GSD Defined as “Fully Accredited”The Grenada School District recently received the rating of “Fully Accredited” from the recent evaluation process conducted with the AdvandED group. Advance Education (AdvancED) is the parent organization for the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI) and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI). Accreditation, a voluntary process for establishing educational excellence, provides regional recognition of our educational quality and sets our District apart by defining the credibility and performance of our District, pronouncing the quality of our educational processes, and providing substantiation for potential residents, businesses, and industries.
In the past, GSD had been involved in individual school accreditation through SACS. Because of the rigor and relevance involved in “District” Accreditation and because we, as a district, believe in the AdvancED philosophy of “unifying school improvement and aligning that improvement with overall district improvement”, GSD chose to be a part of the “District” Accreditation process.
SACS Coordinator Dr. Becky Terry states, “While accreditation is a set of rigorous protocols and research-based processes for evaluating an institution’s organizational effectiveness, it is far more than that. Today accreditation examines the whole institution—the programs, the cultural context, the community of stakeholders—to determine how well the parts work together to meet the needs of students.”
The GSD was visited and analyzed by a Quality Assurance Review Team comprised of professional peers with diverse experience. The review process provided our District and community with validation, recognition, feedback, and a direction for improvement. During the on-site review, team members visited all schools and interviewed a variety of stakeholders including board members, administrators, teachers, staff, community members, and students.
In the report from the review team, Grenada scored highly functional, the highest category in four of the seven standards rubrics. The highly functional category is defined as, “The district is exceptional in its demonstration of the standard and exhibits practices not commonly found in other schools. A small percentage of districts have standards at this level.” The standards receiving the highly functional rating were: 1. Vision and purpose, 2. Governance and leadership, 3. Resources and support systems, and 4. Stakeholder communications and relationships. The remaining three standards were rated at the second highest level, operational, and were listed as follows: 1. Teaching and learning, 2. Documenting and using results, and 3. Commitment to continuous improvement.