Middle States Accreditation
St. Margaret of Cortona School is fully accredited by the Middle States Commission on Elementary Schools. This process requires an in-depth self study of the programs offered, student needs, academic programs, extra-curricular activities and our place in the Riverdale community. Accreditation means that St. Margaret’s has met the standards set by the Commission on Elementary Education for:
Defining appropriate educational goals and providing programs to achieve them;
Maintaining a qualified faculty and an effective school organization;
- Assessing outcomes of school experiences and controlling quality of educational programs;
Responding to concerns of parents and needs of the school community;
Providing for the continuity of its programs and planning for the future;
Describing with accuracy the content of its services and programs;
We recently received a response from the Middle States Commission on Elementary Schools on the Sixth Year Progress Report submitted by our school in February 2008. This report was made on our progress regarding the strategic goals we set for St. Margaret’s School at the time of our initial accreditation in 2002.
Progress Report Analysis is excerpted below:
STRATEGIC GOALS COVERED IN THIS REPORT:
- To continue to integrate technology within all subject areas
- To extend student-centered instructional methods that have been defined in order to improve student achievement
COMMENTS ON PROCESS USED TO COMPLETE REPORT:
This report represents a concerted effort by the administration and faculty to enhance their educational program. It is a reflective document that focuses on improving areas that will be most beneficial to the entire scholastic community.
COMMENTS ON PROGRESS OF STRATEGIC GOAL IMPLEMENTATION:
Through clearly delineating and implementing their goals, St. Margaret of Cortona School has challenged their students to become proactive, productive learners. In the realm of technology they are tapping into the vast educational resources afforded by technological tools. Accomplishments in this area encompass: integrating computer applications into classrooms through interactive lessons and Power Point Presentations; enhancing research capabilities, improving word processing skills; and coordinating technology-based assignments with the computer instructor. On-going staff development has been a key factor in the actualization of their technological aspirations. Next, student-centered learning has been encouraged through Literature Circles, enrichment opportunities, learning centers and utilization of specific websites for independent research.
COMMENTS ON NEW STRATEGIC GOALS FOR THE NEXT THREE YEARS:
The future will continue to focus on the technological sphere including administrative tasks and computer applications in the classroom as well as the library-media center. New directions slated for enhancement of their educational program include: developing a School Advisory Board; establishing an effective Advancement and Marketing Plan; instituting a Preventative School Maintenance Plan; and providing professional development in the areas of differentiated instruction, critical thinking and integrated language arts skills.
COMMENTS ON SCHOOL STATUS:
St. Margaret of Cortona School has recently experienced a change in both the administration of the school and the parish. Both the principal and pastor are in the process of learning the culture of the scholastic and parish communities and assessing their unique needs.
GENERAL COMMENTS ON THE OVERALL SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT EFFORTS
St. Margaret of Cortona School provides their students a firm foundation in the Catholic faith and offers them a viable means to realize academic achievement. The diligent administration and teaching staff accept the challenge of furnishing value-centered education steeped in Christian tradition. They engage children in a variety of learning experiences through a developmentally appropriate curriculum. This empowers their pupils to actualize their maximum potential in the spiritual, scholastic, social, adn physical domains. Students’ talents outside the parameters of the classroom are cultivated through a wide specturm of extracurricular activities.