol for various institutions and is committed to systemic, systematic and sustainable improvement,” said Dr. Wright.
“The external review process is a diagnostic process that is used to stimulate and guide continuous improvement focusing on the impact of teaching and learning, capacity of leadership, and use of resources.”
“The external review process uses professional judgment of the team members and we end up providing powerful practices and opportunities for improvement and improvement priorities and index of education quality and the accreditation recommendation,” said Dr. Wright.
“During our visit, we spoke with four board members, the superintendent, 20 administrators, 35 instructional staff, 18 support staff, 51 students, 44 parents and community members, for a total of 173 stakeholders,” said Dr. Wright.
“We felt we spoke with quite a few people,” she said.
“These are the kind of things we received,” said Dr. Wright, “great, genuine, opportunity, preparing, friendly, community, all inclusive, opportunistic, adequate, home, helpful, proud, family, thankful dedicated, determined, consistent, accommodating, loving, improving, unifying, community, challenging.”
“As we conducted classroom observations, at actually all of your schools, we visited a total of 45 classrooms and we used the Eleot observation tool to conduct the observations,” said Dr. Wright.
“The important thing to note about the Eleot observation tool is that as we go in we are not looking typically at what the teacher is do-
ing but rather what the students are doing.”
“For the equitable learning environment and as you can see there are seven learning environments,” said Dr. Wright.
“Although it shows that it is higher than the AdvanceEd average, we would like for you to note that again we are looking at what the students are doing,” said Dr. Wright. “The students were in this case performing higher with the use of digital devices than the others in the AdvanceEd network average, however that still does not mean that is where they need to be. So when you receive the final report there will be information in it regarding what can be done to improve in that area. The fact that you have so many devices we want to make sure those devices are used.”
“The IEQ results indicate that your institution is performing within acceptable ranges as compared to other criteria that are expected in the comparison with other institutions within the AdvanceEd network and because of that our recommendation is that you be accredited for earned five year accreditation by AdvanceEd,” said Dr. Wright.
While Dr. Wright and the team express their congratulations to the Cherokee County School System and all the work that has gone into the AdvanceEd accreditation, she stressed, the real work now begins as the school system begins implementing the suggestions for improvement listed in the report.
“It is customary that we not provide any more information than I have shared, however you will receive the official report within 30 business days,” note Dr. Wright.
“We appreciate it and we wish you well in your endeavors,” said Dr. Wright.
The next meeting of the Cherokee County Board of Education is Tuesday, April 4, beginning at 6 p.m. in the central office.
ADVANCEED RESULTS FOR CHEROKEE. Dr. Rozalyne Wright with AdvanceEd discusses Cherokee County’s accreditation results following completing of her teams evaluations in Cherokee County. The process involved interviews with students, teachers, administrators and others. She announced that the Cherokee County School System has earned its five-year accreditation.