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OHS Accreditation Visit

Ottawa High School is committed to providing the best education possible to our student body.  Our staff is constantly looking at multiple sources of data including assessment scores, academic programming, graduation rates, transiency and attendance, as well as numerous other variables associated with the success of our school.  In the past the State of Kansas required schools to work through an external accreditation process, however, with the many changes taking place at the State level this requirement has been suspended indefinitely while they work to develop a statewide accreditation process.  Schools now have the ability to disregard the external review process for their betterment with no repercussions.  Ottawa USD 290 feels that this process is important to our continued growth and success which is why we have partnered with AdvancED to go through an external review of our entire district to gain a greater understanding of what we are doing well and what we need to improve upon.

All of our schools have been working on this process for well over a year now by launching our own internal review of the 5 AdvancED standards for quality which include a stable governance, management, and leadership, a coherent course of study, a reliable systems by which to assess students’ progress, instructors who have a clear understanding of what they aim to teach, how, and why, and access to the resources they need.  Last November parents and students were given the opportunity to go through the same review so that they could provide insight into our schools as well.  Now we are preparing for an external review of our schools by a 5 person team which includes persons from Las Vegas, NV, Hutchinson, KS, Atchison, KS, Clearwater, KS, and Nezperce, ID.

The process will begin on Monday, September 28, and conclude on Wednesday, September 30.  Monday will include a number of interviews with Dr. Stroh (Superintendent) and district principals.  Principals will then have about an hour to present information about their schools both positive and areas of need.  The review team will then begin interviews with board members, principals, teachers, parents, and community to round out the day.  On Tuesday the review team will begin by interviewing school improvement committees and then spend the next 6 hours in classrooms observing teachers and programs.  They will finish the day by debriefing with principals and school improvement teams regarding their observations.  Wednesday morning the group will schedule any follow up interviews needed and work to develop their final findings.  At 2:00 a final meeting with the superintendent will take place and a presentation of findings will take place during a special board meeting scheduled for Wednesday afternoon at 3:30 p.m.

If you are interested in the draft documents created by staff, parents, and students they will be available on our school’s website.  This process is instrumental in the improvement of our schools as we continue to search for ways in which we can provide more for our students.  Ottawa High School’s commitment to this process and the utilization of its findings will be discussed and shared with our community many times as we make changes as well as celebrate our successes! 

Dr. Ryan Cobbs
Ottawa High School