The St. Joseph School District received a plaque and banner recently recognizing its new AdvancED accreditation.
AdvancED is an international accrediting agency that conducted an extensive review of the District last spring. Dr. Tina Woolsey, Missouri Director of AdvancED, made the presentation.
Last spring, an AdvancED review team, comprised of five educators from around the country, interviewed nearly 300 teachers, administrators, parents and students; scoured a variety of documents; and observed classrooms as part of the accreditation process. In effect, the process forces districts to measure themselves against several educational standards.
“This accreditation demonstrates that the District has done many things very well,” said Dr. Fred Czerwonka, who assumed the duties of Superintendent on July 1. “I recognize that I am standing on the shoulders of many people. Dr. Melody Smith, the staff, students and parents all made this happen. It speaks well of our District.”
Jenni Gaddie, who coordinates the AdvancED process for the District, said the accreditation is the result of a team effort.
“The review was exhaustive so we are very pleased to have the formal accreditation,” said Ms. Gaddie, who is the Assistant Director of Special Services. “This accreditation is evidence that the District is on the right track.”
The review team noted 10 “powerful practices” of the District, including: professional development of staff; using data to drive decisions regarding student achievement; supportive programs for new teachers; a strong assessment plan; and use of technology to support teaching and learning throughout the District.
Dr. Mark Elgart, President/CEO of the accrediting organization, said, “AdvancED School System Accreditation is a rigorous process that focuses the entire school system on the primary goal of creating lifelong learners. St. Joseph School District is to be commended for engaging in this process and demonstrating a commitment to continuous improvement.”