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Spartanburg School District 3 - AdvancED_Standards_Assessment_Report

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									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) are accreditation divisions of AdvancED.




                     Standards Assessment Report

                     Spartanburg County School District #3
                                           P.O. Box 267
                           Glendale, South Carolina, United States 29346




                    Prepared for the AdvancED Quality Assurance Review


                                    Report Status : Accepted


                               Report Open Date : June 24, 2010
                               Report Due Date : March 1, 2011
                          Report Submitted Date : February 22, 2011
                          Report Accepted Date : February 22, 2011
                                                                                                              Spartanburg County School District #3




                                      Standards Assessment Report
Contents

Introduction & Purpose of the Report . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                    3
Demographics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .        5
Executive Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .           6
Standard 1. Vision & Purpose . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .               15
Standard 2. Governance & Leadership . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                      24
Standard 3. Teaching & Learning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                  36
Standard 4. Documenting & Using Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                        50
Standard 5. Resource & Support Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                       60
Standard 6. Stakeholder Communications & Relationships . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                   75
Standard 7. Commitment to Continuous Improvement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                 82
QA Methods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     92
Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   95
Standards Assessment Report Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                        97




AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                                                                      Page 2 of 98
                                                                          Spartanburg County School District #3



                 Introduction & Purpose of the Report

Introduction

Purpose of the Report

The Standards Assessment Report is designed to serve as a valuable self-assessment and as a tool to help school
systems prepare for their Quality Assurance Review. The report is based on the AdvancED standards, which serve
as the foundation of the accreditation process. In order to earn and maintain accreditation, school systems must
meet the AdvancED standards, engage in a process of continuous improvement, and demonstrate quality
assurance through internal and external review.

The Standards Assessment Report engages the school system in an in-depth assessment of each of the seven
AdvancED standards. In completing the report, the school system identifies the data, information, evidence, and
documented results that validate that it is meeting each standard. This self assessment helps the school system
identify areas of strength and opportunities for improvement.

The Standards Assessment Report also serves as the primary resource for the Quality Assurance Review Team,
which uses the report to prepare for the visit to the school system. The team uses insights gathered from the report
and information obtained during the on-site visit to provide feedback to the school system and to make an
accreditation recommendation.



Structure of the Report

The Standards Assessment Report includes four sections: 1) a review of each standard; 2) a description of the
school system's methods for quality assurance; and 3) conclusion.

The review of each standard is divided into three components: 1) the Indicators rubric; 2) focus questions; and 3)
overall assessment rubric. The Indicators rubric enables the school system to assess the degree to which practices
and/or processes are in place that indicate adherence to the standard and Indicators. For each Indicator, the school
system may check if the practices and/or processes are highly functional, operational, emerging, or not evident.
The school system should use the rubric as an opportunity to ask itself challenging questions and to respond with
accurate answers geared toward self-improvement. After completing the rubric, the school system can quickly see
areas of strength and opportunity. The section asks, "To what degree are the noted practices/processes in place?"

The focus questions allow the school system to expand on and think more deeply about the responses to the
Indicators rubric. The focus questions provide an opportunity for the school system to describe the systematic and
systemic processes that are in place to support its ability to meet the Indicators. The section asks, "How are the
practices/processes implemented?"

The overall assessment describes how well the school system and its schools are implementing practices and/or
processes and the impact these practices and/or processes have on student results and overall school effectiveness.
The overall assessment helps the school system judge where it is in relation to each standard. The "operational"

AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                   Page 3 of 98
                                                                          Spartanburg County School District #3

level is required in order to demonstrate meeting the standard. The section asks, "How well are we meeting the
standard overall?"

The description of the school system's methods for quality assurance should include an overview of the practices
and methods the school system uses to monitor and document improvement, provide meaningful feedback and
support across the district, ensure that the AdvancED standards are met and strengthened, and regularly collect,
use, and communicate results.

The conclusion provides an opportunity for the district to share final insights and information.

Completion and Submission of the Report

This Standards Assessment Report is to be completed by the school system between six months and six weeks
prior to hosting a Quality Assurance Review (QAR) visit. It is strongly recommended that a wide and broad cross-
section of the school system's community participate in completing this report. The report will become the basis of
the Quality Assurance Review Team's review.

Directions for Completing the Report

Follow the instructions to complete each section of the report. Be thorough and concise in your answers, focusing
on quality and depth over quantity.




AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                  Page 4 of 98
                                                                Spartanburg County School District #3



                                  Demographics

 # Elementary Schools:        4

 # Middle Schools:            2

 # High Schools:              1

 # Other:                     1

 Grade(s):                    PK,K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12

 Enrollment:                  3884




AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                     Page 5 of 98
                                                                           Spartanburg County School District #3



                                     Executive Summary
Please provide an overview of the school system's profile. Please include:

      The school system's vision and goals;
      A description of the programs and services (including number and type of schools) under the jurisdiction of
      the system;
      Demographic information about school system's community;
      A summary of student performance across the system;
      An overview of any major trends or issues impacting the school system; and
      A summary of the major strengths and needs of the school system.

Section 1
Executive Summary School System Profile
________________________________________
District Accreditation – Standards Assessment Report


Executive Summary of School System Profile

The Community
Spartanburg School District Three is one of seven school districts in the county of Spartanburg, South Carolina.
Located in the northwestern part of the state, Spartanburg is 98 miles northwest of Columbia, 80 miles west of
Charlotte, and about 190 miles northeast of Atlanta. The district serves students and families who reside in seven
distinct communities in eastern Spartanburg County. The district borders Cherokee County to the east, Union County
to the south, Spartanburg School District Two to the north, and Spartanburg Districts Six and Seven to the west.
District Three, about three and a half miles wide and 14 miles long, includes approximately 50 square miles.

A college community, Spartanburg County features seven institutions of higher learning:
• The University of South Carolina Upstate, a state-supported institution formerly known as the University of South
Carolina Spartanburg, or USCS
• Converse College, a women’s liberal arts institution with a co-ed graduate school, founded in 1889
• Wofford College, a small, co-ed liberal arts institution, founded in 1854
• Spartanburg Methodist College, the only two-year, private, residential college in the state
• Spartanburg Community College, a two-year institution offering technical education to the citizens of Spartanburg,
 Cherokee, and Union counties
• Sherman College of Straight Chiropractic, South Carolina's only chiropractic college
• The Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine, expected to open in the fall of 2011

Demographics
According to the United States Census Bureau, the population of Spartanburg County is 286,822. Of those,18,500
reside in Spartanburg School District Three. Spartanburg County residents are approximately 72 percent (72%) white;
21 percent (21%) African-American; five percent (5%) Hispanic; and three percent (3%) other ethnic origins. Seventy-
three percent (73%) are high school graduates, and eighteen percent (18%) have a Bachelor’s Degree or higher.
Median household income is $45,000; 14 percent (14%) live below the poverty level.

In comparison to the demographics of the county, fourteen percent (14%) of district students are African-American;
seventy-eight percent (78%) are white; four percent (4%) are Hispanic; and approximately three percent (3%) are of
other ethnic origins. Fifty-nine percent (59%) of the students qualify for free/reduced-price meals.



AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                      Page 6 of 98
                                                                              Spartanburg County School District #3

In 2010-11, the district serves 3043 students in very well-maintained and functional facilities, including four elementary
schools (K-5); two middle schools (6-8); and one high school (9-12). The Daniel Morgan Technology Center serves
students in Spartanburg County school districts Three and Seven.

The district employs 452 staff members. Of those, 272 are certified employees; 180 are classified staff. According to
the 2009 District Report Card issued by the state of South Carolina, 66% of district teachers hold advanced degrees;
28 teachers are certified by the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards. Of all classes taught, 99.4% are
staffed by instructors who are “highly qualified” under the guidelines of No Child Left Behind.

The average student attendance rate is 95 percent; average teacher attendance rate is 96 percent. Transportation is
provided to over 1300 students (45%) each day.

Strategic Plan

The district defines its commitment to quality educational experiences for all students through the District Strategic
Plan. The plan defines overall district direction, guides district and school priorities, and serves as the basis of human,
financial, and operational decisions. Originally developed in 1997 by a diverse group of district and community
stakeholders, the strategic plan reflects the values-based process known as the Cambridge model, created by Bill
Cook and Associates. Thirty individuals, including principals, teachers, district staff, corporate leaders, PTO/SIC
members, higher education representatives, and other community leaders, comprised the original planning team.
Similarly structured groups were convened in 2002, 2005 and 2010 to repeat the process. The strategic plan is
updated annually.
The strategic plan articulates clear beliefs, a mission, performance objectives, and parameters (fundamental rules)
that serve as the plan’s foundation.

BELIEFS
We believe that:
• All people have an inherent potential to learn.
• All people have worth.
• All people are unique, and diversity strengthens the group.
• The family is the foundation of society.
• Equal educational opportunity is critical to our society.
• People are our greatest resource.
• Learning is a lifelong process.
• Supportive community involvement is essential for effective education.
• Public education is the foundation of a democratic society.
• The needs of children come first.
• Education empowers the individual.

MISSION
The mission of Spartanburg School District Three…..steeped in history, focused on the future…..is to equip our students
to thrive economically as productive citizens by ensuring challenging and relevant learning experiences in a healthy,
safe, nurturing environment.

PARAMETERS
• We will always make decisions in the best interest of students.
• We will never sacrifice the safety and security of students and staff.
• We will always give priority to the preK-12 instructional program.
• We will always deal honestly and fairly with people and issues.
• We will never tolerate harassment or discrimination in any form.
• We will never give up on a child.

The strategic plan also includes four desired, measurable performance objectives:
• One hundred percent of our students will master or exceed essential grade-level achievement standards.
• One hundred percent of our students will successfully complete their individual achievement goals.

AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                          Page 7 of 98
                                                                               Spartanburg County School District #3

• One hundred percent of our students will complete their Individual Graduation Plan and be equipped to enter post-
secondary education or their career after graduation.
• One hundred percent of our students will develop positive character traits and civic virtue through school programs
and service to our community.

To comply with directives of the South Carolina Department of Education (SDE), the district has developed a
companion document to its strategic plan (often called the Act 135 plan, due to the legislation under which it is
mandated) that outlines the district’s five-year plan of action for achieving the desired outcomes specified in the
strategic plan.

As mandated by SDE, the Act 135 plan includes performance goals related to three major dimensions of the
teaching/learning process: student achievement, teacher/administrator quality, and school climate. Each of the
performance goals is supported by a series of interim (annual) performance goals, strategies, and action plans. Action
plans include specific activities to be undertaken during the five-year period, implementation timelines, leadership
responsibilities, and benchmarks for measuring progress. The plan is updated annually; each update is approved by
the district’s Board of Trustees.

The District Strategic Plan is the guide for all activities at the district and school levels. School improvement plans are
developed to reflect and support the district plan. All plans are updated annually. Through frequent observation and
review of pertinent data, district-level personnel closely monitor plan implementation at the school level.

The district maintains a comprehensive profile of the system, the students, and the community. Available at both the
district and school levels, data are maintained electronically through multiple systems. Human resources are allocated
in accordance with strategic plan initiatives, and financial resources are prioritized and budgeted to support the district
plan.


STUDENT PERFORMANCE

The district uses a variety of summative and formative assessments to measure and analyze changes in student
performance. State-mandated assessments include:

• Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) in English language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies
in grades three through eight

• High School Assessment Program (HSAP) exit examination in English language arts and mathematics, which
students take for the first time in grade 10

• End-of-Course Examination Program (EOCEP) in selected high school subjects, currently Algebra I, English I,
Physical Science, Biology and United States History and Constitution

• Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS) and the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT), administered in grade two for
gifted/talented program identification

Formative assessments include the Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA), standards-based elementary report
cards and Measures of Academic Progress (MAP).

PASS and HSAP are summative assessments used as the accountability measures for schools and districts in South
Carolina. Students who score at the exemplary or met levels on PASS are considered ready for the next grade.
Students taking HSAP must score at the basic level or higher as one criterion for earning a high school diploma.
Students have four opportunities throughout their high school careers to pass all sections of the exit examination.

Outcomes resulting from the 2009-10 PASS, HSAP, Advanced Placement, ACT and SAT administrations are
subsequently summarized.

AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                          Page 8 of 98
                                                                              Spartanburg County School District #3


Performance Summaries

        2009-2010 State End of Course Test results for Spartanburg District Three ranked us above the State in
        Algebra I, English I, and Physical Science for the third consecutive year. Our 91% passage rate In Algebra
        I/Math for the Technologies 2 ranked us first in our Upstate region. This is a 7.5% in-crease from 2008-2009.
        We are extremely pleased that the percentage of students passing Physical Science also increased 11.5% from
        2009 to 73.7% in 2010. This significant increase ranked us first in our region and more than 14% above the
        State.
        Performance on the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) in ELA, math, science, and social studies
        showed that our students met or exceeded the State average of students meeting standard in 25 of 30
        categories (83%), two more than last year. Other (PASS) high-lights were:
        Science performance exceeded the state average in all grades for a second consecutive year.
        Writing performance exceeded the state average in all grades except grade eight.
        Social Studies performance exceeded the state average in all grades except grade four.
        Math performance exceeded the state average in all grades except grade six.
        All elementary schools in Spartanburg School District Three met federal Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP). This
        is important for schools that receive federal Title I funds because not meeting AYP carries consequences.
        National Advanced Placement (AP) test results showed significant improvement. The percentage of students
        receiving college credit increased from 44% to 79% in English Language Composition, 42% to 71% in English
        Language and Literature, 60% to 80% in European His-tory, and 57% to 64% in United States History. Broome
        High School exceeded the South Carolina AP passage rate with 69% versus 55%. Nine Broome High School
        students were recognized as AP Scholars.

District PASS Performance – Percentage of Students Meeting Standard

                                        Grade Three

             ELA             Math           Science          Social Studies     Writing

 Year        Met Standard    Met Standard   Met Standard     Met Standard       Met Standard

 2009        76.5            67             67.9             81.6               69.6

 2010        79.4            77.1           68.1             84.5               73.5




                                         Grade Five

             ELA             Math           Science          Social Studies     Writing

 Year        Met Standard    Met Standard   Met Standard     Met Standard       Met Standard

 2009                 79.2           72.1             70.8            71.7                72.1

 2010                 78.2           71.6             73.9            71.9                75.3




                                         Grade Six
AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                    Page 9 of 98
                                                                            Spartanburg County School District #3



          ELA              Math           Science          Social Studies     Writing

 Year     Met Standard     Met Standard   Met Standard     Met Standard       Met Standard

 2009              81.9           75.4              78.2            83.5                76.9

 2010               75            66.3              63.6            82.1                72.5




                                     Grade Seven

          ELA              Math           Science          Social Studies     Writing

 Year     Met Standard     Met Standard   Met Standard     Met Standard       Met Standard

 2009              72.4           74.8              78.5            69.3                75.8

 2010              77.3             74              83.8              78                 75




                                     Grade Eight

          ELA              Math           Science          Social Studies     Writing

 Year     Met Standard     Met Standard   Met Standard     Met Standard       Met Standard

 2009              74.3           63.2              80.3            67.5                68.2

 2010              63.6           62.4              84.5            70.4                67.2




High School Assessment Program – Grade 10 First Attempt Percent Passing Both Subtests

 Year     Broome          State

 2008     81.4            80.8

 2009     79.5            76.1

 2010     81.1            78.6




AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                Page 10 of 98
                                                                             Spartanburg County School District #3


Advanced Placement Program – Percent with Scores of “3 to 5”

 Year        Broome         State

 2008        54             57.1

 2009        55             57

 2010        67             56




State Mandated End of Course Tests – Percent Passing

 Course                          BHS 2008    State 2008    BHS 2009   State 2009    BHS 2010     State 2010

 Algebra 1 / Math Tech II        86.2        78.3          80.3       91            91           80.2

 English 1                       78.2        68.4          74         75.8          75.8         73.7

 Physical Science                63.7        55            64         73.7          73.7         59.1

 U.S. History                    N/A         N/A           42.9       42.4          44.8         46.3




ACT – Composite Scores

             Composite Scores

 Year        BHS          State

 2008        19.3         19.9

 2009        19.6         19.8

 2010        19.7         20




SAT – Seniors Mean Scale Scores

                  Critical Reasoning                Math                      Writing            Composite

 Year        BHS            State           BHS           State       BHS           State      BHS       State

 2008        485            488             517           497         481           476        1484      1461


AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                    Page 11 of 98
                                                                              Spartanburg County School District #3

 2009       493            486            521            496            486            470        1501         1452

 2010       479            501            493            516            485            492        1457         1509




Programs and Services

The district’s commitment to effectively serve its diverse population is multi-dimensional and is reflected
programmatically through a variety of innovative programs and services.

        • Data derived from Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), a formative assessment system administered in
        kindergarten through grade 9, helps to diagnose student academic strengths and weaknesses and inform
        instructional planning.

        • Technology-enriched classrooms support quality teaching and learning.

        • Academically talented students are served through the district’s ATLAS – Academic Teachers Leading
        Accelerated Students - program, available in a pull-out resource model for elementary students; middle school
        students are served through accelerated/honors English language arts and mathematics courses. Fourteen
        and one-half percent (14.5%) of the students in grades 3-12 qualify for academic gifted/talented services.
        ATLAS art and ATLAS music are offered for the twelve percent (12%) of district students who qualify as
        artistically talented.

        • Broome High School currently offers eight Advanced Placement (AP) courses. Eligibility for AP courses is
        determined by PSAT/SAT and/or Explore/PLAN/ACT scores, prerequisite courses taken, and teacher
        recommendation. In 2009-10, 63 students took a total of 93 AP examinations; 67% earned college credit by
        achieving scores of 3 or higher.

        • The Scholars Academy program, a partnership of the seven Spartanburg County school districts and
        University of South Carolina Upstate, provides select high school students the opportunity to take college
        courses during the school day at no cost, while completing the requirements of their high school program in
        their home school. On average, students completing the Scholars Academy program are usually ready for the
        junior year in college.

        • The district serves students in the least restrictive environment, according to need, in a full continuum of
        special education programs, including general education with support services, self contained, homebound,
        and home-based. Fourteen percent (14%) of the student population qualifies for special needs services other
        than speech; four percent (4%) qualify for “speech only” services.

             For students who need academic intervention and assistance, the district offers a variety of options:
             Extended day/after-school programs provide academic enrichment, remediation and homework
             assistance.
             The Victory Credential Program at Broome High School provides opportunities for students with special
             needs to learn functional academic, personal, social, and occupational skills that prepare them for life-
             long, independent living, productive employment, and responsible citizenship.
             The Accelerated Learning Program (ALP), implemented at Daniel Morgan Technology Center and
             Spartanburg School District Seven, enables students who have fallen behind to recover course work, get
             back to grade level, and graduate with their class.
             The Academic Reinforcement Center (ARC), a computer lab housed at Broome High School, offers
             immediate intervention for students who are experiencing difficulties in their academic core subjects.
             The Spartanburg County Alternative School provides alternative learning opportunities for students from
             all seven Spartanburg County districts who are not successful in the regular classroom because of

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                                                                           Spartanburg County School District #3

            disciplinary issues.

Numerous awards and honors earned by Spartanburg District Three and its schools provide evidence of the district’s
progress on its continuous improvement journey.

       • The district and its schools have earned 96 communications awards/recognitions since 1996.

       • Cannons, Clifdale, and Cowpens elementary schools have been named by the United States Department of
       Education as National Blue Ribbon Schools.

       • Broome High School was awarded a bronze medal by US News and World Report in its 2009 article
       “America’s Best Schools.”

       • Cannons, Clifdale, Cowpens and Pacolet elementary schools and Middle School of Pacolet have earned
       “Red Carpet” awards, given by the State Department of Education to schools that demonstrate an inviting,
       family friendly environment.

       • Broome High School and Daniel Morgan Technology Center have received Palmetto Gold awards, given by
       the State Department of Education to recognize schools for making significant student achievement gains.
       Cannons, Clifdale, Cowpens, and Pacolet elementary schools and Middle School of Pacolet have earned
       Palmetto Silver awards.

       • Clifdale and Cannons elementary schools were recognized as Healthy Schools by the South Carolina
       Department of Education.
       • The district has been honored by the American Association of School Administrators, eSchool News and
       Technology and Learning journal for excellence in integration of technology into the teaching/learning process.

       • The district’s superintendent was named Administrator of the Year by the South Carolina Association of
       School Administrators (2004), the South Carolina Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development
       (2004), the South Carolina Guidance Counselors Association (2005), the South Carolina School Social
       Workers (2005), and the South Carolina Career and Technology Educators (2007) and the South Carolina
       Association of School Superintendents Superintendent of the Year (2006).

Trends and Issues Impacting the District

       Benefits

       • The district employs the greatest percentage of teachers in the state (45%) who have post-Master’s
       degrees.

       • The district enjoys strong parental support. At the elementary and middle school levels, over 90 percent of
       parents regularly attend parent/teacher conferences.

       • When poverty is considered, District Three, which ranks seventh on the poverty scale but fourth in student
       achievement, performs well compared to the 10 upstate districts in this region which include the seven
       Spartanburg County districts, Greenville, Cherokee, and Union.

       • The expanding research base related to effective instructional practice has provided a strong foundation for
       professional development across the district.

       • The on-time graduation rate continues to improve.

       Limitations


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                                                                             Spartanburg County School District #3

      • Funding for education continues to erode, due to a stagnant tax base in the community, adverse economic
      conditions, and legislation (Act 388) that eliminated residential property taxes as a source of education funding
      state-wide.

