|12-3-14 DOE Announce Equivalency Waiver Process|
GSCS on Twitter earlier today re QSAC Equivalency Waivers for High Performing Districts -
Educ Commr just announced QSAC equivalency waiver process for high performing districts at state board of ed mtg
Charles Sampson retweeted you -
GSCS before Senate Education Committee in March 2014: GSCS President Charles Sampson “…an extension of the QSAC timelines beyond three years, particularly for school districts already designated as high performing and a thorough examination that builds upon the recommendations of the 2011-2012 Education Task Force would be advantageous to schools across the state…”and, GSCS resident-Elect Jorden Schiff “…Although this is important work, it does consume many hours of local staff’s time and the county office’s time, as well. I am concerned that the frequency, every three years, is not necessary for “High Performing Districts…” To read fuller excerpts of their testimonies, click here on More…
GSCS on QSAC: Excerpts re Testimony to the Senate Education Committee
Charles B. Sampson, Superintendent of Schools, Freehold Regional High School District
….Given this significant overlap, an extension of the QSAC timelines beyond three years, particularly for school districts already designated as high performing and a thorough examination that builds upon the recommendations of the 2011-2012 Education Task Force would be advantageous to schools across the state.
Indeed with the advent of an entirely new system of student assessment with PARCC, it might be time to rethink QSAC entirely to identify core metrics as indicators of organizational health and effectiveness that focus on student outputs. With the rapid expanse of NJSMART, introduction of new performance reports and new systems of evaluating and monitoring staff and student achievement, QSAC, even with the revisions adopted in 2012, has become a dated tool that fails to most effectively gauge the range of avenues that school systems may provide to engender student success. The extensions called for in S135 and S721 [7 year rotation rather than 3 year rotation] would allow for the opportunity to explore ways to make QSAC more effective in assisting school board districts in focusing on student outcomes.
Milton Chen stated that modern learning necessitates the utilization of modern tools. The compliance checklist nature of QSAC ignores more authentic indicators of a successful school system and overly burdens districts that have repeatedly performed at the highest levels. As we reset the playing field to incorporate the new mandates as established by state and federal authorities, we should look also to develop a new tool that recognizes the distinctions and nuanced differences amongst public schools while providing metrics of growth not found in other reports already provided by school districts in other reporting requirements. I am heartened that there seems the possibility on some real movement regarding the QSAC process and would welcome the opportunity to contribute to the determination of a more modern tool to support and validate modern learning.
GSCS on QSAC – Excerpts re Testimony to the Senate Education Committee
Jorden Schiff, Ed.D, Superintendent of Schools, Hillsborough Township Board of Education
Chairwoman Ruiz and members of the Senate Education Committee, it is my honor and pleasure to give testimony today regarding the New Jersey Quality Single Accountability Continuum, commonly known as QSAC…Although this is important work, it does consume many hours of local staff’s time and the county office’s time, as well. I am concerned that the frequency, every three years, is not necessary for “High Performing Districts.” If a district performs well through the QSAC monitoring process, then the district should be able to be monitored every seven years, rather than every three years. The time that local districts spend every three years preparing for monitoring could be better spent focusing on the teaching and learning process…There is a bill, however, that is currently making its way through the legislative process that will positively address this concern. Senator Bateman’s bill, S135, permits high performing school districts to be monitored by the DOE every seven years rather than every three years. ...”
Star Ledger - State to offer QSAC waivers to high-performing districts
TRENTON —In an effort to eliminate burdensome regulations, New Jersey is making its high-performing school districts eligible for a streamlined state review, the Department of Education announced Wednesday.
Schools that satisfy 80-100 percent of the quality performance indicators in the state’s Quality Single Accountability Continuum will be able to submit a document instead of undergoing a full QSAC review every three years.
Those schools would now go through the full QSAC review only once every six years, according to the Department of Education.
The change is aimed at easing the compliance burden on school districts and allowing the state to focus its resources on helping underperforming schools, officials said.
"No one wants to spend valuable education time on paperwork that is not necessary,” said David Hespe, acting education commissioner. “The state needs to focus its resources on supporting district efforts to help students achieve at greater levels."
The New Jersey School Board’s Association commended the Department of Education for the change.
Local school boards found value in the monitoring system but indicated in surveys that it diverted time and resources away from supervision of instruction, said Lawrence Feinsod, NJSBA’s executive director.
The New Jersey Association of School Administrators also praised the new review process.
“Kudos to NJDOE,” said Richard Bozza, the association’s executive director.
Under QSAC, public school districts are evaluated in five component areas: Instruction and program, fiscal management, government, personnel and operations.
The review includes a self-evaluation by the district, a review by the executive county superintendent and then a final determination by the commissioner.
Now, high-performing schools will have to provide evidence that they remain high performing, based on 24 metrics developed by the departments. Those include proficiency rates, graduation rates, timely administration of administrator contracts and compliance with the annual budget process.
If a district remains high performing according to those metrics it will receive a three-year extension before needing another full QSAC review, creating a six-year gap between full reviews.
The change begins with the 204 districts set for upcoming QSAC reviews and should affect about half of those districts, Hespe said.
Garden State Coalition of Schools