Kansas State Department of Education

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Commissioner's Monthly Message

Kansas leads the world in the success of each student.


Kansas Education Systems Accreditation

The Kansas State Board of Education in June adopted the Kansas Education Systems Accreditation (KESA) as the state’s new accreditation model.

Accreditation is a process of measuring whether Kansas schools are meeting the standards set forth by the Kansas State Board of Education for delivering quality education to your child.

It has been more than 20 years since the accreditation model has changed. In fact, the old accreditation model, Quality Performance Accreditation (QPA), was developed in 1992. It was time for a change. QPA was geared toward how students did on a given test on a given day. KESA is more than a set of tests — it will help prepare your child for the future and help make sure every school has effective educators and the proper student services in place. KESA will focus on the whole child, as opposed to how a child does on a test.

What we have termed the “five Rs” will serve as the framework for the new model — relationships, relevance, responsive culture, rigor and results. Districts will use the five Rs to evaluate themselves and organize their efforts based on the goals they want to achieve.

The major changes to the new accreditation model include:

  • A systems approach rather than a building approach. Instead of each building being accredited, the entire district will be accredited.
  • An outside validation team made up of K-12 educators and postsecondary professionals will be checking in on and assisting districts with their efforts.
  • It will be a five-year review cycle instead of a yearly review cycle.

The state board is expected to approve the final regulations in the spring of 2017, and the first year of full implementation will begin in the summer of 2017.

We are excited about this new accreditation process and believe it will be instrumental in obtaining the board’s vision for education: Kansas leads the world in the success of each student.

Together, Kansans Can!


Dr. Randy Watson, Kansas Commissioner of Education photo and Signature block

Kansas Commissioner of Education Dr. Randy Watson shares a message about the five outcomes.

February 2016: Individual Plan of Study (IPS) | March 2016: Social/emotional growth | April 2016: Kindergarten Readiness 

May 2016: Graduation Rates | June 2016: Postsecondary Completion/Attendance | July 2016: Accreditation

 August 2016: Assessments | November 2016: The Vision, Past 12 Months | January 2017: What's Next?

 February 2017: Teacher Voices | March/April 2017: Business Engagement


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