Bibb County's accreditation was in jeopardy just a few years ago, but a report released Friday shows an improving school system.
The district earned 342.79 on a scale of 100 to 400 points on its five-year review from accrediting agency AdvancED, according to the official report. A team visited 13 Bibb schools and interviewed 233 stakeholders from Oct. 1-4.
“That’s an amazing score, to be quite truthful. I’m very proud for our folks," school Superintendent Curtis Jones said during a board retreat at Hutchings College and Career Academy on Friday. “When we got ready to start this, I was just hoping to get average. We have really done well.”
The report didn't list any areas as needing improvement, the lowest category. Four areas were identified as "emerging," 14 met expectations, and 12 exceeded expectations.
"It does speak to the quality of leadership and the exceptional skills of this staff," board member Wanda West said. "You can almost mentally see the steps being unfolded.”
The AdvancED team praised Bibb County for having a strategic plan that aligns resources with mission, and for its stakeholder engagement and support services. The reviewers asked the district to improve on student access to individualized learning methods and to increase student engagement with technology.
"While there are pockets of excellence within which rich and challenging lessons are occurring, a high level of rigor and an environment of high expectations were not found in all classrooms," the report states.
Lori Rodgers, assistant superintendent of district effectiveness and federal programs , said the district had already started working on those areas when the team visited in October.
AdvancED put the Bibb district on accreditation warning after a review in May 2013. Problems were cited in the areas of governance and leadership, teaching and assessing for learning, and resources and support systems, and the district was given two years to show improvement, according to previous Telegraph articles. Board members addressed the issues, and AdvancED updated the district’s status to “accredited” in July 2015.
"Compelling evidence of the system’s commitment to a culture of accountability in support of students was found at both the district and school levels," according to the new report. "District leadership’s equally strong commitment to strategic planning and continuous improvement ensures that staff and stakeholders are focusing their efforts and energies in a consistent, student-centered direction. Those efforts have produced increases in a variety of measures of student achievement, perhaps most notably the on-time graduation rate."
To view the full report, go to http://bit.ly/2GF3eTm.