      • Because the district’s geographic area is fixed, there is no opportunity for significant student population
      growth; the district’s enrollment, which has declined by about 15% over the past 30 years, has declined only
      slightly over the past five years.

      • Fewer than one-half of the district’s students are being raised in the traditional family structure.

      • Because of many parents’ low aspirations for their children, many students do not recognize the value of
      education or its connection to their future.

      • Data indicate that the incidence of high-risk youth behaviors among district students is on the rise.

      Major Strengths
      • Civic-minded, passionate members of the Board of Trustees who work for the common good of the district
      and its students
      • Continuously improving student achievement
      • High quality administrators and teachers
      • Small class sizes
      • State-of-the-art facilities
      • Comprehensive analysis and use of data for instructional planning
      • Clear focus on technology to support the instructional process
      • Strong emphasis on safety for students and staff
      • Comprehensive system of safety nets for at-risk students
      • Strong sense of family; caring relationships among adults and between adults and students; strong support
      for teaching/learning from district and school administrators

      Challenges
      • Low parental/community aspirations for children
      • Increasing incidence of high-risk behaviors among youth
      • Deterioration of the traditional family structure
      • High poverty among district families and the associated issues that often result
      • Inadequate funding to support quality education for all student




AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                       Page 14 of 98
                                                                         Spartanburg County School District #3



                         Standard 1. Vision & Purpose

STANDARD: The system establishes and communicates a shared purpose and direction for improving the
performance of students and the effectiveness of the system.

Impact Statement: A system is successful in meeting this standard when it commits to a purpose and direction
that is shared system-wide. The leadership establishes expectations for student learning aligned with the system's
vision that is supported by system and school personnel and external stakeholders. These expectations serve as the
focus for assessing student performance and district effectiveness. The system's vision guides allocations of time
and human, material, and fiscal resources.

Indicators Rubric: Please indicate the degree to which the noted practices/processes are in place in the school
system. The responses to the rubric should help the school system identify areas of strength and opportunities for
improvement as well as guide and inform the school system's responses to the focus questions.

Indicators Evidence: For each Indicator, click the (Add Evidence) link to provide examples of evidence that
support the rubric response.

Definitions of Indicators Rubric:

           Not Evident                 Little or no evidence exists
           Emerging                    Evidence indicates early or preliminary stages of
                                       implementation of practice
           Operational                 Evidence indicates practices and procedures are actively
                                       implemented
           Highly Functional           Evidence indicates practices and procedures are fully
                                       integrated and effectively and consistently implemented



INDICATORS: In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

1.1 Establishes a vision and purpose for the system in collaboration with its stakeholders:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Leadership demonstrates stakeholder support

Mission Statement visible throughout the district

Policies/Procedures manuals/handbooks demonstrating stakeholder involvement in development of mission

Stakeholder perception data used to develop mission

Stakeholders are knowledgeable about vision, mission

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Strategic Plans include mission

Vision, mission statements include all elements of stakeholder inclusion

Other: Title I Plan; Annual Report to the People; Meeting Agendas/Minutes

1.2 Communicates the system's vision and purpose to build stakeholder understanding and support:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Meetings incorporate elements of vision, mission

Newsletters include vision, mission

Signage includes vision, mission

Stakeholders are knowledgeable about vision, mission

Website/page includes vision, mission

Other: Board Policy; District Safety Plan; District Technology Plan; Meeting Agendas/Minutes

1.3 Identifies system-wide goals and measures to advance the vision:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
District and school improvement planning incorporates vision, mission

District Improvement Plan includes vision, mission

Goals distributed through publications and communication

Goals that are data-driven and measurable

Stakeholders demonstrate involvement in and knowledge of goal setting

Strategic Plan includes vision, mission

Strategic planning incorporates vision, mission

Other: Meeting Agendas/Minutes; Annual Report

1.4 Develops and continuously maintains a profile of the system, its students, and the community :
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Annual Report

Community-based data
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District Improvement Plan

District profile is used during parent/community meetings

District profile is used during staff meetings

Newsletters, articles

Publications, brochures, handbooks

Stakeholders demonstrate knowledge of District profile

Other: District/School Websites

1.5 Ensures that the system's vision and purpose guide the teaching and learning process and the strategic
direction of schools, departments, and services:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District and school improvement planning demonstrates alignment with vision, mission

District Curriculum demonstrates alignment with vision, mission

District Improvement Plan demonstrates alignment of vision, mission with teaching and learning

Extra -curricular activities incorporate vision, mission

Policies on instructional practices demonstrate alignment with vision, mission

Policies on lesson plan development and deployment demonstrate alignment with vision, mission

Strategic Plan demonstrates alignment of vision, mission and teaching and learning

Student report cards demonstrate alignment with vision, mission

Other: Superintendent Priorities Document; District Budget Documents; Spartanburg 3 Interventions; District and
School Safety Measures

1.6 Reviews its vision and purpose systematically and revises them when appropriate:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes for strategic planning demonstrate review

Strategic Plan demonstrates review

Strategic planning process demonstrates review by stakeholders

Other: District/School Budgets
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Focus Questions:

1. What is the process for establishing and building understanding of and commitment to the vision statement
among the school system and its stakeholders?

The district’s strategic plan defines overall district direction, guides district and school priorities, and serves as
the basis of all human, financial, and operational decisions. Originally developed in 1997 by a diverse group of
district and community stakeholders, the strategic plan reflects the values-based planning process known as the
Cambridge model, created by Bill Cook and Associates. Thirty individuals, including principals, teachers, district
staff, corporate leaders, PTO/SIC members, higher education representatives, and other community leaders,
comprised the original planning team. Similarly structured groups were convened in 2002 and 2010 to repeat the
process. The strategic plan is updated annually.

The strategic plan articulates clear beliefs, mission, vision, performance objectives and parameters (fundamental
rules) that serve as the plan’s foundation.

BELIEFS
We believe that:
• All people have an inherent potential to learn.
• All people have worth.
• All people are unique, and diversity strengthens the group.
• The family is the foundation of society.
• Equal educational opportunity is critical to our society.
• People are our greatest resource.
• Learning is a lifelong process.
• Supportive community involvement is essential for effective education.
• Public education is the foundation of a democratic society.
• The needs of children come first.
• Education empowers the individual.

MISSION/VISION
The mission of Spartanburg School District Three…..steeped in history, focused on the future…..is to equip our
students to thrive economically as productive citizens by ensuring challenging and relevant learning experiences
in a healthy, safe, nurturing environment.

PARAMETERS
• We will always make decisions in the best interest of students.
• We will never sacrifice the safety and security of students and staff.
• We will always give priority to the preK-12 instructional program.
• We will always deal honestly and fairly with people and issues.
• We will never tolerate harassment or discrimination in any form.
• We will never give up on a child.

PERFORMANCE OBJECTIVES
The strategic plan also includes four desired, measurable student performance objectives:
• One hundred percent of our students will master or exceed essential grade-level achievement standards.
• One hundred percent of our students will successfully complete their individual achievement goals.
• One hundred percent of our students will complete their Individual Graduation Plan and be equipped to enter

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post-secondary education or their career after graduation.
• One hundred percent of our students will develop positive character traits and civic virtue through school
programs and service to our community.

To comply with directives of the South Carolina Department of Education (SDE), the district has developed a
companion document to its strategic plan (often called the Act 135 plan, due to the legislation under which it is
mandated) that outlines the district’s five-year plan of action for achieving the desired outcomes specified in the
strategic plan.

As mandated by SDE, the Act 135 plan includes performance goals related to three major dimensions of the
teaching/learning process: student achievement, teacher/administrator quality, and school climate. Each of the
performance goals is supported by a series of interim (annual) performance goals, strategies, and action plans.
Action plans include specific activities to be undertaken during the five-year period, implementation timelines,
leadership responsibilities, and benchmarks for measuring progress. The plan is updated annually; each update is
approved by the district’s Board of Trustees.

District priorities, aligned with the strategic plan, are established annually by the Board and superintendent, in
collaboration with district and school leaders and the District Three Leadership Council. The Leadership Council,
born from the original strategic planning process in 1997, is made up of 30 individuals, two-thirds of whom are
non-employee community leaders. The Council, which meets quarterly, includes representatives from each of the
geographic areas of the district (Cannons, Clifton, Converse, Cowpens, Glendale, Pacolet, and Whitestone). The
Council’s priorities include commercial/infrastructure development, community development (including
schools), and government representation.

The district communicates its vision/mission on a regular basis through a variety of media, including the
district/school websites, district/school newsletters, the Annual Report to the People, and various publications,
brochures, and newspaper articles. The slogan “steeped in history….focused on the future” is included in all
district publications. Agendas for School Improvement Council (SIC) and Parent Teacher Organization (PTO)
meetings regularly include agenda items related to the district’s vision and goals, as do programs for school Open
House events.

The district’s beliefs and mission statement are prominently displayed in the district office and in each school,
and staff members are reminded of them at the opening-of-school meeting each year. Information sent to realtors,
business leaders, faith community partners, and other interested community members includes the district’s
beliefs, mission, and vision statements. The Annual Report to the People summarizes the district’s progress on
each strategic plan goal, both district-wide and by school.

2. What is the system's process for maintaining and using information that describes the school system, its
programs, services, and schools and their performance?

The district maintains a comprehensive profile of the system, the students, and the community. Available at both
the district and school levels, data are maintained electronically through multiple systems, among which are the
following:

• PowerSchool, a state-wide student information system, and PowerTeacher, an electronic grade book system,
are used by appropriate district and school personnel to access student grades, attendance data, health data, and
general student information. ParentPortal provides parents of students in grades 3-12 secure access to their child’s
grades and attendance information.

• TestView is an electronic warehouse for student achievement data that is available to district and school
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administrators, teachers, and guidance counselors. Teachers have access to information related only to their
current students.

• Northwest Evaluation Association website provides easy access for teachers to students’ scores and related
information from Measures of Academic Progress (MAP). Teachers have access to information related only to
their current students.

• Excent, a state-wide system related specifically to special education, is maintained by the Department of
Special Services at the South Carolina Department of Education. The system can be accessed by state and local
special education personnel.

• Destiny is used state-wide for textbook and media center management. District and school textbook
coordinators have access to the textbook management component of the system, while media specialists, school
administrators, teachers, students and parents can access media center information.

• CSI, a financial management and accounting system, supports payroll processing, accounts payable, capital
asset tracking, budget building and tracking, and employee benefits management.

• MealTrakker is used to manage Food Service funds.

• School Dude enables the district to monitor and manage maintenance and technology requests and to respond to
the requests in a timely and appropriate manner.

• AlertNow broadcasts information to stakeholders by phone regarding district/school emergencies, schedule
changes, and upcoming events.

• Time Clock tracks the hours worked by all non-certified personnel.

• SchoolRecruiter is a leading on-demand applicant tracking and hiring management system specifically
designed to fit the needs of K-12.

• E-Chalk enables district and school staff to share school and class information, including homework
assignments, class photos, and links to helpful websites that support learning.

3. How does the leadership ensure that the system's vision, purpose, and goals guide the work of the school
system and its schools?

The Board of Trustees, through its oversight function, actively assures that the District Strategic Plan guides the
district and its schools. The Board approves each newly developed district plan (1997, 2002, 2010), as well as the
school renewal plans and all annual plan updates. Individual board members have served on both the strategic
planning teams and the supporting action teams.

In 2003, the Board supported and approved a complete review and revision of district policies to assure the
alignment of all policies with the fundamental beliefs, mission, and parameters cited in the district strategic plan.
Since that time, district policies have been reviewed and updated each year based on model policies of the South
Carolina School Boards Association (SCSBA).

The Board and superintendent, in collaboration with district and school leaders, establish annual district priorities,
aligned with the strategic plan. Priorities are reviewed with all administrators at an annual leadership workshop
each summer, and with all faculties, SIC’s, and PTO’s at the beginning of each school year.
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District and school staffs annually develop specific, measurable goals that are related to student achievement and
aligned with the district strategic plan; goals are data-based, collaboratively established by the appropriate parties,
and considered as a part of each individual’s performance evaluation.

• The Board of Trustees establishes the superintendent’s annual goals.
• The superintendent approves annual goals of district leaders and principals.
• School goals are included in the School Renewal Plan.
• Teacher goals are approved by the principal.

The superintendent meets with principals annually to discuss progress toward goals and several times each year to
discuss MAP outcomes and other relevant achievement data. Similarly, principals meet regularly with teachers to
discuss achievement data. Students also promote district and school goals.

District resources are prioritized and allocated to support the district’s vision.

• Human resources are allocated in accordance with strategic plan initiatives.

      Teachers and instructional staff are allocated in sufficient numbers to meet district teacher/student ratio
      standards.
      District leaders ensure that all certified staff are highly qualified, as defined by No Child Left Behind.
      Quality, appropriate professional development is provided for all staff; all professional development
      activities support the district’s strategic plan.
      Professional development for teachers and instructional leaders supports the strategic plan and facilitates the
      planning and implementation of effective instructional strategies and assessments in all content areas.

• Financial resources are prioritized and budgeted to support the district plan.

• Technology is evaluated and upgraded regularly.

• Instructional materials and supplies are provided by formula and support the initiatives outlined in the district
strategic plan.

Other activities through which district leaders ensure that the system’s vision, purpose, and goals guide the work
of the school system and its schools include the following:

• The superintendent’s cabinet meets weekly to ensure that district priorities and activities are aligned with the
current strategic plan.

• Regular meetings of principals, assistant principals, department and team leaders and other staff groups promote
a focus on results.

• Principals meet regularly with district leaders to address the implementation of the district’s vision, purpose,
and goals.

• Collaboration and professional dialogues related to improved student achievement occur regularly at the district
and school levels.

• Initiatives, such as High Schools that Work, Making Middle Grades Work, and Technology Centers that Work,
enable schools to develop and monitor goals that support the vision and purpose of the district. These initiatives
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describe vertically articulated instructional processes and practices through which all students can achieve high
academic standards.

• District administrators and instructional leaders monitor progress toward achievement goals by visiting schools;
observing classrooms; conducting individual conferences; and consulting regularly with principals, school
administrators and teachers.

4. What process is used to ensure that the vision and purpose of the school system remain current and aligned
with the system's expectations in support of student learning and the effectiveness of the school system and its
schools?

The District Strategic Plan is the guide for all activities at the district and school levels. School renewal plans are
developed to reflect and support the district plan. All plans are updated annually and approved by the Board of
Trustees. Through frequent observation, conferences, and review of pertinent data, district-level personnel closely
monitor plan implementation at the school level.

Some schools are subject to additional requirements imposed by the state or federal government and must extend
the planning process to meet additional requirements.

• Title l schools are required to prepare an annual plan that complies with all requirements of the Title I process.
• One school that receives technical assistance funds prepares an online summary verifying the use of TA funds
to support school improvement initiatives.

District systems/documents that support the strategic plan are also updated annually, including the district’s
technology plan; district and school professional development plans; Curriculator, the district’s electronic
curriculum guide; teacher long-range plans; individual student graduation plans; IDEA Individual Education
Plans; and academic assistance plans, as appropriate.

District and school leaders establish yearly priorities, based on the district plan, to guide the work of their staffs.
Individual school goals, also aligned with the district plan, are established in conjunction with the school
improvement planning process.

District and school goals and expectations are reviewed with School Improvement Councils and PTO members at
regularly scheduled meetings. They are communicated with the general public through the district’s website,
frequently published district and school newsletters, and other available media.
The district communicates the system’s vision, beliefs, mission, performance goals, strategies, and results-related
information, both internally and externally, in a variety of formats:
• School Report Cards, published by the state of South Carolina, are made available to parents and other
stakeholders annually.

• Schools develop and publish newsletters; many teachers prepare and disseminate weekly/monthly newsletters to
parents; teachers have classroom websites that focus on teaching, learning, and student achievement.

• The district and school websites are updated regularly to keep parents, the community and employees informed
about the district’s progress toward its vision and goals.

• Public meetings/presentations are held regularly to inform and receive feedback from parents, school faculty,
students, legislators, and community members about district progress.

The district’s philosophy, consistent with that of Edwards Deming, is to continuously look for ways to improve
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systems and processes through the use of solid best practice research, strong data tools, and state-of-the-art
technology.


Overall Assessment:

Operational: The school system has committed to a shared purpose and direction. The system and its schools
have clearly defined expectations for student learning aligned with the system's vision that is supported by system
and school personnel and external stakeholders. These expectations serve as the focus for assessing student
performance, system and school effectiveness. The vision guides allocations of time and human, material, and
fiscal resources.




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               Standard 2. Governance & Leadership

STANDARD: The system provides governance and leadership that promote student performance and system
effectiveness.

Impact Statement: A system is successful in meeting this standard when it has leaders who are advocates for the
system's vision and improvement efforts. The leaders provide direction and allocate resources to implement
curricular and co-curricular programs that enable students to achieve expectations for their learning. Leaders
function with clearly defined authority and responsibility and encourage collaboration and shared responsibility
for system and school improvement among stakeholders. The system's policies, procedures, and organizational
conditions ensure equity of learning opportunities and support for innovation.

Indicators Rubric: Please indicate the degree to which the noted practices/processes are in place in the school
system. The responses to the rubric should help the school system identify areas of strength and opportunities for
improvement as well as guide and inform the school system's responses to the focus questions.

Indicators Evidence: For each Indicator, click the (Add Evidence) link to provide examples of evidence that
support the rubric response.

Definitions of Indicators Rubric:

           Not Evident                 Little or no evidence exists
           Emerging                    Evidence indicates early or preliminary stages of
                                       implementation of practice
           Operational                 Evidence indicates practices and procedures are actively
                                       implemented
           Highly Functional           Evidence indicates practices and procedures are fully
                                       integrated and effectively and consistently implemented



INDICATORS: In fulfillment of this standard, the system operates under the jurisdiction of a governing authority
that:

2.1 Establishes and communicates policies and procedures that provide for the effective operation of the
system :
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes of governing authority meetings

District-wide Staff and/or student handbooks

Governance Policy handbooks: board, district, school


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Governing authority affirms understanding of their role in the operation of the school/district

Local, state, and federal policy handbooks

Organizational chart

Procedural policies: emergencies, contact information, calling tree, discipline, due process, logistics, placement
and transfer

Staff and students affirm their understanding of emergency and operational procedures

Stakeholders affirm understanding of operational procedures

Students and staff affirm their understanding of discipline policies and due process

2.2 Recognizes and preserves the executive, administrative, and leadership authority of the administrative
head of the system:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District staff are knowledgeable about leadership prerogatives

District staff are knowledgeable about organizational chart

District staff demonstrate knowledge about due process

Governing Board Policies demonstrate leadership prerogatives

Organizational chart

Policies demonstrate protocols for remediation and due process

Roles and responsibilities of governing board, advisory councils, and ad hoc committees are clearly outlined

2.3 Ensures compliance with applicable local, state, and federal laws, standards, and regulations:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District staff are knowledgeable about curriculum standards

District staff demonstrates knowledge and use of curriculum standards in the teaching and learning process

District staff responsible for the implementation of state and/or federal programs are knowledgeable about
compliance

Documentation of adherence to ethical business practices

Documentation of compliance with all regulations regarding copyright law, intellectual property, and international
restrictions


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Documentation of State and Federal Compliances and Assurances, including NCLB/Title I, EEO, Title IX

Documentation of utilization of all requirement elements of curriculum standards

Documentation with all regulations that apply to accreditation by NCA CASI, SACS CASI, or AdvancED

Stakeholders affirm compliance with Equal Employment Opportunity practices and procedures

Stakeholders affirm compliance with ethical business practices

Stakeholders are involved in the establishment and monitoring of adherence to all regulations

2.4 Implements policies and procedures that provide for the orientation and training of the governing
board:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
District staff and governing board members affirm their knowledge of governing board policies and procedures

District staff and governing board members affirm their participation in orientation and training

Policies and procedures for governing board training and orientation

Roles and responsibilities of governing board, advisory councils, and ad hoc committees are clearly outlined

2.5 Builds public support, secures sufficient resources, and acts as a steward of the system's resources:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Documentation of adherence to ethical business practices

Policies and procedures for fiscal planning: short-term and long-range

Stakeholders affirm compliance with Equal Employment Opportunity practices and procedures

Stakeholders affirm compliance with ethical business practices

Other: Procurement Documents/Purchase Orders

2.6 Maintains access to legal counsel to advise or obtain information about legal requirements and
obligations:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District staff are knowledgable about due process and complaint resolution

District staff are knowledgeable about access to legal counsel

Documentation of access to legal counsel

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Other: Staff affirm their involvement in the accreditation process

2.7 Maintains adequate insurance or equivalent resources to protect its financial stability and
administrative operations:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District staff affirm knowledge and support for the district's fiscal responsibility

District staff affirm knowledge of district's insurance carrier, policies, and procedures

Policies and procedures for investments

Policies and procedures for protecting assets and financial resources

INDICATORS: In fulfillment of this standard, the system has leadership that:

2.8 Provides for systematic analysis and review of student performance and school and system effectiveness :
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Advisory Committee: agenda, minutes

District staff affirm the use of student performance and organizational effectiveness data for planning

District Staff meetings: agenda, mintues, decision points

Evaluation results: professional development, efficiency, effectiveness, instructional programming, etc.

