Eastern board of education discusses school evaluation

Potential change in state legislature could delay state QSAC evaluation

The Eastern Camden County Regional School District Board of Education met for a virtual session on Dec. 16, discussing numerous school items and the upcoming state evaluation of the district.

Director of Academic Programs and Student Performance Kristin Borda gave a presentation to the board and members of the public watching at home, explaining the process of the state Quality Single Accountability Continuum.

“The QSAC process is a comprehensive school evaluation that is normally scheduled every three years for schools,” she said.

According to Borda, there are five key areas evaluated through the process, including instruction and program; governance; fiscal management; personnel; and operations. Each of those has six to 14 indicators.

In recent years, Eastern has received several waivers because of its designation as a high-performing district, Borda said during the meeting. In its assessment this school year, she added, some data typically used in compiling a QSAC score might not be weighed due to the way the 2019-2020 school year ended.

“Most of the documentation comes from the prior school year,” Borda explained. “But since last school year was anything but a typical school year, state assessment data like from the NJSLA test, Student Growth Objectives data for teachers and administrators and attendance data may be used from prior years and reviewed for compliance and potentially used in our QSAC score.”

Borda said the district is now receiving conflicting information regarding what factors will be used in compiling its score.

Regardless of that, the district must nonetheless observe the timeline in following through with the QSAC process. According to Borda, the district has been gathering documentation in recent months to show compliance with all the indicators in the five key areas.

A self-assessment by the district resulted in full credit for all indicators of the evaluation, which will now be sent to the state Department of Education. A virtual visit will be scheduled for the second half of the school year, as there are no in-person visits permitted due to COVID-19.

There is the potential for high-performing districts to have this year’s NJQSAC evaluation delayed until the 2023-2024 school year, according to Borda. But due to discussion in the state legislature, nothing has been confirmed, so Eastern has prepared and sent its materials.

The board’s next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 5, at 5 p.m. for a reorganization session.

 

In other news:

  • The board of education authorized the sale of 33 solar renewable energy credits earned in November at a price of $225 each, a total of $7,425.
  • Sierra Feeney was acknowledged as Eastern Regional’s Scholar of the Month for December 2020.