Accountability Plan and Report

The improvement process is communicated through an annual School Accountability Plan that sets forth improvement goals, linkage to strategic goals, background analysis, key measures of success, approach (methodology), deployment (activities), and data collection requirements. The results of improvement efforts are communicated through an annual School Accountability Report.

The following information is provided to assist schools in the development of annual accountability plans and reports which (1) provide necessary information to guide school improvement, (2) clearly report on the results of the school improvement efforts, and (3) build the school's case for charter renewal.

School improvement planning begins with the development of a strategic plan that clearly states the mission and vision of the school and sets forth measurable student performance standards. Strategic goals are developed through a process utilizing external and internal analysis of the school's position in the market place and reflect macro three to five year initiatives designed to accomplish the school's mission. The internal analyses are derived from a periodic needs assessment and organized according to the six content categories of the Education Criteria for Performance Excellence: Leadership; Strategic Planning; Student, Stakeholder, and Market Focus; Measurement, Analysis, and Knowledge Management; Faculty and Staff Focus; and Process Management. Strategic goals set forth the long term growth and improvement efforts to be undertaken by the school.

The annual accountability plan clearly states each annual goal and provides specific information regarding background analysis, key indicators of success, the approach the school will use to achieve the goal, the action that will be taken to deploy the approach, and the data that will be collected and analyzed to determine the results of the improvement effort. It is strongly recommended that school improvement goals be stated in the following format:

Strategic Goal: Each annual goal should be linked to a strategic goal. The linkage is essential to focus the entire energy of the school on the identified need.

Background Analysis: The background analysis provides the rationale for the goal and the initial data on which action is based. The rationale describes why the goal was chosen. The initial data provide the information necessary to specifically direct action and a baseline against which to assess improvement efforts.

Goal Statement: The goal statement should answer the question: What is to be improved? In developing the goal statement one should also ask: Is the statement clear and understandable? and Is the desired improvement measurable?

Key Indicators of Success: Key indicators statements describe macro measures that answer the questions: Did the actions taken in regard to the goal lead to improvement? How much improvement occurred?

Approach: The approach is a statement of the program, methodology, or techniques that will be used to accomplish the improvement. The statement answers the questions: What program, methodology, or techniques will be introduced or improved? Why is it expected that this program, methodology, or technique will lead to improvement?

Deployment: Deployment statements should answer the questions such as: What activities will take place to implement the approach and when will these activities take place. For example: What staffing level will be required? What resources will be required? What staff training will be necessary? What is the time table for deployment? How will information and concerns be communicated?

Data Collection Plan: The data collection plan answers the questions: What data needs to be collected to determine that key measures have been met? When will data be collected? How will these key indicators be analyzed? Who will analyze the data? What benchmarks will be used to track the deployment?

Results: The results section answers the questions: What were the key results? What do they tell us about the improvement plan? What are the next steps that need to be taken to continue improvement in the area? An example of a well written school improvement goal is provided to assist with goal development. School Improvement Goal Example

The annual Accountability Report provides a complete picture of the school. It begins with a school profile that summarizes the operation and leadership of the school, describes opportunities for improvement determined through the Baldrige based needs assessment, provides the strategic plan derived from the external and internal environmental scans, states annual improvement goals in detail, and tracks numerous school statistics. Wherever possible, cumulative results are presented to provide a longitudinal view. Analyses of student outcomes should be consistent with the measures specified in the accountability plan. Accountability Reports for 2012-13 can be accessed by clicking on the school name. Bruce Guadalupe Community School - Capitol West Academy - Milwaukee College Preparatory School - Milwaukee Scholars Charter School - School for Early Development and Achievement - Seeds of Health Elementary - Tenor High School - Urban Day School - Veritas High School - Woodlands School - Young Leaders Academy.

The Office will assist schools with the tasks of obtaining, organization, analyzing, and reporting of information. The Office will conduct annual satisfaction surveys with parents, students, and the school staff. The information obtain through these surveys will be analyzed and provided to the schools for use in the school improvement effort. The reporting of financial data must follow the guidelines set for in Financial Reporting Details.

Accountability plans can be amended throughout the school year if additional school improvement efforts are identified. It is to the school's advantage to document all efforts. Accountability Plans and Reports will be reviewed annually by the Office and evaluated according to the criteria presented in Evaluation of Accountability Reports (15). Plans and/or reports deemed incomplete or unsatisfactory will be returned to the school for further work.