Record of student performance data analysis

Student database management system

Student performance data are used during district staff meetings

Student performance data are used for extra-curricular planning

Student performance database for formative assessments

Other: Staff affirm their involvement in the accreditation process

Other: Student Athlete Handbook

2.9 Creates and supports collaborative networks of stakeholders to support system programs:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Artifacts displayed throughout the district demonstrate inclusion of all stakeholder communities


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Calendar, agendas, minutes of stakeholder meetings

Committee members are representative of all stakeholder groups

Policies for staff/student leadership opportunities outside the district environment

Record of Advisory Committees: calendars, membership, minutes

Record of co-curricular organizations and activities: calendars, membership, sponsors

Stakeholder survey data

Stakeholders affirm a sense of belonging and engagement

Stakeholders affirm that leadership hears and acts upon their suggestions and recommendations

Stakeholders affirm their involvement in a district-wide decision-making process

Stakeholders affirm their involvement in the accreditation process

Stakeholders affirm their involvement on committees

Website provides forum for feedback and dialogue

Other: Accreditation team members are representative of staff; Title I Compacts

2.10 Provides direction, assistance, and resources to align, support, and enhance all parts of the system in
meeting organizational and student performance goals:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Budget reflects allocation of support for student performance targets

District staff are knowledgeable about student performance targets

District staff are knowledgeable about the alignment of resources to support student performance

District-wide walk-abouts demonstrate monitoring of instructional practices

Guidelines outline expectations for instructional standards

Guidelines outline expectations for student performance

Organizational chart reflects allocation of support for student performance targets

Policies demonstrate established student performance targets, measures, and strategies

Other: District Strategic Plan; School Renewal Plans; Title I Plan; Title III Plan; Student Handbooks

2.11 Provides internal and external stakeholders meaningful roles in the decision-making process that
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promote a culture of participation, responsibility, and ownership:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Accreditation team members are representative of stakeholder groups

Calendar, agendas, minutes of stakeholder meetings

Committee members are representative of all stakeholder groups

Policies and procedures established for the inclusion of all stakeholers into appropriate district-wide decision
making processes

Stakeholders affirm their involvement in a district-wide decision-making process

Stakeholders affirm their involvement on committees

Other: Title I Compacts

2.12 Assesses and addresses community expectations and stakeholder satisfaction:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Artifacts displayed throughout the district demonstrate inclusion of all stakeholder communities

Record of Advisory Committees: calendars, membership, minutes

Stakeholder survey data

Stakeholders affirm their satisfaction with their level of involvement

2.13 Implements an evaluation system that provides for the professional growth of all personnel:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
District staff are knowledgeable about access to and participation in a professional growth program

District staff are knowledgeable about the criteria, timeline, process, procedures, and dispositions by which they
will be evaluated

Documentation of salary schedules

Handbooks demonstrate staff evaluation system

New staff orientation materials

Policies demonstrate evaluation criteria, timelines, and termination processes

Policies demonstrate professional growth opportunities

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Professional development plan for all staff

Focus Questions:

1. What is the process for establishing, communicating, and implementing policies and procedures for the
effective operation of the school system and its schools?

The district’s nine-member Board of Trustees meets on the third Thursday of each month to fulfill its governance
and oversight roles. All members are elected at- large for four year terms. Board officers (chair, vice-chair, and
secretary) are elected annually. Board members are not compensated for their service.

Board meeting agendas, developed collaboratively by the board chair and superintendent, are aligned to the
district’s strategic plan. Board agendas and minutes may be accessed by stakeholders through the local media and
through the district’s website, http:// www.spartanburg3.org.

The Board of Trustees governs through comprehensive policies that provide clear direction to district processes,
procedures, and activities. District policies are closely aligned with and reflect model policies developed and
supported by the South Carolina School Boards Association (SCSBA). A district policy manual is available in the
district office and in each school. Additionally, policies can be accessed online through the district’s website.

Board policy outlines the process whereby new policies are developed and adopted and current policies are
modified. Policies are reviewed regularly for compliance with federal and state legal mandates and requirements.

The district has contractual agreements with outside counsels for assistance with legal matters. The law firm
Lyles, Darr, and Clark is employed by the Board to handle local legal issues; a representative attends all board
meetings. Legal matters related to specialty areas, such as school law, bonded indebtedness, or other financial
matters, are handled by attorneys with expertise in those specific areas. Only the Board and superintendent have
the authority to enter into contractual agreements for legal counsel.

The superintendent’s cabinet, comprised of six district leaders, meets weekly to discuss issues related to the
strategic plan; to establish and monitor district priorities, processes, policies, and procedures; and to address
concerns as they arise. The focus is on continuous improvement. Cabinet members are responsible to share
outcomes of the discussions with their staffs. The superintendent also meets with all district supervisors monthly.

The superintendent and district administrators meet twice monthly with principals to discuss relevant issues and to
hear concerns and suggestions for moving the district forward. Principals are responsible to share outcomes with
their staffs.

The School Improvement Council at each school, comprised of parents, community members, teachers, and
students, meets regularly to discuss school-related matters, to review data pertaining to student achievement and
other functions within the school, and to provide suggestions to the principal for continuous school improvement.
Board policies and procedures are discussed, as appropriate.

The agenda process for each board meeting provides opportunity for public comment, during which members of
the general public can voice opinions on issues about instruction, school-related services, and district-related
issues. Individuals wishing to speak must make the request prior to the meeting; each is allowed five minutes to
address the board. Because the superintendent and district leaders consistently practice an open-door approach to
stakeholders, appearances by citizens at board meetings are rare.


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A comprehensive system for input and feedback is operational across the district. In addition to providing public
comment opportunities at Board meetings, the district welcomes feedback at principals’ meetings, faculty
meetings, student council meetings, and at meetings of the Spartanburg Leadership Council and the district’s
Communications Council.

The Leadership Council, born from the original strategic planning process in 1997, is made up of community
leaders from each of the seven geographic areas of the district (Cannons, Clifton, Converse, Cowpens, Glendale,
Pacolet, and Whitestone). The Communications Council is an internal body, which includes representatives from
each employee group. Both groups meet quarterly with the superintendent to discuss district priorities and issues
of concern.

2. What process does the system's leadership use to evaluate system effectiveness and its impact on student
performance?

District and school administrators, district support staff, school leadership teams, and classroom teachers regularly
review and analyze student achievement data from both summary and disaggregated perspectives. Achievement
measures include the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS); High School Assessment Program
(HSAP); End of Course Examination Program (EOCEP); SAT/ACT; PLAN/PSAT; Advanced Placement (AP);
Measures of Academic Progress (MAP); and classroom grade distributions. Attention is also given to critical non-
achievement measures, such as student and teacher attendance and student discipline. Other data of interest
include graduation rates, Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) summaries; outcomes of the Education Oversight
Committee Report Card Survey; School Report Card information; scholarship awards, and first-year college
performance of prior year seniors.

The superintendent’s annual evaluation is based on district priorities and goals established by the board and
aligned with the district’s strategic plan. The Board determines, based on the data presented by the superintendent
for each respective goal, whether the goal will remain on the priority list for the subsequent year. The
superintendent meets regularly with district staff, school faculties, parents, students, legislators, and community
members to provide updates on district progress toward the goals. With a view toward continuous improvement,
all presentations and discussions are data-based and related to both achievement and non-achievement variables
and to outcomes of the annual state parent/teacher/student surveys. Data summarizing progress on respective
goals are published annually in the district’s Annual Report to the People.

A similar evaluation process is followed annually at each school. The principal leads the faculty in a review of
goals-related data; the subsequent year’s school renewal plan is updated to reflect the outcomes of the review.
Principals meet with the superintendent each fall to review progress on prior-year goals and present goals for the
current year. Teachers help students to set data-based goals and monitor their progress regularly.

The district’s personnel evaluation processes are designed to support and facilitate professional growth and
improvement that promote enhanced student achievement. Principals are evaluated formally every three years and
informally on interim years; teachers and other professional staff are formally evaluated every three years, using
the appropriate state evaluation model. Classified personnel are evaluated less formally on an ongoing basis. The
development of formal evaluation instruments for all classified employees is nearing completion.

Program evaluation is data-based and is an ongoing priority of the district. Recommendations for program
continuation or for new programs are grounded in research and applicable program-related data. Program
effectiveness is also assessed through student, staff, and parent surveys, interviews, and other qualitative
measures. The district assures that all programs reflect strategic plan priorities.

Other efforts through which the district’s leadership evaluates system effectiveness include the review of data
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resulting from the annual evaluations of all federally funded programs, such as Title I, Special Education, High
Schools that Work, Making Middle Grades Work, and Technology Centers that Work.

3. In what ways are stakeholders, including system and school staff, given opportunities to provide leadership
and to contribute to the decision-making process?

Board members are visible and actively involved in a variety of leadership roles at the local and state level.

• Prior to the budget crisis, Board members have regularly attended national and state conferences, including
conferences sponsored by the South Carolina School Boards Association (SCSBA) and the National School
Boards Association (NSBA).

• To foster strong working relationships across the community, board members serve as liaisons to community
initiatives that support and enhance the district.

District staff have held offices in state-level organizations, such as the South Carolina Association of School
Administrators (SCASA); the South Carolina Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (SC-
ASCD); the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Coalition; and the South Carolina
Education Association (SCEA). Staff also serve on state committees focused on teaching and learning, such as the
academic standards committees, curriculum-writing teams, and assessment groups. District and school
administrators participate in state-level leadership development initiatives, such as the SCASA Emerging Leaders
Academy, the Principal Induction Program, and the Tapping Executive Educators Program.

Teachers are given opportunities for leadership and feedback through a variety of forums:

• Teachers serve as grade level/subject area lead teachers, as department chairs, and as members of the school’s
leadership team.

• Teachers serve as members of district committees for instruction, technology, and communications.

• Teachers served on standards teams in preparation for district accreditation.

• Teachers provide input to several district/school processes, including curriculum development, textbook
selection, policy development/implementation, and discipline procedures.

• Teachers serve as leaders/facilitators for district and school professional development; the district held its first
Summer Teaching and Learning Institute, facilitated by district teachers for district teachers, in 2009.

• Teachers participate in recruitment events and serve on interview panels for district and school positions.

• Teachers serve as part-time administrative interns.

Students demonstrate leadership through participation in student government, school clubs and organizations,
athletic teams, performing arts groups, Junior Leadership Spartanburg, Rotary Youth Leadership Academy, the
Rotary-sponsored program Interact, district and school career and technology committees, Boys’ and Girls’
State, and the Governor’s Schools.

Stakeholders collaborate with the district to provide leadership and contribute to decision-making processes.

• A School Improvement Council (SIC) at each school, comprised of parents, teachers and community members,
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meets regularly to review school data and other information, provide input on school operations, and make
recommendations for improvement.

• Parent/Teacher Organizations (PTOs), band, choral, and athletic booster clubs are actively involved in school
activities, fundraising, and volunteer efforts.

• The district collaborates with higher education institutions, including USC-Upstate, Spartanburg Community
College (SCC) and Converse, to improve student achievement.

• Title I schools host a variety of parental involvement activities and training sessions annually.

• Stakeholders participate in the strategic planning process at both the district and school levels, serve on the
Spartanburg Leadership Council, and were involved in the standards teams in preparation for district
accreditation.

• Stakeholders serve as advisors to the Daniel Morgan Advisory Board, the DMTC Industry Councils and various
college/university initiatives.

• Stakeholders participate in the Spartanburg County Community Indicators Project.

• Stakeholders were heavily involved in the design of the 650-seat community auditorium at Broome High
School, completed in 2010.

4. What policies and processes are in place to ensure equity of learning opportunities and support for
innovation?

Human, material, and financial resources are allocated to schools equitably, based on allocation formulas.
Formulas are established to align to strategic plan goals and to comply with Board policy and federal and state
mandates. Technology funding is budgeted and allocated equitably in accordance with the district’s technology
plan. District guidelines specify maximum class sizes for all instructional levels.

Special programs (gifted/talented, academic assistance, Title I, Career/Technology Education, Special Education)
help to facilitate learning for specific groups of students. Gifted/talented students are identified and served in
accordance with state guidelines. All special education students are served in the “least restrictive environment,”
as defined by the federal government. Title I provides funding on an equitable basis for low-income schools; Title
IX oversight assures equity of opportunity in athletics.

The Board of Trustees actively supports the district’s school choice plan. All district schools are “choice”
schools; admission is subject to space availability and to the student’s prior attendance and behavior. Students
who live on an attendance line between two districts may choose the district in which to attend school.
Transportation is the responsibility of the student and/or parents.

The district promotes innovation and quality classroom practice through a variety of support initiatives:

• Data derived from Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), an assessment system administered in kindergarten
through grade 10, helps to diagnose student academic strengths and weaknesses and inform instructional planning.

• Technology (e.g., Promethean Boards, computer labs, classroom computers, digital cameras, and electronic
personal response systems) is available to support quality instruction in all schools.


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• Innovative practices, such as balanced literacy program, MMGW, HSTW, Project Lead the Way and Green
Stem technology course have been implemented in the district.

• Special programs support students who are struggling in the regular classroom and in danger of dropping out.


      The Spartanburg County Alternative School provides alternative learning opportunities for students from all
      seven Spartanburg County districts who are not successful in the regular classroom for disciplinary and
      other reasons.

      The Accelerated Learning Program (ALP), implemented in cooperation with the Daniel Morgan
      Technology Center and Spartanburg School District Seven, enables students who have fallen behind to
      recover course work, get back to grade level, and graduate with their class.

      The Academic Reinforcement Center (ARC), a computer lab housed at Broome High School, offers
      immediate intervention for students who are experiencing difficulties in their academic core subjects.
      Students can recover class time due to excessive absences; make up tests; work on assignments, using Nova
      Net software; and prepare for standardized assessments, such as SAT, ACT, HSAP, and End-of-Course
      examinations. Certified English, mathematics, and science teachers staff the center.

      Extended day schooling is provided for students in need of academic assistance.

      Students who go to attendance labs at individual schools receive high quality instruction while recovering
      seat time.

      A full time graduation coach at Broome High School assists at-risk students to complete high school
      requirements successfully.

      CARE Teams and School Assistance Teams operate at each school to collect information about students
      who are experiencing difficulty, listen to concerns and plan interventions.

      The Gateway and LINK programs at SCC are collaborative efforts between Spartanburg Community
      College and the seven Spartanburg County School Districts that are designed for high school students (ages
      16-20) who have found attending high school difficult or challenging but desire to earn a high school
      diploma. Students earn both high school and college credit for courses taken through both programs.

• High achievers have opportunities for enrichment through Advanced Placement (AP) courses, dual credit
courses offered in partnership with USC-Upstate, SCC and Wofford, virtual credit courses, and the Scholars
Academy. Through the Scholars Academy program, a partnership of the seven Spartanburg County school
districts and University of South Carolina Upstate, high school students take college courses during the school day
at no cost, while completing the requirements of their high school program in their home school.




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Overall Assessment:

Operational: The school system has leaders who are advocates for the system's vision and improvement efforts.
The leaders provide direction and systematically allocate resources to implement curricular and co-curricular
programs that enable students to achieve expectations for their learning. Leaders encourage collaboration and
shared responsibility for system and school improvement among stakeholders. The system's policies, procedures,
and organizational conditions ensure equity of learning opportunities and support for innovation. While these
processes and conditions are being implemented, the implementation is not systemic across the system, and the
results are varied.




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                      Standard 3. Teaching & Learning

STANDARD: The system provides research-based curriculum and instructional methods that facilitate
achievement for all students.

Impact Statement: Impact Statement: A system is successful in meeting this standard when it implements a
curriculum based on clear and measurable expectations for student learning that provides opportunities for all
students to acquire requisite knowledge, skills, and attitudes. The system ensures that teachers use proven
instructional practices that actively engage students in the learning process; provide opportunities for students to
apply their knowledge and skills to real world situations; and give students feedback to improve their
performance.

Indicators Rubric: Please indicate the degree to which the noted practices/processes are in place in the school
system. The responses to the rubric should help the school system identify areas of strength and opportunities for
improvement as well as guide and inform the school system's responses to the focus questions.

Indicators Evidence: For each Indicator, click the (Add Evidence) link to provide examples of evidence that
support the rubric response.

Definitions of Indicators Rubric:

            Not Evident                  Little or no evidence exists
            Emerging                     Evidence indicates early or preliminary stages of
                                         implementation of practice
            Operational                  Evidence indicates practices and procedures are actively
                                         implemented
            Highly Functional            Evidence indicates practices and procedures are fully
                                         integrated and effectively and consistently implemented



INDICATORS: In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

3.1 Develops, articulates, and coordinates curriculum based on clearly- defined expectations for student
learning, including essential knowledge and skills:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Communication of NCLB performance targets

Curriculum pacing guides

District provides guidelines for lesson plan development that include learning objectives

District staff can articulate student learning expectations

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District staff/others meet regularly to discuss student progress and remediation

District staff/others meetings highlight discussions of student learning expectations

District-wide master schedule; hours of instruction

Formative assessments: quarterlies, etc.

Graphs, charts, displays of student learning goals

Individualized Development Plans

Policies on grading criteria

Policy on credit requirements for program completion

Special program promotion, completion requirements

Staff can articulate curriculum sequencing and grouping

Student Handbook outlines student learning expectations

Students affirm their knowledge of what is expected of them

Syllabi or course catalogues

Textbooks and text selection criteria are aligned to learning goals, curriculum

Other: District Strategic Plan; School Improvement Plans; Teachers? Long-Range Plans; Walk-through
Observation Forms

3.2 Establishes expectations and supports student engagement in the learning process, including
opportunities for students to explore application of higher order thinking skills and investigate new
approaches to applying their learning:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Course syllabi outlining criteria for student involvement

Guidance on lesson plan development show how students are involved in establishing their own learning goals

Samples of student work

Student discussion groups

Student mentoring programs

Students affirm their involvement in their own learning


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Other: District Strategic Plan; School Improvement Plans; Science Kits; Science Fair Projects; Project-Based
Learning Projects

3.3 Ensures that system-wide curricular and instructional decisions are based on data and research at all
levels:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Assessment data

District staff/others can identify research used to align instruction

District staff/others meet to analyze data and align instruction

District staff/others meet to review current research

District staff/others meetings regularly include data analysis

Grade reports

Professional development calendar and topics

Surveys

Transcripts, certificates

Other:

Other: Grade Level Meeting Agendas/Minutes; SREB Documents

3.4 Supports instruction that is research-based and reflective of best practice:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes of staff/grade level/department/program meetings

Cross-content curriculum guides

District staff/others meet to share best practices

District staff/others meetings regularly include discussions about effective instructional design and delivery

Guidance on lesson plan development

Guidance that promotes a variety of instructional design and delivery strategies

Professional development plans

Professional learning opportunities focus on best practice instruction


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Professional organization membership

Student display of project-based learning opportunities

Student portfolios

Other: SREB Documents

3.5 Supports a curriculum that challenges and meets the needs of each student, reflects a commitment to
equity, and demonstrates an appreciation of diversity:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Curriculum includes attention to diversity

District staff are knowledgeable about state and national curriculum standards

District staff are representative of the school and community demographics

Graduation requirements

Master schedule

Policies that reflect attention to issues of equity

Promotion, graduation criteria

Standards-based curriculum: state and national standards

Students affirm that there are opportunities to excel

Other: District Strategic Plan; School Renewal Plans; Title 1 Plans; District Technology Plan; School Handbooks;
Special Program Documents; Intervention Documents

3.6 Allocates and protects instructional time to support student learning:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Instructional calendar: days, hours

Lesson plans are followed during teacher absence

Master schedule

Policies and guidelines that demonstrate that all program requirements are met

Policies demonstrate that substitute teachers are responsible for delivery instruction

Staff affirm that their instructional time is protected

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There are few instructional interruptions: PA system, visitors, etc.

Other: Student Handbooks; Staff Attendance Reports; Standards-based Field Trip Logs

3.7 Maintains articulation among and between all levels of schooling to monitor student performance and
ensure readiness for future schooling or employment:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes of staff meetings indicating vertical and horizontal articulation

Articulation agreements between agencies

Content-specific staff are knowledgeable about each other's course syllabus

District staff are knowledgeable about student learning expectations of previous and subsequent grade levels

Policies and guidelines granting dual-credit, transfer of credit

Other: Individual Graduation Plans; IE/504 Process; Title 1 Plan; School Parent Conference Records; Graduate
Follow-up Survey

3.8 Supports the implementation of interventions to help students meet expectations for student learning :
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
After-school programs

Community-based programs

Counseling programs: curriculum, schedules, staffing

District staff affirm that there are multiple opportunities for students to get support

Individualized Development/Career Plans

Online support

Policies for student orientation, interventions, remediation

Schedule of opportunities, activities that support special learning needs

Students affirm that they have opportunities to explore their interests and career options

Students affirm that they have opportunities to get support for their school experience

Wrap-around programs

Other: Teacher Lesson Plans; Parent Contact Logs; Attendance Intervention Documents; Discipline Referral

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Records

3.9 Maintains a system-wide climate that supports student learning:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Curriculum reflects attention to issues of school climate

Database of student behavioral incidents

District staff affirm that they are involved in promoting positive school climate

District staff/others meetings provide time for discussions about climate

Parents/community indicate that the school/district focuses on positive school/district climate

Policies for student behavior, remediation, due process, appeals

Reward system for positive behavior

Stakeholder Compact: adult and student expectations

Stakeholder satisfaction survey data

Students affirm that they are involved in promoting positive school climate

Other: Budget Process; Personnel Allocation Formulas; Celebrations

3.10 Ensures that curriculum is reviewed and revised at regular intervals:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agendas and minutes from school board meetings (they have to approve the curriculum changes)

Application to seek new course approval and implementation

Calendar of curriculum committee meetings

Data related to implementation of course(s)

District staff affirm that they are involved in the curriculum review and revision process

District staff are knowledgeable about the timeline and process for curriculum review

District staff stays informed of curricular changes in other entities (neighboring districts, state, federal,
organizations)

Local school staff affirm that they are involved in the curriculum review and revision process

Parents/community affirm that they have opportunities to engage in the curriculum review and revision process
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Other: District Strategic Plan; School Renewal Plans; Grade Level Meeting Agendas/Minutes

3.11 Coordinates and ensures ready access to instructional technology, information and media services, and
materials needed for effective instruction:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Budget allocating appropriate funds for technology - software, hardware, and infrastructure

District staff affirm that technology supports their curriculum and instructional programs

Facilities map indicating technology services/lab

Staffing chart demonstrating allocation of appropriate technology staff

Students and staff affirm that technology is embedded within the teaching and learning process

Technology staff/services demonstrate their involvement in support of student achievement

Other: School web pages and newsletters; Media Center Schedules; Purchase Order Status Reports

Focus Questions:

1. How does the system ensure the alignment and articulation of curriculum, instructional strategies, and
assessments in support of the expectations for student learning?

