KANSAS 21st CENTURY ACCREDITATION MODEL
Among the primary functions of the Kansas State Board of Education is the accreditation of schools, a process that provides official recognition of the school as having met a defined set of standards. The current accreditation standards in Kansas are set through Quality Performance Accreditation (QPA), which relies on a combination of the school’s performance on state assessments and its ability to meet 11 Quality Assurances. The system was developed in 1992 and was modified in 2005.
At the end of 2010, the Kansas Education Commission made a series of recommendations related to education in the state. One of them was for the State Board of Education to review the current accreditation process. In May 2011, the State Board adopted new goals and objectives that included a review of the accreditation system for Kansas schools. The new model the State Board of Education is considering maintains an emphasis on the results that schools achieve, but places a larger emphasis on the systems and practices that schools use to gain their results.
The new model uses the 21st Century themes of: Relationships, Relevance, Responsive Culture, Results and Rigor (five R’s) as a way to focus on the quality characteristics of a school system.
KANSAS MUTLI-TIER SYSTEM OF SUPPORTS (MTSS)
Multi-Tier System of Supports (MTSS) provides an integrated systemic approach to meeting the needs of all students and using resources in the most effective and efficient way—facilitating each child’s success. MTSS is a continuum of increasingly intense, research-based interventions provided to students that help them learn by responding to their academic and/or behavioral needs. The outcome is to ensure that each Kansas student achieves to high standards.
TEACHING IN KANSAS COMMISSION
The Teaching in Kansas Commission focuses on the teacher shortage, including the preparation, recruitment, retention and licensure of Kansas teachers. The commission develops recommendations for addressing the critical need to develop, retain, and support Kansas teachers.
COLLEGE AND CAREER READINESS
Specifically to address workforce development, career/education preparation, and student acquisition of 21st century skills, Kansas is improving access to Career and Technical Education by implementing integration of Academics and CTE Standards and requiring career planning and awareness.
KANSAS TECHNOLOGY RICH CLASSROOMS (TRC) PROJECT
Kansas’s competitive Enhancing Education through Technology Grant project is a catalyst for promoting innovative 21st century teaching and learning opportunities incorporating 21st century skills. The project clearly focuses on content driven, project-based, technology-rich instructional practices in classrooms that are student-centered with intensive professional development support for participating teachers.
KANSAS EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP COMMISSION
The Kansas Educational Leadership Commission, a group sponsored by the Governor’s office, Kansas State Department of Education, Kansas State Board of Regents (Higher Education), and funded through a Wallace Foundation Grant, addresses the increasing need for visionary and effective school leaders. The commission develops recommendations regarding Professional Development and Educational Leadership Preparation.
KANSAS LEARNING FIRST ALLIANCE (KLFA)
The Kansas Learning First Alliance is a partnership of 28 leading educational associations with a common purpose: to unite the education community to improve our outstanding public education system, pre-K through higher education, to empower each Kansan to succeed in the diverse, interdependent world of the 21st century. The Kansas Learning First Alliance (KLFA) focuses its work around improving student achievement, strengthening professional development, and engaging the public.
KANSAS CAREER PIPELINE (KCP)
The Kansas Career Pipeline (KCP), a non-profit organization with the mission of engaging students in using the state’s educational system to reach their career and life goals, is an online collaborative effort among various state agencies and many representatives from business and industry. The KCP provides many resources for schools and industry to utilize so that students make informed career choices through increased career awareness. The initiative also incorporates specific state-related workforce development needs.
KANSAS ACADEMY OF MATHEMATICS AND SCIENCE (KAMS)
An initiative through the Kansas Board of Regents, the Kansas Academy of Mathematics and Science (KAMS) is a two-year residential academy for 11th and 12th grade students talented in mathematics and science. KAMS students enroll in college courses taught by the faculty of a post-secondary educational institution. Over the course of their time in the Academy, students earn a high school diploma and college credits that meet the requirements for an associate of arts or associate of science degree.
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