As one of today’s front page stories notes, the Kershaw County School District (KCSD) received high marks from AdvancED -- a non-profit accreditation organization -- especially in terms of leadership, communication, community relationships, fiscal planning and resource management.
We love our schools and wholeheartedly support the teachers who spend their time, and in many cases their own money, to teach our children. In fact, we believe they should be paid top dollar for everything they do, but that’s a subject for another day.
As glad as we are with AdvancED’s praise of the school district, we can’t gloss over two recommendations for improvement:
1) Doing a better job of setting standards for students to meet, tracking those standards and evaluating how well students are meeting them. Specifically, KCSD Executive Director for K-12 Instruction Support Dr. Alisa Taylor said AdvancED wants the district to, in effect, resurrect pacing guides and providing testing quizzes to make sure students are meeting the guidelines set for them.
2) Evaluating programs of all kinds to make sure all schools are on the same page, but -- and more importantly -- to make sure they are working to students’ benefit and worth the money the district is paying for them.
From what we can tell, the district is going to jump on both these things quickly. We applaud administrators for doing so and for the job they, teachers, staff and others did in receiving the high marks AdvancED gave along with its helpful critique.