The district’s curriculum is designed to be standards-based and rigorous and to support high expectations for
students and staff. Curriculum, instruction, and assessment are aligned, and a variety of research-based programs
and innovative practices promote and support the achievement of all students.

The district’s curriculum is grounded in the South Carolina academic standards for kindergarten through grade
12. The standards define expectations for student learning and specify essential knowledge and skills to be
acquired at each grade level. All curriculum documents, including key unit standards clustered by nine-week time
periods, suggested instructional strategies, related assessment activities, exemplar lessons, the State’s default
curriculum (S3), and support documents by subject area, are posted online and are accessible to all teachers. In
collaboration with classroom teachers, district staff review, revise, and update curriculum documents annually.

Student learning is assessed through the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS), the Developmental
Reading Assessment (DRA), Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), the High School Assessment Program
(HSAP), and End-of-Course (EOC) tests, all of which are aligned to the state standards. The content areas of
visual and performing arts and physical education utilize state-level program assessments to measure program
quality.

The district provides targeted professional development to address curriculum standards, instructional strategies,
and assessment data. Within each school, teachers meet regularly to discuss instructional strategies that support
the curriculum. Professional, data-based conversations about student learning occur regularly among school
faculty. Teachers have the opportunity to study, analyze, and use data from multiple sources to inform and support
instructional planning. Data resulting from MAP assessments are particularly significant and helpful in this

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context. MAP is a formative assessment system administered to students in kindergarten through grade nine 2-3
times each year. Because the MAP system is aligned to the South Carolina academic standards, district and school
personnel are able to identify each student’s strengths and improvement needs and to differentiate instruction
accordingly.

Curriculum for all Career/Technology Education (CTE) courses is based on state-defined competencies developed
and reviewed by members of the business community as well as teachers of the courses. The mission of CTE is to
prepare students for the seamless transition from high school to postsecondary education and a career through
completion of a solid academic core and either an academic, career/technology or blended concentration. CTE
offers students a variety of programs in a number of career clusters. The Daniel Morgan Technology Center serves
CTE students from Spartanburg County school districts Three and Seven under a collaborative agreement, and
offers learning opportunities for students at all academic performance levels.

The district offers a variety of programs to serve the needs of a diverse student population, including students who
are academically and artistically talented, students who need academic interventions, and students with special
needs.

• Academically talented students in grades 3-8 are served through the district’s ATLAS program. At the
elementary level, students who qualify for the program under state criteria receive instruction in a pull-out
resource model. Middle school students are served through accelerated/honors English language arts and
mathematics courses. ATLAS is designed to provide rigorous enrichment opportunities, often through completion
of special projects focused on the development of critical thinking skills, enhanced communication skills, and in-
depth research skills. Curriculum documents are aligned with state content standards as well as state standards for
gifted and talented education. The William and Mary language arts curriculum and the Project M3 math program
are integral to the district’s support of academically talented students. To differentiate instruction, teachers of
gifted/talented students align lessons to the higher levels of the DesCartes Continuum of Learning, based on
students’ MAP RIT scores.

• ATLAS Art and ATLAS Music are offered for artistically talented students. Fourth and fifth grade students are
taught 200 minutes each week by the art or music specialist in the school. Middle school students are served in a
year-long program to enhance their skills.

• At the high school level, gifted students are served through the district’s rigorous honors and Advanced
Placement (AP) course sequence. Broome High School currently offers eight AP courses. Eligibility for AP
courses is determined by PSAT/SAT and/or Explore/PLAN/ACT scores, prerequisite courses taken, and teacher
recommendation. In 2009-10, 63 students took a total of 93 AP examinations; 67 percent earned college credit by
achieving scores of 3 or higher.

• Through the Scholars Academy Program, a partnership of the seven Spartanburg County school districts and
University of South Carolina Upstate, high school students have the opportunity to take college courses during the
school day at no cost, while completing the remaining requirements of their high school program in their home
school.

For students who need academic intervention and assistance, the district offers several program options, among
which are the following:

• Title I provides consultative support, instructional resources, and support services to Title I schools, as
determined by a structured needs assessment. Funds are provided for equipment, instructional resources, and
consultant support to meet identified needs.


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• Summer school programs are designed to meet a variety of student needs.

• Extended day/after-school programs provide academic enrichment, remediation and homework assistance. All
struggling students/delayed learners have academic assistance plans, required by the district. Teachers meet with
parents regularly.

• The Victory Credential Program at Broome High School provides opportunities for students with special needs
to learn functional academic, personal, social, and occupational skills that prepare them for life-long independent
living, productive employment, and responsible citizenship.

• The Spartanburg County Alternative School provides alternative learning opportunities for students from all
seven Spartanburg County districts who are not successful in the regular classroom because of disciplinary issues.

• The Accelerated Learning Program (ALP), implemented in cooperation with the Daniel Morgan Technology
Center and Spartanburg School District Seven, enables students who have fallen behind to recover course work,
get back to grade level, and graduate with their class. Of the 75 Broome High School students enrolled in ALP in
2009-10, 25 graduated with their class; 28 others successfully returned to grade level status.

• The Academic Reinforcement Center (ARC), a computer lab housed at Broome High School, offers immediate
intervention for students who are experiencing difficulties in their academic core subjects. Students can recover
class time due to excessive absences; make up tests; work on assignments using Nova Net software; and prepare
for standardized assessments, such as SAT, ACT, HSAP, and End-of-Course examinations. Certified English,
mathematics, and science teachers staff the center.

• Students who go to attendance make-up labs receive high quality instruction while recovering seat time.

The district serves students in the least restrictive environment, according to need, in a full continuum of special
education programs, including general education with support services, self contained, homebound, and home-
based. Students who are determined eligible by the IEP team are provided the appropriate special education
extended school year services when school is not in session. For students determined eligible by a school-based
team, reasonable accommodations to support major life functions, including learning, are provided according to a
504 accommodation plan.

In accordance with state guidelines, three part-time ESOL (English to Speakers of Other Languages) teachers
support programmatically students whose first language is not English. In 2010-11, the district has enrolled 135
ESOL students, all of whom receive direct services from the district. The district publishes and distributes Spanish
versions of various documents to meet students’ needs and facilitate the involvement of Spanish-speaking
families in the community.

2. In what ways does the system promote and support the implementation of research-based instructional
strategies, innovations, and activities that facilitate achievement for all students?

As indicated in its strategic plan, the district highly values research-based, data driven, innovative processes and
practices. Major innovations currently being implemented are subsequently summarized.

• Curriculator, the district’s online curriculum guide and lesson planner, incorporates key unit standards clustered
by nine-week time periods, suggested instructional strategies, related assessment activities, exemplar lessons, the
State’s default curriculum (S3), and support documents by subject area.

• Over the past ten years, the district has implemented the key practices defined by the Southern Regional
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Education Board in its High Schools That Work (HSTW) and Making Middle Grades Work (MMGW) Programs.
The Daniel Morgan Technology Center has added the Technology Centers That Work (TCTW) network. The
network provides an effective, research-based framework for ensuring that curriculum, instructional strategies and
assessments are aligned and articulated to support student learning. The South Carolina Education and Economic
Development Act (EEDA) recommends and supports the use of these reform models.

• Because the research overwhelmingly demonstrates the importance of early literacy, the district allocates
funding for needs-based four-year-old programs at each elementary school and for the district’s Parents as
Teachers (PAT) Program. PAT also serves teen mothers with children birth to age five. Through the use of
relationship-based strategies, the PAT curriculum promotes a parent’s role in school readiness and the healthy
development of children. The PAT program director and four fully trained PAT staff members meet with teen
mothers regularly and conduct home visits to enrolled families twice each month. In 2010-11, 40 mothers are
participating in the program.

• The Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA) is a research?based assessment used to determine a young
child’s independent reading level. For primary-age children (grades K-2), DRA enables teachers to systematically
observe, record, and evaluate change in student reading performance; to set instructional goals specific to each
child; to match readers to appropriate books; and to differentiate instruction in LEAP (Language Enrichment
Acceleration Program). For upper elementary-age children, DRA helps teachers to identify struggling readers and
to track their progress on a regular basis.

• The Wilson Reading System supports reading instruction for special education students. Wilson Reading is a
research-based reading program for students in grades 2 through 12 who have difficulty with decoding and
spelling. Originally designed in the 1980s for adults with dyslexia, the program provides a complete 12-step
curriculum that supports struggling readers through an organized, sequential approach to reading instruction. Five
district teachers are nationally certified as Wilson Reading instructors.

• The district’s balanced literacy model combines whole language and phonics instruction through a variety of
research-proven strategies. The model integrates reading, vocabulary, writing, speaking, spelling, and grammar.

• Math Out of the Box (MOOTB) is in place at the elementary level. Developed in the College of Engineering
and Science at Clemson University, program inquiry-based modules emphasize both content and process
standards and reflect research-based instructional practice. The Math Out of the Box team offers a companion
professional development program for teachers.

• Project Lead the Way (PLTW), a multi-dimensional, rigorous, and innovative science, technology, engineering
and math (STEM) curriculum, emphasizes critical thinking, creativity, innovation, and real-world problem
solving. The hands-on, project-based program engages students on multiple levels and provides them with a
foundation for college and career success in STEM-related fields. Broome High School offers PLTW Introduction
to Engineering and Project GreenStem I and II. Broome is one of five sites in the state selected to pilot Project
GreenStem. Other PLTW components, such as digital electronics, are offered at the Daniel Morgan Technology
Center.

• Boys and Girls Club follows the Boys & Girls Clubs of America Youth Development Strategy. This strategy is
research-based and, even better, proven over Boys & Girls Clubs 100 year history to help kids succeed regardless
of their circumstances.

• Citizen Scholars is designed to aid Spartanburg County students who have exhibited academic potential and a
strong desire to further their education. To qualify, students must complete a rigorous seven-year program. During
that time, tutors and mentors provide guidance and help them focus on their academic goals.
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• Graphic organizers provide a common thinking process for students at all grade levels. The system consists of
seven specific graphic organizers to help students arrange information for writing and other assignments.

Among other innovative initiatives implemented in the district are the following:

• Writing is integrated into all areas of the curriculum at the elementary, middle and high school levels.

• State-approved science kits support a hands-on approach to earth, life, and physical science instruction at the
elementary level.

• A Freshman Academy provides academic, behavioral, and social support and guidance for ninth graders at
Broome High School. Unlike the 4 x 4 block schedule for all upper classmen, ninth graders’ schedules include
both year-long and semester-block classes.

• Technology-enriched classrooms support quality teaching and learning. Each school has at least one computer
lab and mobile computer cart; each classroom has four or five computers, and a Promethean Board that promotes
student engagement in the learning process. The ActivExpressions learner response system facilitates classroom
formative assessment.

• Outstanding programs in the visual and performing arts support integration of the arts into the curriculum;
students benefit from artist-in-residence programs, guest presenters, field trips, and other arts activities. Arts
offerings enhance the curriculum and include visual arts, band, and chorus.

• Virtual offerings and credit recovery options encourage students to stay in school.

• Service learning opportunities support character development and good citizenship.

• Academic competitions, such as Battle of Brains, Battle of the Books, science fairs, writing contests, and
spelling bees, encourage student engagement in learning.

The district promotes the implementation of research-based practices that facilitate achievement for all students
and enhance teacher effectiveness. In support of teachers and students, the district:

• Provides and supports Curriculator, an online curriculum guide and lesson planner (key unit standards clustered
by nine-week time periods, suggested instructional strategies, related assessment activities, exemplar lessons, the
State’s default curriculum (S3), and support documents by subject area)

• Analyzes data from MAP, PASS, HSAP and EOCEP

• Provides on-going professional development district-wide, and focused professional development to individual
schools, based on identified need

• Offers academic assistance programs for struggling students

• Encourages professional learning teams

• Provides standards-based summer school programs

• Offers credit recovery opportunities for high school students
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• Provides programs to promote and support early childhood development

• Provides guidance and support in the effective use of literacy resources and strategies, science kits, Math Out Of
The Box (MOOTB), math manipulatives, and technology resources

All teachers use a lesson plan format that includes all lesson components proven by research to be effective in
promoting student achievement. Although the structure of the lesson plan template differs by level, lesson plans
include the unit’s essential/focus question, lesson goals/objectives, the instructional activities to be used, and the
assessment activity through which student understanding and progress will be measured. To promote rigor,
lessons focus on the level of Bloom’s revised taxonomy, and the appropriate verbs, at which the lesson standards
are written.

3. What processes are implemented to ensure that all staff members are well-prepared to support and
implement the district's expectations for student learning?

The district provides professional development for teachers, instructional coaches, and other staff to support the
teaching/learning process. Professional development opportunities are aligned with district strategic plan
initiatives. Areas of recent district focus include balanced literacy at the elementary level, writing across the
curriculum, curriculum alignment, instructional differentiation, technology integration, the revised Bloom’s
taxonomy, and the study and analysis of student achievement data.

Because the district gives priority to protecting instructional time, professional development is often scheduled
during common planning time, before or after school, on designated professional development days, during the
summer, or through webinars to avoid disrupting the instructional process. Professional development is delivered
and practiced in a variety of ways, including direct instruction, coaching, mentoring, professional conversations
about student achievement and student work, and technical assistance. Principals and teachers serve as
leaders/facilitators for district and school professional development; district instructional coaches for literacy,
mathematics, science, and technology support teachers in a variety of ways, depending on need. In collaboration
with classroom teachers, district staff review, revise, and update curriculum documents annually. Professional
libraries are located at the district level and in each school.

All teachers who are employed under annual and continuing contracts are evaluated and assisted, using the state-
defined goals-based education (GBE) process and the ADEPT/SAFE-T system performance dimensions. The
process ensures that teachers meet the required expectations for teaching and serves as the basis for individual
professional development decisions. A comprehensive teacher induction program supports teachers new to the
profession through a year-long system of mentoring, study, and varied support activities; participants earn three
graduate credit hours through Converse College.

District and school staff benefit from the district’s membership in the Upstate Schools Consortium, a
collaboration of 12 upstate districts and Furman University. The Consortium sponsors seminars and conferences
with nationally known educators, such as Mike Schmoker, nationally renowned educator and author of Results
Now. State PDSI funds support teachers’ attendance at state and national professional conferences.

Through a partnership with Converse College, the district offers comprehensive programs for aspiring principals
and assistant principals. The programs are based on professional standards developed by the Interstate School
Leaders Consortium (ISLLC) and focus on areas such as vision, instructional leadership, school and community
partnerships, ethics, and communications.

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Comprehensive technology training is available for district and school staff. Current efforts include a focus on
PowerSchool, the state’s new student information system, and PowerTeacher, an electronic grade book system.
Both systems are used by appropriate district and school personnel to access student grades, attendance data,
health data, and general student information.

4. How does the system ensure that all students and staff have access to comprehensive information,
instructional technology, and media services?

The district promotes a supportive climate for student learning by communicating extensively with stakeholders
on a regular basis.

• Information is available to school staff, parents, and the community-at-large through district and school
websites; district, school, and teacher newsletters, disseminated on a regular basis; news releases to local media,
the student/parent handbook, and the district’s personnel handbook.

• K-5 teachers regularly send home folders of student work, which include graded assignments and other
announcements for parents. Middle school teachers send home bi-monthly progress reports, and all teachers send
home interim grade reports at the middle of each nine-week grading period. Additionally, parents of students in
grades 3-12 can securely access their child’s grades and attendance information on-line through PowerSchool.

• Designated contacts at each school meet with district staff to receive or discuss information, as necessary.

• AlertNow, an electronic messaging system, enables district and school personnel to transmit messages widely to
parents and others via telephone.

• Progress reports/report cards routinely inform parents of students’ progress.

• Parents can access teacher websites through e-Chalk to obtain information about homework, classroom news,
and upcoming school events.

• The high school course guide, programs of study document, and college guide include information about
program clusters, career paths, and course selection; promotion policies; state and district grading scales; and the
college selection and application process.

Instructional technology, as outlined in the district’s technology plan, is available throughout the district to
promote engaging classroom instruction. Computer labs and mobile laptop carts are in place in all schools.
Promethean Boards, digital cameras, and ActivExpressions (electronic personal response systems) are currently
used in classrooms across the district. Each classroom has three–five computers for individual student work.
Video streaming, a digital video-on-demand service, may be accessed by students and teachers at school or at
home. The district’s acceptable use policy defines the process for monitoring student use of technology.

The media specialist in each school assists teachers to implement available technology effectively. All teachers
are required to demonstrate technology proficiency every five years by completing at least 3 graduate hours in
technology integration instruction or its equivalent. Students must demonstrate technology proficiency as a
requirement for a high school diploma.

Comprehensive media services are available at all schools. Media specialists work collaboratively with classroom
teachers to provide standards-based classes in the use of media center resources, such as the internet, PowerPoint,
and Photo Story.

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Destiny is used state-wide for textbook and media center management. District and school textbook coordinators
have access to the textbook management component of the system, while media specialists, school administrators,
teachers, students, and parents can access media center information.


Overall Assessment:

Operational: The school system implements a curriculum based on clear and measurable expectations for student
learning that provides opportunities for all students to acquire requisite knowledge, skills, and attitudes. The
system demonstrates evidence of alignment between the curriculum and instructional practices with systematic
implementation across the system. Teachers use proven instructional practices that actively engage students in the
learning process. Teachers provide frequent opportunities for students to apply their knowledge and skills to real
world situations. Teachers give students regular feedback to improve their performance.




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            Standard 4. Documenting & Using Results

STANDARD: The system enacts a comprehensive assessment system that monitors and documents performance
and uses these results to improve student performance and system effectiveness.

Impact Statement: A school system is successful in meeting this standard when it uses a comprehensive
assessment system based on clearly-defined performance measures. The assessment system is used to assess
student performance on expectations for student learning, identify gaps between expectations for student learning
and student performance, evaluate the effectiveness of curriculum and instruction, and determine interventions to
improve student performance. The assessment system yields timely and accurate information that is meaningful
and useful to system and school leaders, teachers, and other stakeholders in understanding student performance,
system and school effectiveness, and the results of improvement efforts.

Indicators Rubric: Please indicate the degree to which the noted practices/processes are in place in the school
system. The responses to the rubric should help the school system identify areas of strength and opportunities for
improvement as well as guide and inform the school system's responses to the focus questions.

Indicators Evidence: For each Indicator, click the (Add Evidence) link to provide examples of evidence that
support the rubric response.

