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STANDARD 3: A School System Demonstrates Internal Connectivity and Rational Equity in Its Program Development and Implementation.

A school system meeting this Curriculum Management Audit standard is able to show how its program has been created as the result of a systematic identification of deficiencies in the achievement and growth of its students compared to measurable standards of pupil learning.

In addition, a school system meeting this standard is able to demonstrate that it possesses a focused and coherent approach toward defining curriculum and that, as a whole, it is more effective than the sum of its parts, i.e., any arbitrary combinations of programs or schools do not equate to the larger school system entity.

The purpose of having a school system is to obtain the educational and economic benefits of a coordinated and focused program for students, both to enhance learning which is complex and multi- year in its dimensions, and to employ economies of scale where applicable.

What the Auditors Expected to Find in the Clover Park School District

The PDK-CMAC auditors expected to find a highly-developed, articulated, and coordinated curriculum in the school system that was effectively monitored by the administrative and supervisory staffs at the central and site levels. Common indicators are:

  • Documents/sources that reveal internal connections at different levels in the system,

  • Predictable consistency through a coherent rationale for content delineation within the curriculum,

  • Equity of curriculum/course access and opportunity,

  • Allocation of resource flow to areas of greatest need,

  • A curriculum that is clearly explained to members of the teaching staff and building-level administrators and other supervisory personnel,

  • Specific professional development programs to enhance curricular design and delivery,

  • A curriculum that is monitored by central office and site supervisory personnel, and

  • Teacher and administrator responsiveness to school board policies, currently and over time.

Overview of What the Auditors Found in the Clover Park School District

This section is an overview of the findings that follow in the area of Standard Three. The details follow within separate findings.

The auditors found that connectivity in the system was in need of improvement. Staff development, although frequently available, was of low quality and unfocused in terms of what teachers actually need. The planning of staff development was not coordinated with diagnoses of teacher skills and competence, and implementation of staff development was ineffective. Staff development wasn’t having much of an impact on teacher behavior in the classroom.

Articulation between grade levels and coordination across classrooms was inadequate. The flow and smooth transitions needed for student learning were not provided adequately in Clover Park. Students were not likely to receive the benefit of a well-designed sequence of learning activities in the system.

Principals monitoring practices were found to be inadequate to assure that the curriculum was being taught. Teachers often don’t see principals as having much skill in helping teachers improve what they teach or how they teach it. Principal training in monitoring of instruction was limited to only a small group of principals.

Clover Park School District Audit Report Page 51

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