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Hillsdale County Intermediate School District Oral Exit Report Quality Assurance Review Team Education Service Agency Accreditation. ESA 2008-09. A Picture of AdvancED. World ’ s Largest Educational Community 23,000 public and private schools 30 states and Navajo Nation

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Hillsdale County Intermediate School District Oral Exit ReportQuality Assurance Review TeamEducation Service Agency Accreditation

ESA 2008-09

a picture of advanced
A Picture of AdvancED
  • World’s Largest Educational Community
  • 23,000 public and private schools
  • 30 states and Navajo Nation
  • Department of Defense Education Activity
  • 65 countries
  • 15 million students
  • 18,000 volunteers
  • 3 million plus teachers


a picture of advanced1
A Picture of AdvancED

Dedicated to Advancing Excellence in Education through:

  • Accreditation
    • Standards, continuous improvement, quality assurance
    • NCA CASI and SACS CASI are the accreditation divisions of AdvancED
  • Professional Services
    • Professional development, technical assistance, conferences, consulting
  • Research and Innovation
    • Publications, resources, tools, evaluation


esa accreditation
ESA Accreditation

A national protocol for education service agencies committed to systemic, systematic, and sustainable improvement

Builds the capacity of the ESA and its partners to increase organizational effectiveness and sustain student learning

Stimulates and supports improvement and effectiveness throughout the agency


esa accreditation1
ESA Accreditation

Ensures all people, processes, departments and operations of the agency work in concert

Strengthens efforts to meet accountability requirements

Encourages growth beyond compliance to achieve excellence

Promotes continuous not episodic improvement


systems approach
Systems Approach

ESA Accreditation applies a systems approach to improvement. It examines how all elements of the agency work in concert for the benefit of improving learner performance.It looks for examples of systemic, systematic, and sustainable improvement.

Systemic improvement – using and aligning the interdependent functions within and across the agency to produce improvement

Systematic improvement – fostering improvement efforts that are regular and predictable at all levels of the agency

Sustainable improvement – maintaining improvements over time


pillars of accreditation
Pillars of Accreditation

Meet the AdvancED Quality Standards

Engage in Continuous Improvement

Demonstrate Quality Assurance through Internal and External Review

To earn and maintain ESA Accreditation, agencies must:




Meets the AdvancED Standards for Quality Education Service Agencies

Identifies and guides the implementation of a systemic continuous improvement process

Monitors all schools it operates through a quality assurance process

Prepares and hosts a QAR visit every five years

Schools It Operates

Meet the AdvancED Standards for Quality Schools

Implement the agency’s continuous improvement process

Participate in the agency’s quality assurance process


purpose role of the quality assurance review team
Purpose & Role of the Quality Assurance Review Team

Determine the extent to which the agency meets the AdvancED standards.

Assess the efficacy of the agency’s improvement efforts.

Evaluate the effectiveness of the agency’s methods for quality assurance.

Provide high-quality feedback with clear recommendations and actionable next steps.

Make an accreditation recommendation.


activities of the quality assurance review team
Activities of the Quality Assurance Review Team
  • Artifacts/documents review
  • Interviews
  • Visits to agency-operated schools and a sample of school districts it serves
  • Observations
  • Professional deliberations
interviews with constituents and other stakeholders
Interviews with Constituents and Other Stakeholders
  • During the on-site Quality Assurance Review, team members interviewed:
    • The Superintendent
    • 3 members of the Governing Board
    • 26 members of agency staff
    • 9 district-based administrators
    • 9 school-based administrators
    • 25 teachers and staff
    • 15 parents, community members, and business partners
    • 38 students

TOTAL of 126 constituents and other stakeholders

    • 45 classroom visits
criteria used to arrive at the team s findings
Criteria Used to Arrive at the Team’s Findings
  • When reviewing evidence to arrive at its findings, the team:
    • Sought an agency-wide perspective;
    • Pursued evidence that could be corroborated through multiple sources;
    • Examined the context and capacity of the agency in relation to its vision, mission, and beliefs; and
    • Applied the criteria for accreditation.
structure of team s findings
Structure of Team’s Findings


  • Strong and effective practices, processes, or systems which benefit the agency

Opportunities for Improvement

  • Suggestions related to individual standards that can help the agency move forward with improvement efforts


  • Significant accomplishments in meeting and/or exceeding accreditation standards and requirements


  • Actions that will enhance agency effectiveness and improve student learning and district partner performance
  • Collaboration – The ISD provides support and leadership across the county to innumerable groups and has developed quality, on-going relationships that help resolve issues throughout the county for the benefit of students, families, and communities.
  • Partnerships – Established with local districts, local service agencies, colleges, other ISDs, MDE, Michigan Works!, legal system, Hillsdale county and other entities. These trusted partnerships allow for meaningful, high quality collaboration.
  • Responsiveness to constituent needs. There exists a pervasive attitude of deliberately acting to solve problems and find solutions.
  • Provide a variety of services focused on identified needs. Some are typical, some are unique, all are in support of the people of Hillsdale County.
  • Alignment of mission statements across departments and focused on continuous improvement efforts.

The Quality Assurance Review Team commends HCISD for:

  • Collaboration, partnerships, and county wide service to schools and students. There exists a pervasive culture of collaboration and continuous improvement and the efforts to move from “school improvement” to “continuous improvement” are commendable. The ISD effectively aligns resources, human and financial, to support the work of the ISD and its partners.
  • The consistent commitment, passion, and investment to support the achievement of all students throughout Hillsdale County.
  • Innovative approaches to addressing student needs despite challenging economic constraints.
  • Commitment to development and support of professional learning based on alignment of goals to local districts’ and ISD’s mission.
  • Increasing need for services for students and families in Hillsdale County.
  • Providing leadership and innovation across the county while responding to unique local perspectives and challenges.
  • Developing capacity to effectively organize, analyze, and use data to inform decision making that positively impacts effective teaching and learning in local schools and the ISD.
  • Building and maintaining capacity for sustaining these continuous improvement efforts as changes occur and people change.
  • The Quality Assurance Review Team recommends that HCISD :
    • Develop and implement a comprehensive system of organizational evaluation based on clearly defined performance measures through which it will effectively organize, analyze, and use data to inform decision making that positively impacts effective teaching and learning in local schools and the ISD.
  • Build institutional capacity to sustain improvement efforts and services that are independent of individuals.
  • Strategically strengthen communication methods to better inform constituents of the services available through the ISD. Celebrate successes and share data that reflects progress toward goal accomplishment.
next steps
Next Steps
  • Written report of findings submitted within 20 days
  • After receipt of the report, the agency is expected to:
    • Review and communicate the findings.
    • Address the recommendations.
    • Monitor accreditation standards on an ongoing basis.
    • Monitor strategies for improvement.
    • Submit the Accreditation Progress Report.
accreditation recommendation
Accreditation Recommendation
  • The Quality Assurance Review Team recommends to the AdvancED Accreditation Commission that the Hillsdale County Intermediate School District be awarded Education Service Agency Accreditation as a Quality ESA.
  • Once reviewed and approved by the AdvancED Accreditation Commission, the agency and all of the schools it operatesare granted a 5-year term accreditation.
final thoughts
Final Thoughts
  • On behalf of the Quality Assurance Team, we extend:
    • Our appreciation for your hospitality, support, and professionalism;
    • Our respect and acknowledgement of the quality of the ESA; and
    • Our congratulations for your progress toward achieving ESA Accreditation as a quality system.

AdvancED Accreditation

for Quality Education Service Agencies

…helping schools, school systems and education service agencies improve student learning