Definitions of Indicators Rubric:

           Not Evident                 Little or no evidence exists
           Emerging                    Evidence indicates early or preliminary stages of
                                       implementation of practice
           Operational                 Evidence indicates practices and procedures are actively
                                       implemented
           Highly Functional           Evidence indicates practices and procedures are fully
                                       integrated and effectively and consistently implemented



INDICATORS: In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

4.1 Establishes and implements a comprehensive assessment system, aligned with the system's expectations
for student learning, that yields information which is reliable, valid, and bias free :
Operational

Evidence Provided:
All stakeholders are knowledgeable about behavioral standards

All stakeholders are knowledgeable about grading and appeals

All stakeholders are knowledgeable about learning expectations and targets for student performance


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Assessment system that records multiple assessments

Assessment system that safeguards validity, confidentiality, identification

Calendar of assessment activities

Database that records graduation, completion, GPA, placement, retention rates

Dedicated unit/staff for assessment and data reporting

District staff use data to inform policies and practice

Online assessment system

Policies outline administration of multiple assessments and their purpose

Policies that outline targets for behavioral standards: attendance, discipline

Policies that outline targets for student performance and are aligned to state/national standards

Record of multiple assessments administered, including program-specific required assessments

Special database for career preparation, special education, bilingual education programs

Staff affirm the use of multiple measures for student performance

Stakeholders are familiar with the administration and purpose of multiple assessments

Stakeholders are knowledgeable about the assessment schedule

Stakeholders implement multiple assessment system

Student/Staff Handbook that outlines grading scales, syllabus criteria, and appeal process

The development and administration of multiple assessments consider limited-language learners, students with
disabilities, and multiple learning styles

Other: District Strategic Plan; School Improvement Plans; Teacher Data Notebooks; NWEA Teacher Reports;
TestView Documents; Faculty Meeting Agendas/Minutes

4.2 Ensures that student assessment data are used to make decisions for continuous improvement of
teaching and learning:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes from staff meetings indicate use of data to drive instructional planning discussions

Agendas, minutes from staff meetings indicate utilization of data systems

Criteria for evaluation of staff performance include the use of data for instructional planning
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Criteria for feedback on performance

Data graphs, charts display student performance expectations

District staff affirm their understanding of how data are used to evaluate their effectiveness

District staff are knowledgeable about how to use student performance data for the purpose of instructional
planning

District staff demonstrate the use of data when planning guidelines for instruction, through vertical and horizontal
articulation

District staff meet regularly to discuss student work

District staff utilize assessment data for the purpose of instructional and program planning

Examples of student work are prominently displayed

Staff Handbook outlines expectations about the use of student performance data for instructional planning

Student performance data reports, charts, graphs indicate system-wide use of data for instructional planning

Students affirm knowledge about their learning expectations

Other: Teacher Data Notebooks; NWEA School and Teacher Documents; PowerSchool Training Schedule;
Course Guide; Course Advisement Documents

4.3 Conducts a systematic analysis of instructional and organizational effectiveness, including support
systems, and uses the results to improve student and system performance:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Data from community/business

Database that records graduation, post-graduate engagement

District staff utilize business and community data to guide program planning

District staff utilize perception data from surveys to guide program planning

Stakeholders affirm their familiarity with student performance and organizational effectiveness

Stakeholders affirm their involvement in meetings in which the topic of student performance and organizational
effectiveness were highlighted

Other: District Strategic Plan; School Improvement Plans; Meeting Agendas/Minutes (Board, Cabinet, Principals,
Faculties, SICs); Teacher Certification, Retention, and Evaluation data; Title 1 Parent Contract; Parent Conference
and Workshop sign-in sheets; Approved District Budget; Data from state surveys indicate wide scale use of data
to analyze instructional and organizational effectiveness
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4.4 Provides a system of communication which uses a variety of methods to report student performance
and system effectiveness to all stakeholders:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes from meetings where student performance and school effectiveness were highlighted

Criteria that establishes student performance data as a component of parent-teacher conferences

District staff affirm the use of various communication methods to report student performance

Newsletters demonstrate communication of student performance and school effectiveness

Stakeholders affirm the use of various communication methods to report student performance

Other:

Other: District/School Reports Cards; Parent Contact Documentation

4.5 Uses comparison and trend data from comparable school systems to evaluate student performance and
system effectiveness:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agenda, minutes of meetings in which comparative data were highlighted

District staff affirm their involvement in meetings in which comparative data were highlighted

Reports that outline comparable data analysis - across programs

Reports that outline comparable data analysis - across schools, districts, states, nationally

4.6 Demonstrates verifiable growth in student performance that is supported by multiple sources of
evidence:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Data reports disaggregate student performance growth

Data reports include behavioral and environmental data

Data reports utilize identified growth model that is valid, reliable, and psychometrically appropriate

Data reports verify growth in student performance

District staff can identify reasons why student performance has increased/decreased

District staff can identify strategies for increasing student performance

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Stakeholders can speak to and support the growth data

4.7 Maintains a secure, accurate, and complete student record system in accordance with state and federal
regulations:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District staff affirm their comfort with the level of data accuracy and security

Policies that outline the conditions for safeguarding and transferring transcripts

Policies that safeguard accuracy and security of all data

Reports that satisfy local, state, and national requirements

Stakeholders are knowledgeable about the conditions under which transcripts are safeguarded and transferred

Stakeholders indicate that they have seen reports that satisfy local, state, and national requirements

Focus Questions:

1. How is the assessment system currently used throughout the school system and its schools to guide analysis
of changes in student performance?

Spartanburg School District Three uses a variety of summative and formative assessments to measure and analyze
changes in student performance. State-mandated assessments include:

• Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) in grades three through eight, which replaced the Palmetto
Achievement Challenge Test (PACT) in 2008-2009

• High School Assessment Program (HSAP) exit exam in English language arts and mathematics, which students
take for the first time in grade 10

• End of Course Examination Program (EOCEP) in selected high school subjects, currently Algebra I, English I,
Physical Science, Biology and United States History and Constitution

• Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS) and the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT), administered in grade two for
gifted/talented program identification

In recent years, the district has expanded its assessment program to examine student learning at more regular
intervals through the use of Measures of Academic Progress (MAP). MAP, an online, formative assessment
system developed by the Northwest Evaluation Association, is administered to students in kindergarten through
grade ten. Primary MAP, administered in kindergarten and first grade, focuses on mathematics. In grades two
through ten, MAP is given in reading and mathematics three times a year (fall, winter, spring) to measure student
growth and to identify specific learning strengths and weaknesses. A science test is included in the fall and spring
administrations. Because the system is aligned to the South Carolina academic standards, district and school
personnel are able to identify each student’s individual strengths and areas in need of improvement and to
differentiate instruction accordingly. MAP data are used to establish school, class, and individual student growth
goals; to determine district, school, grade level, and classroom performance trends; and to identify students for the

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district’s gifted/talented and academic assistance programs. At the high school level, students qualify for
placement in the Academic Reinforcement Center (ARC) based on MAP, HSAP, and teacher assessment data.

The SAT and ACT are administered to some students at the high school level. Data are used to assess students’
potential for success during the first year of post-secondary education, and to benchmark the performance of
district students against that of students in other districts, across the state, and throughout the nation.

The state funds PLAN or PSAT for all tenth graders. Because the PLAN is a powerful predictor of success on the
ACT and focuses attention on both career preparation and improving academic achievement, the district funds it
in addition to PSAT. The district also administers EXPLORE, the eighth grade assessment aligned with PLAN
and ACT. Guidance counselors and other school staff use resulting data to advise students on further coursework
and academic preparation.

The state funds PSAT for tenth graders, and the district funds PSAT for ninth graders wishing to take it. By taking
PSAT, students have firsthand practice for the SAT and the opportunity to qualify for a National Merit
scholarship.

The district offers a rigorous honors and Advanced Placement (AP) course sequence. Eligibility for AP courses is
determined by PSAT/SAT and/or PLAN/ACT scores, past courses taken, and teacher recommendation. Broome
High School currently offers eight AP courses. In 2009-10, 63 students took a total of 93 AP examinations; 67
percent earned college credit by achieving scores of 3 or higher.

Assessments used to measure early childhood progress include the Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA)
and Developmental Indicators for the Assessment of Learning (DIAL-3).

• The Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA) is a research?based assessment used to determine a young
child’s independent reading level. For primary-age children (grades K-2), DRA enables teachers to systematically
observe, record, and evaluate change in student reading performance; to set instructional goals specific to each
child; to match readers to appropriate books; and to differentiate instruction in LEAP (Learning Acceleration and
Enrichment Program). For upper elementary-age children, DRA helps teachers to identify struggling readers and
to track their progress on a regular basis.

• Developmental Indicators for the Assessment of Learning (DIAL-3) data assist with student qualification and
placement in the district’s four-year-old kindergarten programs. Students with greatest demonstrated need are
given placement priority.
In grades 2-12, Lexile scores are used to determine a student’s independent reading level. Data guide student self-
selection of appropriate reading materials and the grouping of students for classroom activities, such as small
reading groups or literacy circles. Media Center books and other materials are coded to reflect Lexile ranges.

The English Language Development Assessment (ELDA) is administered to students whose first language is not
English, as a requirement of the federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. ELDA consists of four tests designed
to measure academic and social language proficiency in the domains of speaking, listening, reading, and writing.
Of the 94 ESOL students enrolled in the district, all are receiving direct services from the district in 2010-11.

In addition to formal, written assessments, the district uses rubrics-based assessment, teacher observation, and
student self-assessment to monitor student performance and growth.

A data-driven approach to instructional planning is a priority at both the district and school levels. Several schools
emphasize data-driven processes through data notebooks or other structures that provide a vehicle for
professional, data-based conversations about student learning among school faculties. Student work samples are
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often the focus of school and grade-specific teacher discussions.

2. What are you doing to ensure that assessment results are timely, relevant, and communicated in a way that
can be used by the system, its schools, and stakeholders to aid the performance of individual students?

As outcomes of various assessments become available, they are disseminated in a timely manner, taking care not
to breach any embargoes that may be in effect. Analyses highlighting the results are posted on the district’s
website and distributed to local media. Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) data and South Carolina School Report
Card information are communicated in a similar manner and made available to all parents and community
members. Comprehensive reports are provided to the Board of Trustees prior to the release of results to the public.

So that teachers can most effectively use assessment data for instructional planning, the district assures that the
data are available to schools, in both summary and disaggregated forms, as quickly as possible after they are
received. For example, Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) allows students to determine their scores
immediately after completing the test. Detailed, individual student and teacher reports are available within 24
hours, and district reports are available within two weeks after the administration window closes. Using resulting
data and the DesCartes Continuum of Learning, teachers differentiate instruction for individual or groups of
students. Des Cartes, a component of the NWEA assessment system, matches MAP RIT scores with specific skills
or groups of skills on the learning continuum.

The district has implemented TestView, an electronic data warehouse that allows district and school
administrators, teachers, and guidance counselors to access student achievement information, including grades
and assessment scores, from their desktops. Teachers have access to information related only to their current
students. TestView is updated immediately as new data are received.

Other efforts to communicate and use assessment results to aid individual student performance include the
following:

• Through the Parent Portal, a component of PowerSchool, parents of children in grades 3-12 can securely access
assessment data for their child/children at any time.

• Progress reports/report cards routinely inform parents of students’ progress.

• Parent/teacher conferences at the end of the first and third quarters include a review of data related to the
student’s performance on various achievement measures. Parent conferences with students who are failing or in
danger of failing are scheduled as needed. The district reminds parents of upcoming parent conferences through
AlertNow, the telephone “call out” system.

• IEP meetings include a review of relevant student assessment results; the data guide decisions about program
modifications and placement.

• School faculties engage in professional conversations that are data-based and that inform and guide instructional
planning.

• Professional development opportunities are suggested on the basis of student and/or teacher performance data.

• Students are made aware of their own achievement data to encourage goal-setting and improved performance.

• As appropriate, School Report Card information and other assessment data are shared with SIC and PTO
members at their monthly meetings at respective schools. Achievement data guide the annual SIC goal-setting
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process at each school.

• The district’s Annual Report to the Community, disseminated to both internal and external stakeholders,
includes assessment data summaries and pertinent performance information.

3. How are data used to understand and improve overall effectiveness of the school system and its schools?

Spartanburg School District Three systemically provides data to all stakeholders, using a variety of methods, in an
effort to provide evidence of the overall effectiveness of the district and individual schools. In addition to student
achievement data resulting from multiple measures, the district analyzes data related to non-achievement variables
of interest, such as student and teacher attendance, student discipline, and drop-outs. The Board of Trustees
regularly reviews and evaluates achievement data from a variety of sources. Other data of interest include
graduation rates, Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) summaries; outcomes of the Education Oversight Committee
Report Card Survey; School Report Card information; scholarship awards, and first-year college performance of
prior-year seniors.

The district maintains a comprehensive profile of the system, the students, and the community. Available at both
the district and school levels, data are maintained electronically through multiple systems, among which are the
following:

• PowerSchool, a state-wide student information system, and PowerTeacher, an electronic grade book system, are
used by appropriate district and school personnel to access student grades, attendance data, health data, and
general student information.

• TestView is an electronic warehouse for student achievement data that is available to district and school
administrators, teachers, and guidance counselors. Teachers have access to information related only to their
current students.

• Northwest Evaluation Association website provides easy access for teachers to students’ scores and related
information from Measures of Academic Progress (MAP). Teachers have access to information related only to
their current students.

• Excent, a state-wide system related specifically to special education, is maintained by the Department of Special
Services at the South Carolina Department of Education. The system can be accessed by state and local special
education personnel.

• Destiny is used state-wide for textbook and media center management. District and school textbook
coordinators have access to the textbook management component of the system, while media specialists, school
administrators, teachers, students and parents can access media center information.

• CSI, a financial management and accounting system, supports payroll processing, accounts payable, capital
asset tracking, budget building and tracking, and employee benefits management.

• MealTrakker is used to manage Food Service funds.

• School Dude enables the district to monitor and manage maintenance requests and to respond to the requests in
a timely and appropriate manner.

• Alert Now broadcasts information to stakeholders by phone regarding district/school emergencies, schedule
changes, and upcoming events.
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• Time Clock tracks the hours worked by all non-certified personnel.

• E-Chalk enables district and school staff to share school and class information, including homework
assignments, class photos, and links to helpful websites that support learning.
Electronic reports are provided to schools and administrators on district and school servers, and data are published
on the district’s website. Information is shared with board members, the superintendent’s cabinet, principals,
school staff, parents, and the public.

Student performance data are used to make comparisons to schools and districts in South Carolina that are similar
demographically to Spartanburg School District Three. These comparisons include results of PASS, HSAP, SAT,
ACT, and Advanced Placement assessments. Disaggregated data provide information specific to gender, ethnicity,
LEP status, disability status, economic status as measured by free and reduced lunch participation, and other
demographic categories that can help target certain needs within specific populations. Formative assessment
results from MAP are widely disseminated, analyzed, and used to support improved student achievement.

Accountability data included on district and school report cards and AYP reports help stakeholders assess district
effectiveness. Data are disseminated widely and posted on the district’s website. District and school staff and
School Improvement Councils study data resulting from multiple sources in order to identify strengths and areas
in need of improvement. The district and individual schools develop plans to address identified barriers to
effective instruction.

4. How are staff members across the system and its schools trained to understand and use data to impact
teaching and learning in the classroom?

The district actively prepares principals, teachers and other district and school staff to understand and use data to
support instructional planning and delivery through a variety of ongoing professional development priorities, such
as:

• Interpreting and effectively using student assessment data to inform instruction

• Using the data warehouse and other electronic tools available to district and school personnel, such as
PowerSchool, PowerTeacher, and TestView, to support data analysis and instructional planning

• Understanding AYP and the state report card system

• Using MAP data and the DesCartes Learning Continuum to effectively differentiate instruction

Other activities focused on understanding and effectively using data in the classroom include the following:

• District and school staff attend various national and state conferences each year, including the NWEA and
SREB national conferences; state and regional SAT/ACT workshops; the state formative assessment conference;
South Carolina Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development (SC-ASCD) fall and spring conferences;
and the South Carolina Association of School Administrators (SCASA) Summer Leadership Conference.

• School and district staff collaboratively study and discuss data from a variety of sources on an ongoing basis.

• The effective interpretation and use of data is frequently the focus of school faculty meetings, school study
groups, and principals’ conferences with individual teachers.

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Overall Assessment:

Operational: The school system uses a comprehensive assessment system based on clearly defined performance
measures that yield valid and reliable results. The assessment system is used to assess student performance on
expectations for student learning, evaluate the effectiveness of curriculum and instruction, and determine
interventions to improve student performance. The assessment system yields timely and accurate information that
is meaningful and useful to system/school leaders, teachers, and other stakeholders in understanding student
performance, school and system effectiveness, and the results of improvement efforts.




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             Standard 5. Resource & Support Systems

STANDARD: The system has the resources and services necessary to support its vision and purpose and to
ensure achievement for all students.

Impact Statement: A system is successful in meeting this standard when it has sufficient human, material, and
fiscal resources to implement a curriculum that: enables students to achieve expectations for student learning,
meets special needs, and complies with applicable regulations. The system employs and allocates staff well-
qualified for their assignments. The system provides ongoing learning opportunities for all staff to improve their
effectiveness. The system ensures compliance with applicable local, state, and federal regulations.

Indicators Rubric: Please indicate the degree to which the noted practices/processes are in place in the school
system. The responses to the rubric should help the school system identify areas of strength and opportunities for
improvement as well as guide and inform the school system's responses to the focus questions.

Indicators Evidence: For each Indicator, click the (Add Evidence) link to provide examples of evidence that
support the rubric response.

Definitions of Indicators Rubric:

            Not Evident                 Little or no evidence exists
            Emerging                    Evidence indicates early or preliminary stages of
                                        implementation of practice
            Operational                 Evidence indicates practices and procedures are actively
                                        implemented
            Highly Functional           Evidence indicates practices and procedures are fully
                                        integrated and effectively and consistently implemented



INDICATORS: Human Resources. In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

5.1 Establishes and implements processes to recruit, employ, retain, and mentor qualified professional and
support staff to fulfill assigned roles and responsibilities:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes, decisions for district and school level IEP meetings

Appropriate space is provided for special need support programs

District staff can affirm that special needs students receive needed support

IEP: Individualized Education Plans


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Native language usage is evident for the purpose of supporting learning

Personnel policies ensuring appropriate hiring practices

Personnel policies ensuring certification, licensure, evaluation, training

Professional learning opportunities

Program descriptions: Special Needs Populations

Schedules: District, School, Extra-Curricular; Transportation

Staff Handbooks

Staff schedules and assignments

Student Handbook

Other: District Strategic Plan

5.2 Establishes and implements a process to assign professional and support staff based on system needs
and staff qualifications as may be required by federal and state law and regulations (i.e., professional
preparation, ability, knowledge, and experience):
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Personnel policies ensuring appropriate placement

Personnel policies ensuring certification, licensure, evaluation, training

Policies regarding NCLB highly qualified teachers

Professional learning opportunities

Staff can affirm that they are teaching in their major area of study

Staff Handbook

Staff schedules and assignments

Staffing of both administrative and teaching positions is appropriate and adequate

Other: District Strategic Plan; District Title I Plan; SDE Accreditation Reports

5.3 Establishes and implements a process to design, evaluate, and improve professional development and
ensures participation by all faculty and staff:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Budget demonstrates appropriate allocation for PD
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Calendar, agenda, summaries of PD opportunities

District monitoring of professional development implementation

District staff are actively engaged in discussions that have resulted from their professional development
experience

District staff can affirm their involvement in professional learning opportunities

Evaluation of PD data

Personnel policies that stipulate PD requirements

Professional development plan

Staff are aware of the requirements for continuous learning

Staff implement effective strategies based on their professional development experience

Other: District Strategic Plan; School Improvement Plans; District Budget

5.4 Ensures that staff are sufficient in number to meet the vision and purpose of the school system and to
meet federal and state law and regulations, if applicable:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Budget demonstrates appropriate allocation for staffing

Class size indicates appropriate and effective support of student learning

Master schedule

Personnel policies and practices

Policies regarding NCLB highly qualified teachers

Other: Board Meeting Agendas/Minutes; District/School Report Cards; Student Registration Materials; Course
Catalog

INDICATORS: Financial Resources. In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

5.5 Engages in long-range budgetary planning and annually budgets sufficient resources to support its
educational programs and to implement its plans for improvement:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Annual budget - current, forecasted, fund-equity

Facilities plan - current, future
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Facilities protection documentation: insurance, amortization

Fiscal policies: use of all funding, including donations, reserves, discretionary

Infrastructure plans: short and long range

Practices that support appropriate use of allocated funds

Purchasing/replacement policies: adherence to EEO

School-level budgets

Space is adequate and appropriate to support student learning

State and Federal program budgets for targeted support

Other: District Technology Plan

5.6 Ensures that all financial transactions are safeguarded through proper budgetary procedures and
audited accounting measures:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
Audit reports

Fiscal protection plans: insurance

Organizational oversight of fiscal authority

Payroll and purchasing policies and processes

Practices that support appropriate use of fiscal resources

Refund policies

Secure management of all fiscal processes

INDICATORS: Physical Resources. In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

5.7 Maintains sites, facilities, services, and equipment to provide a safe, orderly, and healthy environment:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
All district-wide facilities are properly maintained

Calendar of safety drills: fire, tornado, emergency crisis

Curriculum includes attention to cleanliness and safety

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                                                                         Spartanburg County School District #3


District staff are involved in developing and implementing safety policies

District support staff are knowledgeable about safety policies

District-wide environment is clean and safe

Facilities maintenance reports and plans

HAZMAT (hazardous materials): policies and training

Policies and processes regarding safety

Policies and processes related to student/staff injury

Policies regarding dispensing prescription medications

Stakeholder survey data supporting safety

State and Federal regulations regarding special program safety requirements

Other: District employs School Resource Officers

Other: School Dude Work Order System

5.8 Establishes and implements written security and crisis management plans with appropriate training for
stakeholders:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Crisis intervention committee

Crisis intervention plan

District staff and students are knowledgeable about emergency procedures

District staff are involved in the crisis intervention team

Emergency procedures

Health support staff are available

Secure record system

Staff Handbook

Student Handbook

Wellness policy


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Other: Annual Safety Meeting Agendas/Minutes; School Safety Drill Logs; School/Bus Security Procedures

5.9 Implements processes and plans for maintaining and improving sites, facilities, and equipment:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Appropriate district staff affirm their knowledge of the plan for physical asset mainenance and replacement

Physical assets plan: short-term and long-range

Policies and procedures for maintaining and improving physical assets: site facilities, infrastructure, equipment,
etc.

