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Chattooga County Schools Soar on Cognia Review

Chattooga County Schools is not only recommended for reaccreditation, but the system was also commended for performances well above the average in a recent review by Cognia

Chattooga County Schools is not only recommended for reaccreditation, but the system was also commended for performances well above the average in a recent review by Cognia (formerly AdvancED).

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The nonprofit, nonpartisan organization conducts on-site and virtual reviews of school systems across the world for accreditation. Cognia defines continuous improvement as, “an embedded behavior rooted in an institution’s culture that constantly focuses on conditions, processes, and practices to improve teaching and learning.”

Accreditation is pivotal in leveraging education quality and continuous improvement.

A six-member team of educators from Cognia reviewed evidence, interviewed stakeholders, and attended a presentation by Jared Hosmer, Superintendent of Chattooga County Schools, during the three-day review visit on February 28th – March 2nd. During the review of system evidence and interviews, the Cognia team gained a broad understanding of the district’s quality and rated effectiveness of the Performance Standards based on three Domains: Leadership Capacity, Learning Capacity, and Resource Capacity.

The system’s final review report was announced on Thursday, April 21, 2022, and Chattooga County Schools earned a system IEQ (Index of Education Quality) score of 355.48. The maximum score is 400. This score is 72 points higher than the average score of 278-283 earned by other institutions that have undergone a Cognia review within the last five years.

Superintendent Hosmer stated, “Chattooga County Schools’ score of 355.48 on a 400-point scale is a testament to the work of our CCS School Board, leaders, teachers, support staff, parents, students, and our entire community. It makes me proud to work with such great people and in a great community.

The Cognia review team identified four themes that resonated with them throughout their visits with students, teachers, parents, community partners, and system leaders.

The first theme identified is that the system’s commitment to its vision and purpose is ingrained and embedded in the culture and reflects shared beliefs about teaching and learning. The review report states, “The team commends the system for carefully selecting these priorities and encourages continued success in achieving the strategic priorities.”  The team also reported that a parent proudly stated, “I appreciate the investment the district makes in my child.”

The second theme that the review team noted is that “the system implements processes and programs to identify and address the specialized needs of learners.” The team also noted that “ALL schools have a sensory room available that provides a therapeutic environment to help regulate, calm and focus the student.” The team revealed that a community member was impressed by the inclusiveness of the system and stated, “There is something for everyone.”

Another theme that emerged from the review was a focus on data-driven instruction within Chattooga CountySchools. The review team stated that “instruction is monitored and adjusted to meet individual learners’ needs…” and “its schools collect, analyze, and use data to guide school/system decisions related to student achievement and behavior.”

The fourth theme that was identified was that the system has a professional development plan that focuses on the performance of students and staff and the impact of educational programs.  In particular, “The professional learning structure is based on data-driven needs assessment and indicates a commitment to continual improvement.  Additionally, the team noted, “The active professional learning communities at the system and all schools also highlight the commitment the system and schools place on professional learning for all staff.”

The team commended the Chattooga County School System and its schools for genuine engagement in the continuous improvement process.

We appreciate everyone and the support our school system receives. We are proud of our 355.48 score.  

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