Happy February, and, for those invested in the local sports scene go Patriots!
A quiet, but significant, moment for Belmont Day will occur this Monday, February 4. We will welcome members of the AISNE Membership Committee for the five-year check-in on the recommendations the school received in 2013 through the re-accreditation process. The AISNE accreditation process for member schools is a thorough and robust one. A full year self-study, co-led by Betty Chu Pryor in the 2012-2013 school year, preceded the accreditation visit. The three-day onsite visit resulted in a series of thoughtful recommendations to help ensure that the school is delivering on the educational promise it makes to each family enrolled.
One unique element of the 2013 recommendations is that I was a part of the visiting team that made them. I had the pleasure of re-accrediting the school I would later have the great pleasure to begin leading in 2016. There are very few, if any, heads of school who have had the privilege of responding to the recommendations that they, themselves, wrote. In retrospect, there are a few times I have wanted to have a frank conversation with my 2013 self, but by and large, I am grateful to him and the entire AISNE team for helping to guide our community forward as these recommendations have.
The written responses to each of the recommendations are available on the BDSG Parent Site (to access password protected content, you must log in using the guest email address email@example.com; the password can be found inside your school directory) or in hard copy in the Gallery for those who are interested. The document details some of our work over the past five years at BDS.
Have a great weekend, everyone. And Beat LA!!
2013 AISNE Recommendations
- The Visiting Team recommends that the Board and Head of School utilize the results of the master planning process to determine specific facilities priorities and initiate a capital campaign to raise the necessary resources to achieve them.
- The Visiting Team recommends that the Board and Head outline and implement action to increase the representation of people of color on the Board and in the administration, faculty, and staff at Belmont Day. As part of the strategies, consideration should be given to the resources necessary to initiate and sustain this effort, the time frame required for achieving the outlined goals, and clarity about who holds accountability for making progress.
- The Visiting Team recommends that the academic administration finalize and communicate the process for curriculum documentation, strand review, and assessment and define the administrative and faculty leadership that will sustain an ongoing effort in this area.
- The Visiting Team recommends that the administration establish clear and consistent communication procedures that ensure that the faculty and staff understand the processes for decision making with regard to school-wide initiatives that require their participation. Specific attention should be given to articulating the faculty and staff’s roles in guiding and concluding such work.
- The Visiting Team recommends that the Board and Head initiate a review of the Statement of Purpose with an eye toward achieving more succinct phrasing and incorporating language connected to the significant change when grades seven and eight were added to the school and a Middle School division was established.
- The Visiting Team recommends that the Head of School and administrative team closely monitor the implementation of new and emerging evaluation systems for all constituent groups in the professional community to ensure that these practices are understood, become fully operational and are sustainable.
- The Visiting Team recommends that the administration and faculty address the areas in which the school’s schedule compromises the cohesion of both the academic program and the consistency of the students’ school day with particular attention to schedule challenges in the Middle School.
- The Visiting Team recommends that the Head of School, Assistant Head and the Division Directors, in consultation with the faculty, assess the allocation and use of faculty meeting time to maximize the capacity to address expressed needs for division meeting time and opportunities to consider the and pre-k through 8th grade vertical curriculum. Once this assessment is completed, the administration should consider altering time allocation to ensure that the expressed needs are addressed.
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