Other: General Fund Maintenance Budgets

5.10 Provides technology infrastructure and equipment that is up-to-date and sufficient to accomplish the
system's goals:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District staff are knowledgeable about the short and long range plans for maintenance and replacement of
technology infrastructure

Policies and procedures for maintaining and improving technology infrastructure: hardward and software

Policies and procedures regarding appropriate internet access

Policies and procedures regarding the purchase of technology tools

Stakeholders are knowledgeable about policies regarding appropriate internet access

Other: Technology Training Materials/Documents

INDICATORS: Support Systems. In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

5.11 Provides and coordinates support services that meet the health, counseling, nutrition, safety, co-
curricular, transportation, and special learning needs of all students:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Advisory plan and program

Alternative Education Program

District monitors instruction for special needs inclusion

District provides guidelines for classroom instruction that demonstrates variety of instructional methodologies to
support all students

IEP: committee, minutes, calendar, agenda, sign-in sheets
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Individualized Development Plans

Master schedules demonstrating support for special needs

Policies and procedures that are ADA and IDEA compliant

Policies regarding use of languages other than English for district communication

Professional development calendar and topics

Special Needs Department/Committee

Staff affirm their use of instructional strategies that support special needs inclusion

Staffing of Counseling and Guidance programs

Stakeholder survey data supporting special needs programs

Stakeholders affirm their support for the district's special needs programs

Student referral policies and practices

Student referral process and procedures

Students and staff affirm their understanding of special needs populations

Teacher certification, licensure, etc. supporting special needs

Translated materials demonstrate communication to special needs population

Other: School Health Records; Health Screening Schedules; Psychological Services Logs

5.12 Provides student support services coordinated with the school, home, and community:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Career Preparation Department/Committee

Community based programs

Curriculum for Career Preparation

District staff affirm that they receive regular training opportunities to support student behavior

District staff are knowledgeable in all aspects of appropriate social/emotional support for student learning
behavior

Enrollment data - current status, trends

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                                                                          Spartanburg County School District #3


Guidance and Counseling Department/Committee

Job Placement program

Master schedule indicates availability of career preparation

Orientation to Career Preparation programs

Professional development: calendar, topics

Staff assigned to career preparation programs

Stakeholders are supportive of community-based programs to support student engagement

Students are enrolled in career preparation

Students are knowledgeable about career planning programs

Other: AlertNow Logs; Co-Curricular Offerings/Schedules; Parent/Teacher Conference Logs; Attendance Hearing
Records; Individual Graduation Plan Development Schedules

Focus Questions:

1. What is the school system's process for recruitment, induction, placement, development, evaluation, and
retention of qualified professional and support staff across the system and its schools?

The district’s strategic plan establishes as a priority the recruitment and retention of quality teachers,
administrators, and support personnel. In 2010-11, the district employs 452 staff, 272 of whom are certified
personnel. Of all classes taught, 99.4% are staffed by instructors who are “highly qualified” under guidelines of
No Child Left Behind.

The district aggressively recruits highly qualified teachers through university job fairs, partnerships with higher
education institutions, personal contacts, various local initiatives, and word of mouth. The Center for Educator
Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement (CERRA), located at Winthrop University in upstate South Carolina,
and SchoolRecruiter, the district’s online software system, are vital components of the district’s recruiting
efforts. Because the district’s approach to recruiting and hiring includes collaborative practices, district and
school staff participate in recruitment events and serve on interview panels for district and school positions.
Assuring staff diversity is among the district’s recruiting emphases.

Many students who are preparing at local colleges and universities to enter the teaching profession do their
internships in District Three schools. School administrators are able to observe each intern’s performance and to
recruit those with greatest potential. Additionally, many certified teachers who are unable to find permanent
teaching positions because of the current economic climate are working as substitutes, affording administrators
opportunities to observe their work prior to hiring them on a permanent basis.

Notices of employment opportunities are posted on the district’s website and advertised in local newspapers,
professional journals, and other media. In 2009-10, district recruitment efforts included a recruiting event that
allowed interactions with six colleges and universities in South Carolina.


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The Program of Alternative Certification for Educators (PACE) was established to enable degreed individuals,
who otherwise do not meet certification requirements, to gain employment in the public schools in a PACE-
approved subject area teaching position. The district currently has five PACE teachers participating in the
program. DMTC utilizes the “Direct” program for alternate certification of trades people.

Staff are assigned to schools in accordance with the goals/priorities established in the district strategic plan, as
well as federal and state laws and regulations. Current allocation ratios at the elementary level are 25:1 for
kindergarten; 21:1 for grade one; 22:1 for grade two; 23:1 for grade three; and 25:1 for grades four and five.
Actual average ratios for the current school year are 17:1 for kindergarten; 19:1 for grades one through three; and
20:1 for grades four and five. Staff are assigned to middle and high schools based on enrollment and the school’s
unique needs. District policy provides for the involuntary transfer of teachers, if necessary to meet student needs.
Some teachers are assigned to serve more than one school.

To demonstrate its commitment to the support and retention of its employees, the district:

• Provides competitive salary schedules for all employee categories; teacher salaries, in the top quartile of teacher
salaries across the state, are at a level 13% above the state’s salary schedule for teachers

• Offers monetary incentives for teachers pursuing certification by the National Board of Professional Teaching
Standards

• Allocates sufficient teachers to accommodate small class sizes

• Supports new teachers through a comprehensive induction program that includes a Summer Teaching and
Learning Institute, monthly mentoring meetings, and on-site coaching support; induction teachers receive three
hours graduate credit through Converse College

• Offers partial tuition reimbursement for teachers working toward advanced degrees

• Recognizes employees in a variety of ways.

      Teacher Appreciation Week recognizes teachers’ dedication and commitment to students and families

      District and school Teachers-of-the-Year are chosen and celebrated each year

      Bus drivers earn a monetary bonus for good attendance, driving and bus upkeep

      Employees who have distinguished themselves in some way are recognized at monthly board meetings
      during the Good News section with plaques and certificates.

      The district recognizes teachers for their students’ achievement at the August convocation by awarding
      certificates with a monetary value which they can use for classroom materials.

      Employees may enroll their children in the school in which they work, even though they may not live
      within the school’s defined attendance zone or the district

      A weekly Friday-Gram celebrates the week’s accomplishments

      A daily district-wide e-mail includes good wishes for employees celebrating a birthday


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                                                                            Spartanburg County School District #3

      A district “sick bank”, governed by clear policy guidelines, supports ill employees who have exhausted
      their sick days

      Unused annual leave days are reimbursed at retirement in accordance with Board policy

The district provides comprehensive professional development opportunities for employees. Because the district
gives priority to protecting instructional time, professional development is often scheduled during common
planning time, before or after school, on designated professional development days, during the summer, or
through webinars to avoid disrupting the instructional process. Growth and development opportunities for
professional staff include:

• On-going district and school seminars and workshops for teachers

• Support for staff attendance at local, regional, and national professional conferences

• An annual leadership workshop for district and school administrators

• Regularly scheduled meetings for district staff and semi- monthly meetings for principals to facilitate continued
leadership development

• A county-wide Potential Administrators’ Academy, offered in collaboration with Converse College, for
educators who aspire to administrative positions; participants, selected on the basis of clearly defined criteria, earn
graduate degrees in administration at district expense.

• Opportunities for teacher leadership include the following:

• Teachers serve as grade level/subject area lead teachers, as department chairs, and as members of the school’s
leadership team.

• Teachers are selected to serve as cooperating teachers for area college students who are completing student
teaching.

• Teachers serve as members of district committees for instruction, technology, and communications.

• Teachers served on standards teams in preparation for district accreditation.

• Teachers provide input to several district/school processes, including curriculum development, textbook
selection, policy development/implementation, and discipline procedures.

• Teachers serve as leaders/facilitators for district and school professional development; the district held its first
Summer Institute, facilitated by district teachers for district teachers in 2009. This was held again in the summer
of 2010.

• Teachers participate in recruitment events and serve on interview panels for district and school positions.

The superintendent’s annual evaluation is based on district priorities and goals for improved student achievement
established by the board and aligned with the district’s strategic plan. The Board determines, based on the data
presented by the superintendent for each respective goal, whether the goal will remain on the priority list for the
subsequent year. The superintendent meets regularly with district staff, school faculties, parents, students,
legislators, and community members to provide updates on district progress toward the goals.
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The district’s personnel evaluation processes are designed to support and facilitate professional growth and
improvement that promote enhanced student achievement. Principals, assistant principals, teachers and other
professional staff are formally evaluated every three years, using the appropriate state evaluation model.
Classified personnel are evaluated less formally on an ongoing basis.

2. How does the leadership ensure that the allocation of financial resources is supportive of the school system's
vision, programs, services, and its plans for continuous improvement?

A discussion of financial resources would be incomplete without reference to State Act 388, passed by the South
Carolina General Assembly in 2006. This act replaced residential property taxes in the state of South Carolina
with a one percent (1%) increase in the state sales tax. This replacement was dollar for dollar in its first year of
implementation, but the law has inadequate provisions to keep pace with the natural of growth in this tax base as
student population increases. Because school districts in South Carolina had heretofore obtained a large portion of
their operating funds through homeowner property taxes, Act 388 has severely restricted districts’ ability to
acquire adequate financial resources. The problem has been compounded by the downturn in the national
economy, resulting in a negative impact on the state’s ability to generate sales tax revenue. As a consequence,
FY2011 funding levels in South Carolina mirror those of 1995; per pupil state funding is at its lowest level in the
last 15 years. Over the past two years, Spartanburg School District Three has lost approximately $3,000,000 in
state revenue.

The severe reductions in state funding have forced districts to eliminate programs, increase class sizes, furlough
staff, and reduce faculty/staff positions at both the school and district levels. Under these circumstances,
Spartanburg School District Three has endeavored to allocate financial resources so as to preserve and support the
district’s mission.

The district strategic plan guides the allocation of all financial resources. 95.01% of the items included in the
district’s $22,642,782 General Fund Expenditures Budget have direct impact at the school level in the form of
funding for salaries, utilities, supplies, and maintenance.

The General Fund Budget is developed to reflect the district’s practice of always putting students first, in
accordance with parameters cited in the district strategic plan: “We will always make decisions in the best interest
of students”; and “We will always give priority to the preK-12 instructional program.” Accordingly, funding for
classroom staff, supplies, and instructional support is assured before funds are allocated for other items.

Human, material, and financial resources are allocated to schools equitably, based on allocation formulas.
Formulas are established to align to strategic plan goals and to comply with Board policy and federal and state
mandates. District guidelines specify maximum class sizes for all instructional levels. Technology funding is
budgeted and allocated equitably in accordance with the district’s technology plan. Capital improvement funds
are prioritized and budgeted according to the district’s capital improvement plan to support facility
improvements/maintenance; technology; and equipment. All allocation formulas are reviewed annually and
revised as appropriate.
The district offers competitive salary schedules for all employee categories, as well as a schedule of stipends for
athletics and co-curricular activities. The teacher salary schedule, identical for all Spartanburg County districts,
exceeds the state average by 13 percent.

Salary schedules for all certified staff are grounded in the teacher salary schedule. Administrator salaries are based
on education level, number of years experience, scope of responsibility, and level and size of school. The district
conducts periodic market analyses for administrative positions and other employee categories to assure that
district salary schedules are competitive. Adjustments are made as warranted.
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Respective aspects of the budget are built on projected state allocations, using appropriate research-based
projection models. By considering both general fund and special revenue budgets as one system and assuring that
all budgets are aligned with and reflect the strategic plan goals, the district promotes a systemic approach to the
budgeting process.

For FY2011, because of the severe reduction in state funding, the district, with Board approval, relieved the
General Fund, where possible, by transferring to the debt service budget some items normally funded from the
General Operating Budget, but eligible for inclusion in debt service. Among those items is a $250,000 allocation
for instructional technology support, such as Promethean Boards, a phonic ear, and a fully-equipped interactive
classroom for district-wide use.

The annual budget process includes multiple steps:

• The district develops an annual budget calendar that clearly outlines the schedule for the budget development
process.

• School staff, SIC, and PTO officers participate in a needs assessment to determine the school’s greatest needs
and formulate budget requests.

• District staff meet individually with each principal to discuss the school’s needs in respective budget areas,
such as personnel, instructional programs and resources, and facility maintenance. The meeting includes attention
to ways in which budget funds will enhance the school’s instructional focus. Principals provide appropriate data
to support their budget requests.

• The superintendent and appropriate staff prepare a draft balanced budget, based on all information learned
through school meetings and the alignment of requests with strategic plan priorities.

• The Board holds several work sessions for in-depth review and discussion of budget-related issues prior to the
formal first reading of the budget.

• The draft budget (first reading) is presented to the district’s Board of Trustees for information and review.

• The Board hosts a public forum to receive input from the general public regarding the proposed General Fund
Budget.

• The final budget (second reading) is approved by the Board prior to the beginning of the fiscal year.

The transfer of budgeted funds among accounts is controlled by Board policy and district policies and/or
procedures. The policies establish approval parameters for budget transfers and ensure that budget transfers have
the necessary approvals.

Comprehensive District Operating Instructions define processes for financial activities in the district. An
accounting manual, reflective of the state accounting manual, is provided for each school. The district’s
Procurement Code, substantially similar to the state Procurement Code, outlines purchasing requirements,
depending on the dollar value of the intended purchase.

Multiple audits assure appropriate monitoring and control of financial functions. South Carolina law requires that
the district’s finances be audited annually by an external certified public accounting (CPA) firm. Additionally,
audits of special revenue accounts are conducted on an annual basis by the South Carolina Department of
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                                                                           Spartanburg County School District #3

Education and by the Federal Department of Education. The district has been highly recognized for its quality
financial practices.

At the school level, two schools are randomly selected each year for student activity fund audits. District staff
conduct the audits and composite findings are reported to the district’s external auditing firm during the annual
financial audit.

The district provides monthly reports to the Board of Trustees that summarize year-to-date expenditures compared
with budgeted funds in each respective budget category. District personnel who serve as budget managers receive
periodic reports that enable them to track actual spending against the budget.

The district’s Food Service Program, outsourced to Chartwells School Dining Services and governed by USDA
guidelines, is financially self-sufficient and requires no General Fund allocation. High standards of quality and
safety are in place and monitored. The program is audited regularly in conjunction with the district’s annual
financial audit.

To provide sound fiscal management and stability and to assure that the district is able to maintain its highly
favorable bond rating, Board policy requires a minimum operating reserve fund of ten percent (10%) of the total
approved General Fund Budget. The most recent financial audit indicated that, as of June 30, 2010, the reserve
fund was 14.18% of the district’s General Fund Expenditures Budget.

The district works to minimize debt issuance cost through membership in the South Carolina Association of
Governmental Organizations (SCAGO). SCAGO, formed in 2002 to promote strategies for pooling short- and
long-term debt issuance that benefit the state’s public school districts, is sponsored by the South Carolina
Association of School Administrators (SCASA) and the South Carolina Association of School Business Officials
(SCASBO). A non-profit corporation, SCAGO is governed by a seven-member board of directors, comprised of
local community leaders and school district superintendents.

3. How does the school system ensure, support, and monitor the provision of resource and support services that
meet the needs of all students?

The district provides the support necessary to ensure a quality school environment conducive to learning. District
support systems are designed to relieve the school administrative staff of operational responsibilities to the
greatest extent possible. Because school leaders’ primary responsibility is instructional leadership, the district has
made a concerted effort to structure district operational systems so that school leaders can function successfully in
that role without the distractions of operational issues.

A comprehensive technology plan guides the district’s use of technology for teaching, learning, and school
operations. Every academic classroom is equipped with computers and Promethean Boards, and a fully-equipped
interactive classroom is available for district-wide use. The district employs four district-level staff to support
technology, and the media specialist provides technology support at the school level. The technology plan
includes a structured “refresh” process, whereby equipment is periodically updated or replaced. Technology
funding is included in the district’s capital improvement plan.

District and school staff work with students and their parents to increase awareness of the compulsory attendance
law and the importance of regular school attendance. Services are focused on both prevention and intervention
through phone calls, letters, and home visits. A district social worker is responsible for taking appropriate steps to
resolve attendance problems and other issues of students who are homeless. The district participates in a county-
wide truancy court initiative to promote regular school attendance.

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All schools utilize the district social worker and community-based agencies to provide services to students and
families. The district social worker assesses student and family needs and assist in identifying barriers that
interfere with students’ ability to benefit most effectively from their educational experiences. Among many
activities, the social workers consult with school personnel to facilitate understanding of home and community
factors that affect the students; help families gain access to needed community resources; and assist in resolving
issues related to attendance, discipline, teen pregnancy, crime, and substance abuse issues.

The district provides full-time, Registered Nurses in 6 of our schools. Cannon’s Elementary School employs a
Licensed Practical Nurse, who is supervised by the District Nurse Coordinator. Nurses provide vision, hearing,
scoliosis, and blood pressure screenings with the assistance of nursing students from USC-Upstate and
Spartanburg Community College. Healthy Smiles of Spartanburg provides dental screenings for students in all
schools. Referrals are made to the appropriate health care provider for problems identified during the annual
screenings. The nurses meet with students & parents with chronic health care conditions to develop an appropriate
plan of care for the school day. They assure immunization law compliance, administer medications, provide health
education, and assist families to access medical resources. Several trained CPR/AED & first aid-certified
responders for medical emergencies are in place at each location. Annual employee health preventive services are
provided on-site by Prevention Partners, the division of the employee insurance program. Influenza vaccinations
are administered by local provider and mammography services are provided by SRHC Bearden Josey.


School counselors work in collaboration with other educators to implement a Comprehensive Developmental
Guidance and Counseling Program in all schools. As an integral part of the education process, the program
utilizes a variety of strategies to initiate and support direct services to students at all educational levels and to
encourage continuous growth in three broad dimensions: personal/social development; academic development;
and career development. School counselors carry out responsibilities aligned with six basic roles: program
management, guidance, counseling, consultation, coordination, and assessment.

The district participates in programs sponsored by community agencies and organizations.

• Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) sponsors H1N1 and other vaccination programs

• Department of Mental Health provides services for children and families who qualify. Community agencies
provide counseling support for students and families as needed.

The district’s Food Service Program, outsourced to Chartwells School Dining Services and governed by USDA
guidelines, is financially self-sufficient and requires no general fund allocation. High standards of quality and
safety are in place and monitored. In order to maximize the district’s participation in the federal government’s
free/reduced meals program, the district has assigned a staff member to coordinate and monitor program
implementation. Meal content, approved by certified dieticians, reflects guidelines for healthy eating; menus offer
choices for students and are revised on a regular basis. Nutritional information on all menu items is provided on
the district’s website.

The district provides full transportation services in compliance with state law. In addition, transportation is
provided for students who participate in the after-school and summer school programs, instructional field trips,
and athletics/co-curricular activities. To ensure student safety and security, video surveillance is operational on
every bus in the district’s fleet. The district transports special needs students all across the district and to county-
wide programs regardless of home school, based on which school offers the appropriate services.

The district has in place a comprehensive plan and associated procedures to be followed in case of emergency.
Each school and office in the district has developed a condensed, site-specific, user friendly emergency plan that
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                                                                          Spartanburg County School District #3


is consistent with the overall district plan. All plans and procedures are updated annually.

The district emphasizes safety through a variety of initiatives and strategies, including regularly scheduled safety
meetings involving appropriate personnel; monthly fire, tornado, and earthquake drills; periodic drills with the
Fire Marshall and local emergency preparedness personnel; CPR/AED/First Aid trainings each year for first
responders; student rosters that include the medical history of each child; and installation of security cameras on
all buses and in key school locations. Additionally, each school provides access during the school day through
only one secure entrance; a buzz-in system allows school personnel to monitor/identify visitors entering the
building prior to allowing access. Each school has at least five trained first aid-certified responders on staff.
Evacuation routes are posted in each classroom and throughout the schools.

A seven-member maintenance staff is responsible for the district’s data-driven facility maintenance process.
School Dude, an electronic work-order maintenance system, allows for initial entry of a work order at the site.
School Dude enables the district to monitor and manage maintenance requests and to respond to the requests in a
timely and appropriate manner. Principals discuss major facility maintenance needs with district staff during the
budget process each year.


Overall Assessment:

Operational: The school system has human, material, and fiscal resources to implement a curriculum that enables
students to achieve expectations for student learning, to meet special needs, and to comply with applicable
regulations. The system employs and allocates staff members who are well qualified for their assignments. The
system provides ongoing learning opportunities for all staff to improve their effectiveness, including both
professional and support staff. The system ensures compliance with applicable local, state, and federal regulations.




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          Standard 6. Stakeholder Communications &
                         Relationships

STANDARD: The system fosters effective communications and relationships with and among its stakeholders.

Impact Statement: Impact Statement: A system is successful in meeting this standard when it has the
understanding, commitment, and support of stakeholders. System and school personnel seek opportunities for
collaboration and shared leadership among stakeholders to help students learn and advance improvement efforts.

Indicators Rubric: Please indicate the degree to which the noted practices/processes are in place in the school
system. The responses to the rubric should help the school system identify areas of strength and opportunities for
improvement as well as guide and inform the school system's responses to the focus questions.

Indicators Evidence: For each Indicator, click the (Add Evidence) link to provide examples of evidence that
support the rubric response.

Definitions of Indicators Rubric:

            Not Evident                  Little or no evidence exists
            Emerging                     Evidence indicates early or preliminary stages of
                                         implementation of practice
            Operational                  Evidence indicates practices and procedures are actively
                                         implemented
            Highly Functional            Evidence indicates practices and procedures are fully
                                         integrated and effectively and consistently implemented



INDICATORS: In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

6.1 Fosters collaboration with community stakeholders to support student learning:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Agendas, minutes, calendar of parent meetings

Calendar of events that promote stakeholder involvement

District staff affirm that stakeholders are involved in many aspects of district events, activities, decisions

Internship/partnership agreements with community-based business and agencies

Parents and community members regularly volunteer time in district


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                                                                           Spartanburg County School District #3

Policies regarding credit for service learning

Policies regarding suggestions, grievances

Stakeholder survey data

Stakeholders affirm that they are involved in many aspects of district events, activities, decisions

Other: District Strategic Plan; School Renewal Plans; Title 1 Plans; Title II Plan; Board Facility Use Policy;
Meeting Agendas/Minutes (Board, Principals, Leadership Council, PTO/SIC, Parent Advisory Council);
Community Forum Schedules; Golden Achievement Award Documents; School Sign-in Logs; District/School
websites/newsletters; Teach American History Materials

6.2 Uses system-wide strategies to listen to and communicate with stakeholders:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Calendars, agendas, minutes of parent meetings

District Improvement Committee: agendas, minutes, membership

Emails, phone answering system

Newsletters, brochures, letters, memos

Parent - Teacher conferences schedule

Policies regarding formal inclusion of stakeholder involvement

Stakeholders affirm they have variety of opportunities to be formally involved in life of district

Steering Committee meetings: agendas, minutes, membership

Web page dedicated to parents/community members

Wide variety of stakeholder communication documents/avenues

Other: District Strategic Plan; Title 1 Plan; Good News at Board Meetings

6.3 Solicits the knowledge and skills of stakeholders to enhance the work of the system:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Advisory Committees

Calendar, agendas, minutes, committee membership

District staff affirm that they regularly include community in preparing instructional delivery activities

Policies regarding volunteer involvement
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                                                                         Spartanburg County School District #3



Schedule of volunteer activities

Stakeholder survey data

Stakeholders affirm that their suggestions and recommendations are acted upon

Stakeholders affirm that they are actively involved in providing expertise

Other:

Other: Meeting Agendas/Minutes (Cabinet, Parent Advisory Council, District Leadership Council, Chamber Area
Groups, PTO/SIC); Annual Report to the Community; Board Meeting Public Input

6.4 Communicates the expectations for student learning and goals for improvement to all stakeholders:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Brochures, pamphlets

Newsletters about student performance

Online calendar, schedule, and news/updates

Parent -teacher conferences: calendar, procedures, participation data

Parent Handbook

Parents and students are informed and involved in developing individualized learning plans for students

Parents and students are informed and involved in making course selections

Regularly published newsletters to community

Stakeholders affirm that they are knowledgeable about student learning

Student Handbook

Other: News releases about student performance; Civic Club Collaborations; Business Partners Roster;
District/Public Library Collaboration Materials; Collaborative Curriculum Development Materials; Career Day
Documents; Lunch/Learn Materials

6.5 Provides information that is meaningful and useful to stakeholders:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Parent -teacher conferences: calendar, procedures, participation data

Policies regarding reporting schedule

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                                                                          Spartanburg County School District #3


Report cards

Other: District/School/Teacher Newsletters; Meeting Agendas/Minutes (Board, Principals, Leadership Team,
PTO/SIC, Chamber Area Council)

Focus Questions:

1. How does the school system's leadership ensure that the system and its schools are responsive to community
expectations and stakeholder satisfaction?

The district uses a variety of processes and strategies to meet community expectations and promote stakeholder
satisfaction.

• The agenda for each board meeting provides opportunity for public comment, during which members of the
general public can voice opinions on issues about instruction, school-related services, and district-related issues.
Individuals wishing to speak must make the request prior to the meeting; each is allowed five minutes to address
the board. The board responds to all comments in writing.

• All board meeting agendas are sent to the media and posted on the district’s website.

• The superintendent meets regularly with representatives of several constituent groups, including principals,
district administrators, teachers, and School Improvement Councils. The superintendent and district administrators
are highly visible in the community; they regularly attend various events, hold offices and leadership roles in civic
clubs, and serve as guest speakers at meetings and other functions.

• The district holds information sessions at locations across the district to address issues of concern to the
community. District staff attend faculty meetings periodically to address and clarify issues of concern to teachers.
School Improvement Councils in each school share the community’s perspective with school leaders and
participate in decisions about various aspects of school operations.

• A district-level Advisory Council, comprised of two parents from each school’s School Improvement Council,
meets quarterly with the superintendent to discuss issues of interest or concern.

• The District Three Leadership Council and the district’s Communication Council meet quarterly to discuss
district and school matters.

• The superintendent meets regularly with the area Chamber of Commerce groups.

• District and school websites are structured to ensure that information is easily accessible to respective
stakeholders. Additionally, each school regularly publishes a newsletter for parents; classroom teachers send
information to parents on a regular basis; and information is posted regularly on school marquees.

• Parents can access teacher websites through e-Chalk to obtain information about homework, classroom news,
and upcoming school events.

• The high school course guide, programs of study document, and college guide include information about
program clusters, career paths, and course selection; promotion policies; state and district grading scales; and the
college selection and application process.


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• Each spring, the State Department of Education distributes three surveys to schools to assess satisfaction levels
among teachers, parents, and students. Teachers are able to take the survey online during February; parent and
student surveys are conducted in hard copy during the month of March. Resulting data provide meaningful
information for district and school leaders about levels of stakeholder satisfaction and areas of stakeholder
concern. Twice each year, parents of students in Title I schools are asked to complete a survey related to Title I
services.

• The AlertNow telephone messaging system provides parents with school news and other information of interest
in a timely manner.

• Student-parent handbooks, developed at each school, include general school news, calendars and schedules, and
information designed to address parents’ questions and concerns.

• Parent facilitators at Title I schools address parent concerns and assist parents and students with issues related to
classroom performance, health, food, and housing.

Always of concern to stakeholders is the issue of student and school safety. The district emphasizes safety through
a variety of initiatives and strategies, including required OSHA training, regular safety meetings involving
appropriate personnel; monthly fire, tornado, and earthquake drills; periodic drills with the Fire Marshall and local
emergency preparedness personnel; and installation of security cameras at all schools and on all buses.
Additionally, each school provides access during the school day through only one secure entrance; a buzz-in
system allows school personnel to monitor/identify visitors entering the building, prior to allowing access. Each
school has at least one trained first aid-certified responder on staff. Evacuation routes are posted in each
classroom.

Over the past decade, several District Three schools have earned the Red Carpet Award, given annually by the
South Carolina Department of Education to schools that create a responsive, family-friendly school environment
and provide excellent customer service for stakeholders. The award is in effect for a three-year period, after which
the school has the opportunity to reapply for the Red Carpet distinction. District Three “Red Carpet” schools
include Cannons, Clifdale, Cowpens, and Pacolet elementary schools and Middle School of Pacolet.

Strong business and community partnerships in place across the district promote collaboration, enhance and
support student learning, and foster increased stakeholder involvement and satisfaction.

• The district’s technology initiative occurred as a direct result of input and support from the business
community.

• Business leaders encourage and support the district’s service learning and School-to-Work programs, and
participate widely in the district’s annual career fair.

• Through the annual Education and Economic Development Act (EEDA) survey, members of the business
community share their views/ideas about workplace needs.

• Business leaders serve on the Daniel Morgan Technology Center’s advisory councils to assure that course
offerings are aligned with the expectations/needs of industry.

2. What avenues are used to communicate information to stakeholders about the effectiveness of the school
system and its schools, including the sharing of student performance results?

The district communicates the system’s vision, beliefs, mission, performance goals, strategies, and results-related
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information on a regular basis through a variety of media, including the district/school websites, district/school
newsletters, the Annual Report to the People, the district’s online telephone system (AlertNow), school marquees,
and various publications, brochures, and newspaper articles. Additionally, stakeholders can access District Three
information through social networking sites including Facebook and Twitter.

District and school goals and expectations are reviewed with School Improvement Councils at their monthly
meetings and with PTO members at regularly scheduled meetings; they are communicated with the general public
through the district’s website, through frequently published district and school newsletters, and through other
available media.
Especially effective vehicles for sharing information with stakeholders include the District Three Leadership
Council and the district’s Communication Council. The Leadership Council, born from the original strategic
planning process in 1997, is made up of 30 individuals, two-thirds of whom are non-employee community
leaders. The Council includes representatives from each of the seven geographic areas of the district (Cannons,
Clifton, Converse, Cowpens, Glendale, Pacolet, and Whitestone). The Communications Council is an internal
body, which includes representatives from each employee group. Both groups meet quarterly with the
superintendent to discuss district priorities and issues of concern.

The district communicates student performance data in a variety of formats:

• School Report Cards, published by the state of South Carolina, are made available to parents and other
stakeholders annually.

• Schools develop and publish newsletters; many teachers prepare and disseminate weekly/monthly newsletters to
parents; teachers have classroom websites that focus on teaching, learning, and student achievement.

• The district website is updated regularly to keep parents, the community, and employees informed about the
district’s progress toward its vision and goals; school websites are updated in a similar manner.

• Public meetings/presentations are held regularly to inform parents, school faculty, students, legislators, and
community members of district progress.

Various assessment results are disseminated in a timely manner, taking care not to breach any embargoes that may
be in effect. News releases highlighting the results are posted on the district’s website and distributed to local
media. Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) data and South Carolina School Report Card information are
communicated in a similar manner and made available to all parents and community members. Comprehensive
reports are provided to the Board of Trustees at its monthly meeting following release of results.

Other efforts to communicate student performance results include the following:

• Through the ParentPortal, a component of PowerSchool, parents can securely access assessment data online for
their child/children at any time.

• Progress reports/report cards routinely inform parents of students’ progress.

• Parent/teacher conferences at the end of the first and third quarters include a review of data related to the
student’s performance on various achievement measures. Parent conferences with students who are failing or in
danger of failing are scheduled as needed. The district reminds parents of upcoming parent conferences through
AlertNow, the telephone “call out” system.

• IEP meetings include a review of relevant student assessment results; the data guide decisions about program
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                                                                         Spartanburg County School District #3

placement and modifications.

• School faculties engage in professional conversations that are data-based and that inform and guide instructional
planning.

• Professional development opportunities are suggested based on student and/or teacher performance data.

• Students are made aware of their own achievement data to encourage goal-setting and improved performance.

• As appropriate, School Report Card information and other assessment data are shared with SIC and PTO
members at their monthly meetings at respective schools. Achievement data guide the annual SIC goal-setting
process at each school.

• The district’s Annual Report to the Community, disseminated to both internal and external stakeholders,
includes assessment data summaries and pertinent performance information.


Overall Assessment:

Operational: The school system has the understanding, commitment, and support of stakeholders. System and
school personnel seek opportunities for collaboration and shared leadership among stakeholders to help students
learn and advance improvement efforts and can demonstrate good participation by some stakeholder groups.




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                                                                         Spartanburg County School District #3



              Standard 7. Commitment to Continuous
                           Improvement

STANDARD: The system establishes, implements, and monitors a continuous process of improvement that
focuses on student performance.

Impact Statement: A system is successful in meeting this standard when it implements a collaborative and
ongoing process for improvement that aligns the functions of the system with the expectations for student
learning. Improvement efforts are sustained and the system and its schools demonstrate progress in improving
student performance. New improvement efforts are informed by the results of earlier efforts through analysis of
student performance, system effectiveness, and assessment of the improvement process.

Indicators Rubric: Please indicate the degree to which the noted practices/processes are in place in the school
system. The responses to the rubric should help the school system identify areas of strength and opportunities for
improvement as well as guide and inform the school system's responses to the focus questions.

Indicators Evidence: For each Indicator, click the (Add Evidence) link to provide examples of evidence that
support the rubric response.

Definitions of Indicators Rubric:

           Not Evident                 Little or no evidence exists
           Emerging                    Evidence indicates early or preliminary stages of
                                       implementation of practice
           Operational                 Evidence indicates practices and procedures are actively
                                       implemented
           Highly Functional           Evidence indicates practices and procedures are fully
                                       integrated and effectively and consistently implemented



INDICATORS: In fulfillment of this standard, the system:

7.1 Engages in a continuous process of improvement that articulates the vision and purpose the system is
pursuing (Vision); maintains a rich and current description of students, their performance, system
effectiveness, and the community (Profile); employs goals and interventions to improve student
performance (Plan); and documents and uses the results to inform future improvement efforts (Results):
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Continuous Improvement Plan - district and individual schools

District staff affirm their involvement in a specific program that supports continuous improvement


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District staff affirm their involvement in continuous improvement committees

Graduation and retention rates

Information/Data system

Postsecondary engagement: employment, college

Professional Development Plan: agenda, topics

Record of student performance improvement efforts

Specific program initiatives to support continuous improvement

Stakeholder survey (satisfaction) data

State/Federal Accountability Plan

Other: Meeting Agendas/Minutes (Board, Faculties, SIC, Special Areas)

7.2 Engages stakeholders in the processes of continuous improvement:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Calendar, agendas, minutes, sign-in sheets demonstrating stakeholder involvement in district and school
improvement

District and School Improvement plan indicating membership of committees

Policies, procedures for district and school improvement committee work

Stakeholder survey data demonstrating stakeholder involvement in district and school improvement

Stakeholders affirm their involvement in continuous improvement process

Other: District, school, and teacher websites/newsletters; Parent/Teacher conference logs; Title I Parent Compacts

7.3 Ensures that each school's plan for continuous improvement is aligned with the system's vision and
expectations for student learning:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Calendar, agendas, minutes of school improvement meetings

Data: student performance, stakeholder opinion are used in development of school improvement plan

District staff affirm their understanding of the impact of programs that support student learning

District staff demonstrate capacity for providing methodologies to increase student performance


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                                                                               Spartanburg County School District #3

Evaluation data demonstrating impact of plan and actions taken to remediate

School improvement plans demonstrate alignment with district vision, purpose

Staff, students affirm their understanding of student performance targets

Student performance targets are communicated to all stakeholders

Vision, purpose posted in district-wide facilities

Other: Academic Assistance Plans; Teacher Data Notebooks; Teacher Lesson Plans

7.4 Ensures that each school's plan for continuous improvement includes a focus on increasing learning for
all students and closing gaps between current and expected student performance levels:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
District guidelines and professional learning provide strategies for effective instruction for closing achievement
gaps

District staff affirm that they regularly use data to inform their practices

District staff affirm their involvement in evaluating the impact of instruction on student growth

District staff meetings regularly use data to inform their discussions and decisions

School improvement plans demonstrate evaluation of goals, objectives, and strategies impact on student growth

Other: Teacher Lesson Plans; Summer School/Extended Day Schedules

7.5 Provides research-based professional development for system and school personnel to help them achieve
improvement goals:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
Continuous Improvement Plan - district and individual schools

District staff affirm their involvement in professional learning

Personnel Policies that outline staff evaluation process

Professional Development Plan: agenda, topics

Other: Federal/State Program Plans (Title I, Title II, Title III, IDEA, PDSI)

7.6 Monitors and communicates the results of improvement efforts to stakeholders:
Operational

Evidence Provided:

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                                                                         Spartanburg County School District #3

Annual Report

District staff and stakeholders affirm the use of performance data during Parent-Teacher conferences

Information/Data system

Newsletters, brochures

Parent-Teacher conferences

Staffing assignments support monitoring and reporting of continuous improvement efforts

Stakeholders affirm receipt of district communication regarding improvement efforts

Other: Parent Portal; Student Report Cards/Progress Reports; Meeting Agendas/Minutes (Board, Principals,
Faculties, SIC/PTO, District Leadership Council, Chamber Area Council)

7.7 Evaluates and documents the effectiveness and impact of its continuous process of improvement :
Operational

Evidence Provided:
District and School Improvement Committee meetings: calendar, agenda, minutes, dispositions

Evaluation of effectiveness of continuous improvement plan and process

Stakeholders affirm knowledge of an evaluation of the district's improvement efforts

Other: Meeting Agendas/Minutes (Board, Faculties, SIC/PTO); GBE/SAFE-T Observation/Conference
Schedules; Teacher Lesson Plans

7.8 Allocates and protects time for planning and engaging in continuous improvement efforts system-wide:
Operational

Evidence Provided:
District and School Improvement Committee meetings:calendar, agenda, minutes, dispositions

District staff affirm that time is allocated for improvement planning, implementation, and monitoring

Policies and procedures for engaging in district-wide and individual school improvement planning,
implementation, and monitoring

Other: Board Policy; State Accreditation Documents; Faculty/Student Handbooks

7.9 Provides direction and assistance to its schools and operational units to support their continuous
improvement efforts:
Highly Functional

Evidence Provided:
District and School Improvement Committee meetings:calendar, agenda, minutes, dispositions

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District expectations and guidelines for all schools and departments to engage in a continuous improvement
process

District staff affirm their knowledge of the district's expectations and guidelines for supporting student
performance

Other: District Support Program Documents; District/School Budgets; Safety Meeting Sign-in Sheets;
Technology/Maintenance Work Order Status Reports

Focus Questions:

1. Describe the process for continuous improvement used by the school system and its schools and the impact
of this process on student learning and system effectiveness.

Data-driven at all levels of the organization, the district adheres firmly to its practice of always putting students
first, in accordance with parameters cited in the district strategic plan:

• We will always make decisions in the best interest of students
• We will always give priority to the preK-12 instructional program

The first priority in the district’s continuous improvement process is that all teachers must be fully certified by
the State of South Carolina and must meet the “highly qualified” requirements of No Child Left Behind.
Currently 99.7% of all classes are taught by instructors who are “highly qualified.”

The strategic planning process at both the district and school levels serves as the foundation of the district’s
continuous improvement efforts. While district and school plans share a common framework and are based on the
same shared beliefs, vision, mission, and goal areas, school plans include research-based objectives and strategies
designed to address the unique needs of the school, as evidenced by available performance data. District and
school plans are updated annually, and new plans are developed every five years. As required by the South
Carolina Department of Education (SDE), the district annually prepares and submits to SDE an accountability
report, which details the district’s status on elements required by the Early Childhood Development and
Academic Assistance Act and the Education Accountability Act.

In addition to the common framework, each school plan consists of a demographic profile, needs assessment
summary, and action plan. In developing the action plan, the school sets interim performance goals to guide
academic expectations and to provide focus for staff development. Targets and measures are cited throughout the
action plan. School improvement plans are reviewed and monitored by district administrators to ensure that each
school plan is aligned with the district plan and is implemented as outlined.

At both the district and school levels, internal and external stakeholders, including administrators, teachers,
students, parents, community members, and business leaders, are invited to participate in the strategic planning
process. Planning team members review the plan framework; analyze student achievement, teacher quality, and
school climate data from multiple sources; study relevant research pertaining to the objectives and strategies; draw
conclusions; and make recommendations for plan revisions. Updated district and school plans are reviewed and
approved annually by the district’s Board of Trustees.

The district maintains a comprehensive profile of the system, the students, and the community. Available at both
the district and school levels, data are maintained electronically through multiple data systems. Student data are
maintained through the state-required PowerSchool and PowerTeacher systems, and include individual and group

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demographics, as well as data summaries related to both achievement and non-achievement measures.

Because the district is data-driven, the data analysis process in Spartanburg School District Three is systemic,
cyclical, and ongoing:

• The superintendent, district staff, and school principals analyze and discuss district and school data
• Principals review data with teachers at faculty and grade level meetings, and with parents at SIC/PTO meetings
• Teachers meet with students to review performance data and set goals
• Through their student councils, students promote district and school goals
• Per Board policy, teachers conduct conferences with parents at least twice per year.

The district’s evolving vertical team process, when fully implemented, will support and enhance the continuous
improvement process. Building principals monitor the implementation of district-wide initiatives, such as
math/science kits and literacy strategies, to assure they are effective.

District and school administrators, district support staff, school leadership teams, and classroom teachers regularly
review and analyze student achievement data from both summary and disaggregated perspectives. Achievement
measures include the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS); High School Assessment Program
(HSAP); End of Course Examination Program (EOCEP); SAT/ACT; EXPLORE; PLAN/PSAT; Advanced
Placement (AP); Measures of Academic Progress (MAP); Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA); and
classroom grade distributions. Attention is also given to critical non-achievement measures, such as student and
teacher attendance, student discipline, and drop-out rate. Other data of interest include graduation rates, Adequate
Yearly Progress (AYP) summaries; outcomes of the Education Oversight Committee Report Card Survey; School
Report Card information; scholarship awards, and first-year college performance of prior-year seniors.

The superintendent’s annual evaluation is based on district priorities and goals for improved student achievement
established by the board and aligned with the district’s strategic plan. The Board determines, based on the data
presented by the superintendent for each respective goal, whether the goal will remain on the priority list for the
subsequent year. The superintendent meets regularly with district staff, school faculties, parents, students,
legislators, and community members to provide updates on district progress toward the goals. With a view toward
continuous improvement, all presentations and discussions are data-based and related to both achievement and
non-achievement variables and to outcomes of the annual state parent/teacher/student surveys. Data summarizing
progress on respective goals are published annually in the district’s Annual Report to the People.

A similar evaluation process is followed annually at each school. The principal leads the faculty in a review of
goals-related data; the subsequent year’s school renewal plan is updated to reflect the outcomes of the review.
School leadership teams meet with the superintendent each fall to review progress on prior year goals and present
goals for the current year. Teachers help individual students to review their performance data and set achievement
goals.

The district’s personnel evaluation processes are data-driven and designed to support and facilitate professional
growth and improvement that promote enhanced student achievement. Principals, assistant principals, teachers
and other professional staff are formally evaluated every three years, using the appropriate state evaluation model.
Classified personnel are evaluated less formally on an ongoing basis.

In addition to collaboratively analyzing student and school data and using those data to inform instructional
planning, teachers regularly participate in collegial conversations within and across schools and other professional
growth activities focused on research-based instructional practice. Student work samples are often the subject of
grade level and department meeting discussions.


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Each middle and high school student updates his/her Individual Graduation Plan (IGP) annually. The IGP process,
required by the South Carolina Education and Economic Development Act (EEDA), mandates that each student
develop an individual graduation plan in sixth grade.

2. What process is used to ensure that the improvement goals reflect student learning needs and are aligned
with the vision and purpose of the school system and its schools?

The superintendent and district leaders meet semi-monthly with principals to review and discuss student and
school performance data, survey results, and other information related to instructional leadership, student
achievement, parent concerns, professional development, and annual district priorities.

District and school leaders establish yearly priorities, based on the district strategic plan, to guide the work of their
staffs. Individual school goals, also aligned with the district plan, are established in conjunction with the school
improvement planning process. The superintendent meets individually with each principal at regular intervals
throughout the year to review and discuss school-specific student achievement data, goals and action plans for the
year, and the school’s progress toward meeting those goals. District and school leaders regularly visit classrooms
to monitor progress provide support. They observe instruction, review teachers’ long-range plans, ask questions,
and, true to the district’s practice of always putting students first, assure that teachers have what they need to
achieve their instructional goals.

District and school goals and expectations are reviewed with School Improvement Councils at their monthly
meetings and with PTO members at regularly scheduled meetings; they are communicated with the general public
through the district’s website, through frequently published district and school newsletters, and through other
available media.

A data-driven approach to instructional planning is a priority at both the district and school levels. Schools
emphasize data-driven processes through activities and structures that provide a vehicle for professional, data-
based conversations about student learning among school faculty. Data resulting from MAP assessments are
particularly significant and helpful in this context. MAP, an online, formative assessment system developed by the
Northwest Evaluation Association, is administered to students in kindergarten through grade nine 2-3 times each
year to measure student growth and to identify specific learning strengths and weaknesses. Because the system is
aligned to the South Carolina academic standards, district and school personnel are able to identify each student’s
individual strengths and areas in need of improvement and to differentiate instruction accordingly.

Student learning needs are addressed through the core curriculum, rigorous instructional practices, re-teaching,
and differentiated instruction. Lessons are designed to encourage higher order thinking for all students.
Enrichment activities and extended day programs enhance support for students in need of academic assistance.
Through use of the parent portal, parents have the opportunity to closely monitor their child’s progress and
performance. Teacher-created formative assessments and summative assessments are developed to identify
specific needs and inform daily instruction.

3. What process is used to ensure that system and school personnel are provided professional development and
technical assistance to implement interventions and achieve improvement goals?

The district provides professional development for teachers and other staff members to support the
teaching/learning process. Professional development opportunities are aligned with district strategic plan
initiatives. Areas of recent district focus include balanced literacy at the elementary level, writing across the
curriculum, curriculum alignment, development of formative and summative assessments, instructional
differentiation, technology integration, the revised Bloom’s taxonomy, and the study and analysis of student
achievement data.
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Because the district gives priority to protecting instructional time, professional development is often scheduled
during common planning time, before or after school, on designated professional development days, during the
summer, or through webinars to avoid disrupting the instructional process. Professional development is delivered
and practiced in a variety of ways, including direct instruction, coaching, mentoring, structured, focused collegial
discussions about student achievement and student work, and technical assistance. Teachers serve as
leaders/facilitators for district and school professional development; district instructional coaches for literacy,
mathematics, science, and technology support teachers in numerous ways, depending on need. In collaboration
with classroom teachers, district staff review, revise, and update curriculum documents annually.

All teachers who are employed under annual and continuing contracts are evaluated and assisted, using the state-
defined goals-based education (GBE) process and the ADEPT/SAFE-T system performance dimensions. The
process ensures that teachers meet the required expectations for teaching and serves as the basis for individual
professional development decisions. A comprehensive teacher induction program supports teachers new to the
profession through a year-long system of mentoring, study, and varied support activities; participants earn three
graduate credit hours.

A major innovation over the past several years has been the district’s implementation of key practices defined by
the Southern Regional Education Board in its High Schools That Work (HSTW), Making Middle Grades Work
(MMGW), and Career Centers That Work (CCTW) networks. Through quality professional development,
including attendance at SREB state and regional conferences, the district has enabled teachers to implement these
initiatives effectively.

District and school staff benefit from the district’s membership in the Upstate Schools Consortium, a
collaboration of 12 upstate districts and Furman University. The Consortium sponsors seminars and conferences
with nationally known educators, such as Mike Schmoker, nationally renowned educator and author of Results
Now. State PDSI funds support teachers’ attendance at state and national professional conferences.

Through a partnership with Converse College, the district offers comprehensive programs for aspiring principals
and assistant principals. The programs are based on professional standards developed by the Interstate School
Leaders Consortium (ISLLC) and focus on areas such as vision, instructional leadership, school and community
partnerships, ethics, and communications. Teacher cohorts also have the opportunity for graduate credit through
Converse as a result of participating in school professional development initiatives. The district offers tuition
reimbursement for participants.

Instructional technology, as outlined in the district’s information technology plan, is available throughout the
district to promote engaging classroom instruction. Computer labs and mobile laptop carts are in place in all
schools, and Promethean Boards are currently used in classrooms across the district. Each classroom has four or
five computers for individual student work. The district’s acceptable use policy defines the process for
monitoring student use of technology.

An instructional technology specialist provides technology training for teachers and assists teachers to implement
available technology effectively. All teachers are required to demonstrate technology proficiency every five years
by completing at least 3 graduate hours or its equivalent in technology integration instruction. Students must
demonstrate technology proficiency as a requirement for a high school diploma.

Other growth and development opportunities for professional staff include:

• On-going district and school seminars and workshops for teachers
• Guidance for teachers in the effective use of instructional tools such as literacy strategies, science kits, Math
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Out of The Box (MOOTB), math manipulatives, and technology resources
• Support for staff attendance at local, regional, and national professional conferences, particularly NWEA and
SREB national and regional meetings.
• An annual leadership workshop for administrators
• A Summer Institute facilitated by district teachers for district teachers

4. How does the leadership ensure that the improvement plan is implemented, monitored, achieved, and
communicated to stakeholders?

The district promotes focus on and accountability for results through a variety of structures and strategies:

• The Board of Trustees focuses on student performance and district progress on a regular basis.

• The superintendent’s annual evaluation is based on goals for improved student achievement established by the
board and aligned with the district’s strategic plan.

• The superintendent and district leaders meet semi-monthly with principals to review and discuss student and
school performance data, survey results, and other information related to instructional leadership, student
achievement, parent concerns, professional development, and annual district priorities.

• The school improvement planning process is designed to promote and support continuous improvement; school
plans are reviewed and updated annually.

• Conversations about student achievement occur regularly at the district level; in individual schools; in
parent/teacher conferences; in PTO and SIC meetings; and in gatherings of business partners and community
leaders.

• School leaders conduct regular classroom walk-through observations and provide meaningful feedback to
teachers about the instructional process.

The district communicates the system’s vision, beliefs, mission, performance goals, strategies, and results-related
information, both internally and externally, in a variety of formats:

• School Report Cards, published by the state of South Carolina, are sent to parents and other stakeholders
annually.
• Schools develop and publish newsletters; many teachers prepare and disseminate weekly/monthly newsletters to
parents; teachers have classroom websites that focus on teaching, learning, and student achievement.
• The district website is updated regularly to keep parents, the community and employees informed about the
district’s progress toward its vision and goals.
• Public meetings/presentations are held regularly to inform and receive feedback from parents, school faculty,
students, legislators, and community members about district progress.

The district’s philosophy, consistent with that of Edwards Deming, is to continuously look for ways to improve
systems and processes through the use of solid best practice research, strong data tools, and state-of-the-art
technology.




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Overall Assessment:

Operational: The school system implements a collaborative and ongoing process for improvement that aligns
most functions of the system and its schools with the expectations for student learning. Improvement efforts are
sustained and the system demonstrates progress in improving student performance, system and school
effectiveness. New improvement efforts are informed by the results of earlier efforts through reflection and
assessment of the improvement process.




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                                                                            Spartanburg County School District #3



                                             QA Methods

1. What processes does the district use to monitor and document improvement?

Spartanburg School District Three provides quality assurance through data-driven systems and processes and a
continued focus on student achievement. The District Strategic Plan serves as the foundation of the district’s
continuous improvement efforts. The goals-based, data-driven school improvement planning process is aligned to
the district process; the budget reflects district plan priorities; and personnel evaluation systems are aligned to the
strategic plan.



The superintendent’s annual evaluation is based on district priorities and goals established by the board and
aligned with the district’s strategic plan. The Board determines, based on the data presented by the superintendent
for each respective goal, whether the goal will remain on the priority list for the subsequent year.



Multiple audits assure appropriate monitoring and control of financial functions. South Carolina law requires that
the district’s finances be audited annually by an external CPA firm. Additionally, audits are conducted on an
annual basis by the South Carolina Department of Education and by the Federal Department of Education. The
district’s Food Service Program is audited regularly for compliance with health and safety guidelines by an
independent, external auditing firm. The instructional program is validated through the accreditation process
conducted by AdvancED and State Department of Education external review teams.

2. How does the district provide meaningful feedback and support to its schools and across the district?

Accountability data included on district and school report cards and AYP reports help stakeholders assess district
effectiveness. Data are disseminated widely and posted on the district’s website. District and school staff and
School Improvement Councils study data resulting from both sources, as well as data resulting from
administration of the state’s annual report card surveys of students, parents, and teachers, to identify strengths and
areas in need of improvement. The district and individual schools develop plans to address identified barriers to
effective instruction.



Student performance data are used to make comparisons to schools and districts in South Carolina that are similar
demographically to Spartanburg School District Three. These comparisons include results of PASS, HSAP,
EOCEP, SAT, ACT, and Advanced Placement assessments. Disaggregated data provide information specific to
gender, ethnicity, LEP status, disability status, economic status as measured by free and reduced lunch
participation, and other demographic categories that can help target certain needs within specific populations.
Formative assessment results from MAP are widely disseminated, analyzed, and used to support improved student
achievement.

3. How does the district ensure that the AdvancED standards are met by all the schools and the district as a
whole?

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                                                                          Spartanburg County School District #3


The superintendent’s cabinet, comprised of six district leaders, meets weekly to discuss issues related to the
strategic plan; to establish and monitor district priorities, processes, policies, and procedures; and to address
concerns as they arise. The focus is on continuous improvement. Cabinet members are responsible to share
outcomes of the discussions with their staffs. The superintendent also meets with all district supervisors monthly.



The superintendent and district administrators meet regularly with principals to discuss relevant issues and to hear
concerns and suggestions for moving the district forward. Principals are responsible to share outcomes with their
staffs.



Each principal leads the faculty in an annual review of goals-related data; the subsequent year’s school renewal
plan is updated to reflect the outcomes of the review. Principals meet with the superintendent each fall to review
progress on prior-year goals and present goals for the current year. Teachers help students to set data-based goals
and monitor their progress regularly.



The School Improvement Council at each school, comprised of parents, community members, teachers, and
students, meets monthly to discuss school-related matters, to review data pertaining to student achievement and
other functions within the school, and to provide suggestions to the principal for continuous school improvement.

4. How does the district regularly collect, use, and communicate results?

The district maintains a comprehensive profile of the school system, its schools and its students to support
analysis of student performance and to guide instructional planning. In addition to student demographics, the
profile includes outcomes resulting from a variety of national, state, and local assessments. Data are disaggregated
by gender, race, economic status, program participation, and other data categories of interest, and are made
available to district and school staffs in easily accessible electronic form as soon as they become available.



The district communicates student performance data in a variety of formats, including School Report Cards,
published by the state of South Carolina; district, school, and classroom newsletters; district and school websites;
and at regularly scheduled public meetings and community forums. Through the Parent Portal, a component of
PowerSchool, parents can securely access assessment data online for their child/children at any time.



As outcomes of various assessments become available, they are disseminated in a timely manner, taking care not
to breach any embargoes that may be in effect. News releases highlighting the results are posted on the district’s
website and distributed to local media. Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) data and South Carolina School Report
Card information are communicated in a similar manner and made available to all parents and community
members. Comprehensive reports are provided to the Board of Trustees following the release of results.




AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                   Page 93 of 98
                                                                       Spartanburg County School District #3

The superintendent meets regularly with district staff, school faculties, parents, students, legislators, and
community members to provide updates on district progress toward the goals outlined in the district’s strategic
plan. With a view toward continuous improvement, all presentations and discussions are data-based and related to
both achievement and non-achievement variables and to outcomes of the annual state parent/teacher/student
surveys. Data summarizing progress on respective goals are published annually in the district’s Annual Report to
the People.




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                                                                           Spartanburg County School District #3



                                               Conclusion

The following focus questions reflect the school's overall analysis of its internal evaluation of the accreditation
standards.

Focus Questions

As you review your responses to the standards, what major trends, themes, or areas of focus emerge that cut
across the seven standards?

• Clear focus on student achievement

• A quality program for recruiting, inducting, developing, evaluating, and retaining staff

• Comprehensive analysis and use of data for instructional and operational planning

• A District Strategic Plan that guides the school improvement, budget, personnel evaluation, and resource
allocation processes

• Comprehensive technology systems that support teaching, learning, and school operations

• A clear focus on safety for students and staff

Based on your review of these cross-cutting themes/trends and each of the seven standards, what would you
consider to be your school system's greatest strengths?

• Members of the Board of Trustees are civic-minded, passionate leaders who work consistently for the common
good of the district and its students

• Student achievement continues to improve.

• The strategic planning process is systemic across the district; the school improvement planning process mirrors
the district process; district and school goals are aligned.

• Personnel evaluation systems are aligned with strategic plan goals.

• The budget planning process is aligned with and reflects the strategic plan goals.

• The analysis and effective use of data guide instructional planning and district/school operations.

• A comprehensive system of safety nets is in place to support at-risk students.

• Human resources systems effectively promote recruitment, induction, development, retention and evaluation of
quality personnel.



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                                                                          Spartanburg County School District #3

      99 percent of all classes are taught by staff who are “highly qualified” under No Child Left Behind.
      66% of certified staff hold advanced degrees.
      The district leads the state in the percentage of teachers who hold post-Master’s degrees
      Strong leadership is evident at the district and school levels.

• The district’s strong sense of family fosters caring relationships among adults and between adults and students,
and strong support for teaching/learning from district and school administrators.

What would you consider to be your school system's greatest challenges?

• Continue the tradition of excellence in an era of reduced funding.

• Address the issues attendant to the increased incidence of high-risk behaviors among district students.

• Design and implement strategies to increase attention to the adverse impacts of low parent/community
aspirations for children.

• Advocate for adequate funding and seek additional funding sources to support quality education for all children.

• Continue to explore innovative strategies for effectively educating children of poverty.

How will you use the insights gained from this self-assessment to inform and enhance your quality assurance
and continuous improvement efforts?



• While the standards review process has validated many of the systems and processes in place in the district,
some gaps have been identified that can and will be strengthened.

• The standards review process has reinforced the value of participatory decision-making and the need to
consistently include district and school personnel in the decision-making/problem-solving process.

• The district will organize problem-solving teams, modeled after the district’s curriculum development teams, to
address the challenges identified through the standards review process, such as the prevalence of high-risk student
behaviors and low parent/community aspirations.

• The district will expand and strengthen its communication strategies, both internally and externally.




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                                                                                                                      Spartanburg County School District #3



                      Standards Assessment Report Summary
                                         Standards & Indicators                                                      Not Evident Emerging Operational Highly Functional
1. Vision & Purpose
         1.1 Establishes a vision and purpose for the system in collaboration with its stakeholders

         1.2 Communicates the system's vision and purpose to build stakeholder understanding and support

         1.3 Identifies system-wide goals and measures to advance the vision

         1.4 Develops and continuously maintains a profile of the system, its students, and the community
         1.5 Ensures that the system's vision and purpose guide the teaching and learning process and the
         strategic direction of schools, departments, and services
         1.6 Reviews its vision and purpose systematically and revises them when appropriate
2. Governance & Leadership
         2.1 Establishes and communicates policies and procedures that provide for the effective operation of
         the system
         2.2 Recognizes and preserves the executive, administrative, and leadership authority of the
         administrative head of the system
         2.3 Ensures compliance with applicable local, state, and federal laws, standards, and regulations
         2.4 Implements policies and procedures that provide for the orientation and training of the governing
         board
         2.5 Builds public support, secures sufficient resources, and acts as a steward of the system's resources
         2.6 Maintains access to legal counsel to advise or obtain information about legal requirements and
         obligations
         2.7 Maintains adequate insurance or equivalent resources to protect its financial stability and
         administrative operations
         2.8 Provides for systematic analysis and review of student performance and school and system
         effectiveness
         2.9 Creates and supports collaborative networks of stakeholders to support system programs
         2.10 Provides direction, assistance, and resources to align, support, and enhance all parts of the system
         in meeting organizational and student performance goals
         2.11 Provides internal and external stakeholders meaningful roles in the decision-making process that
         promote a culture of participation, responsibility, and ownership
         2.12 Assesses and addresses community expectations and stakeholder satisfaction

         2.13 Implements an evaluation system that provides for the professional growth of all personnel
3. Teaching & Learning
         3.1 Develops, articulates, and coordinates curriculum based on clearly- defined expectations for
         student learning, including essential knowledge and skills
         3.2 Establishes expectations and supports student engagement in the learning process, including
         opportunities for students to explore application of higher order thinking skills and investigate new
         approaches to applying their learning
         3.3 Ensures that system-wide curricular and instructional decisions are based on data and research at
         all levels
         3.4 Supports instruction that is research-based and reflective of best practice
         3.5 Supports a curriculum that challenges and meets the needs of each student, reflects a commitment
         to equity, and demonstrates an appreciation of diversity
         3.6 Allocates and protects instructional time to support student learning
         3.7 Maintains articulation among and between all levels of schooling to monitor student performance
         and ensure readiness for future schooling or employment
         3.8 Supports the implementation of interventions to help students meet expectations for student
         learning
         3.9 Maintains a system-wide climate that supports student learning

         3.10 Ensures that curriculum is reviewed and revised at regular intervals
        3.11 Coordinates and ensures ready access to instructional technology, information and media
        services, and materials needed for effective instruction
4. Documenting & Using Results
        4.1 Establishes and implements a comprehensive assessment system, aligned with the system's
        expectations for student learning, that yields information which is reliable, valid, and bias free
        4.2 Ensures that student assessment data are used to make decisions for continuous improvement of


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                                                                                                                   Spartanburg County School District #3


         teaching and learning
         4.3 Conducts a systematic analysis of instructional and organizational effectiveness, including support
         systems, and uses the results to improve student and system performance
         4.4 Provides a system of communication which uses a variety of methods to report student
         performance and system effectiveness to all stakeholders
         4.5 Uses comparison and trend data from comparable school systems to evaluate student performance
         and system effectiveness
         4.6 Demonstrates verifiable growth in student performance that is supported by multiple sources of
         evidence
         4.7 Maintains a secure, accurate, and complete student record system in accordance with state and
         federal regulations
5. Resource & Support Systems
         5.1 Establishes and implements processes to recruit, employ, retain, and mentor qualified professional
         and support staff to fulfill assigned roles and responsibilities
         5.2 Establishes and implements a process to assign professional and support staff based on system
         needs and staff qualifications as may be required by federal and state law and regulations (i.e.,
         professional preparation, ability, knowledge, and experience)
         5.3 Establishes and implements a process to design, evaluate, and improve professional development
         and ensures participation by all faculty and staff
         5.4 Ensures that staff are sufficient in number to meet the vision and purpose of the school system and
         to meet federal and state law and regulations, if applicable
         5.5 Engages in long-range budgetary planning and annually budgets sufficient resources to support its
         educational programs and to implement its plans for improvement
         5.6 Ensures that all financial transactions are safeguarded through proper budgetary procedures and
         audited accounting measures
         5.7 Maintains sites, facilities, services, and equipment to provide a safe, orderly, and healthy
         environment
         5.8 Establishes and implements written security and crisis management plans with appropriate training
         for stakeholders
         5.9 Implements processes and plans for maintaining and improving sites, facilities, and equipment
         5.10 Provides technology infrastructure and equipment that is up-to-date and sufficient to accomplish
         the system's goals
         5.11 Provides and coordinates support services that meet the health, counseling, nutrition, safety, co-
         curricular, transportation, and special learning needs of all students
         5.12 Provides student support services coordinated with the school, home, and community
6. Stakeholder Communications & Relationships
         6.1 Fosters collaboration with community stakeholders to support student learning

         6.2 Uses system-wide strategies to listen to and communicate with stakeholders

         6.3 Solicits the knowledge and skills of stakeholders to enhance the work of the system

         6.4 Communicates the expectations for student learning and goals for improvement to all stakeholders

         6.5 Provides information that is meaningful and useful to stakeholders
7. Commitment to Continuous Improvement
       7.1 Engages in a continuous process of improvement that articulates the vision and purpose the system
       is pursuing (Vision); maintains a rich and current description of students, their performance, system
       effectiveness, and the community (Profile); employs goals and interventions to improve student
       performance (Plan); and documents and uses the results to inform future improvement efforts (Results)
         7.2 Engages stakeholders in the processes of continuous improvement
         7.3 Ensures that each school's plan for continuous improvement is aligned with the system's vision and
         expectations for student learning
         7.4 Ensures that each school's plan for continuous improvement includes a focus on increasing
         learning for all students and closing gaps between current and expected student performance levels
         7.5 Provides research-based professional development for system and school personnel to help them
         achieve improvement goals
         7.6 Monitors and communicates the results of improvement efforts to stakeholders

         7.7 Evaluates and documents the effectiveness and impact of its continuous process of improvement
         7.8 Allocates and protects time for planning and engaging in continuous improvement efforts system-
         wide
         7.9 Provides direction and assistance to its schools and operational units to support their continuous
         improvement efforts




AdvancED Standards Assessment Report                                                                                                       Page 98 of 98

								
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