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Accreditation

 

Cornerstone Christian Academy is accredited by the Association of Christian Schools nternational (ACSI) and Middle States Association Commission on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS).

 

 

The Value of Accreditation - Accreditation is a seal of quality on a school.  It is a visible sign that the school has attained and is accountable to adhering to institutional educational standards of quality.  It is also a verification that the school is committed to continuously pursuing excellence by engaging in strategic planning for improvement.  In the end, accreditation is authentication that we are who we say we are and we do what we say it is our mission to do.
 
Between May 2011 and March 2013 the school completed a rigorous self-study, identifying numerous strengths and many areas for improvement.  As a result of this broad-based and collaborative process that included trustees, administration, teachers, staff, students, and parents, ten school improvement  priorities were identified.
  1. Develop and implement tools to better assess student achievement of the school’s stated learning outcomes for academic excellence, spiritual maturity, and character development.
  2. Develop and implement a plan for curriculum evaluation, enhancement, and development in all subject areas and grade levels, aligning curriculum and curriculum maps/guides with the Pennsylvania Common Core Standards.
  3. Secure the necessary financial resources to not only fulfill but also enlarge the mission, programs, and services of an educational program of excellence.
  4. Invest in the school’s most valuable assets – teachers and staff – by committing to plan and support professional development opportunities that will improve student academic performance and spiritual development as well as meet individual employees’ needs.
  5. Improve student standardized test scores.
  6. Improve facility safety, security, cleanliness, energy-efficiency, exterior appearance, and overall maintenance administration.
  7. Engage parents more actively in the school, securing a greater commitment from them to the school’s mission, educational program, activities, and improvement priorities.
  8. Increase the school’s public exposure in the community, city, and region; marketing the school more intentionally for student recruitment and donor support.
  9. Fulfill the priorities of the Library, Media, and Technology plans; securing the services of a librarian and fully developing the library for instructional, research, study, and lending services, as well as providing the necessary technology infrastructure, tools and resources that will provide a 21st century education for students.
  10. Enhance membership on the Board of Trustees by initiating more effective measures for recruitment, training, involvement, and assessment of board members.  

These ten priorities form the basis of Cornerstone Christian Academy’s 2013 Continuous School Improvement Plan (CSIP).  The CSIP has been categorized into five areas, under which each of the identified priorities falls.  These five focal areas are:

Academic and Spiritual Development of Students

Staff Professional Development and Support       

Funding School Operations and Sustainability

Buildings and Grounds Stewardship

Governance and Organizational Leadership

The improvement plan has its foundation in student achievement and development, school improvement/effectiveness, and fulfillment of the school-wide expected student outcomes.  Furthermore, priority in the plan addresses the fiscal, personnel, resources, and time implications in relationship to the mission, vision, and educational philosophy of the school.  In conjunction with the President/CEO and school administrators, the committees of the Board of Trustees will be responsible for monitoring and reporting on the progress of the improvement plan, as well as keeping Cornerstone’s stakeholders informed.

 

CONTINUOUS SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PLAN – SUMMARY

GOALS AND PLANS FOR SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT

Academic and Spiritual Development of Students

Goal:  To provide a K-8th grade Christian education program of excellence that prepares    students who are grounded in faith and equipped with knowledge and skills to succeed in high school, college, and throughout life.

Plan:

  • Develop and implement tools to assess student achievement of the school’s stated learning outcomes.
  • Develop and implement a plan for curriculum evaluation, enhancement, and development in all subject areas, aligning curriculum and curriculum maps with the PA Common Core Standards.
  • Improve student standardized test scores and provide comparison data from neighboring schools and comparable Christian schools to evaluate the effectiveness of CCA’s academic program.
  • Fulfill the priorities of the Library, Media, and Technology plans; securing the services of a librarian and developing the library for instructional, research, study, and lending services, as well as providing the necessary technology infrastructure, tools, and resources that will provide a 21st century education for students.
  • Engage parents more actively in the school, securing a greater commitment from them to the school’s mission, programs, activities, and improvement priorities.
  • Enhance the weekly chapel program to reflect its importance as a time of worship and reverence.
  • Expand service programs and mission opportunities for students.
  • Introduce the study of a foreign language, i.e. Spanish.

Staff Professional Development and Support

Goal:  To invest in the school’s most valuable assets – teachers and staff – by committing to support professional development opportunities that will improve student academic performance and spiritual development as well as meet individual employees’ specific needs.

Plan:

  • Prepare a professional development plan for each teacher, administrator, and staff member.
  • Provide training and resources to assist teachers and administrators in becoming certified.
  • Provide teacher training in methods of developing a world-view approach to biblical integration into the curriculum.
  • Provide technology training for administrators, teachers, and staff, as well as up-to-date technology resources and tools.
  • Provide annual crisis management and First Aid training.
  • Implement a schedule for annual appraisals of administrators, teachers, and staff, including on-going teacher classroom observations.

Funding School Operations and Sustainability

Goal:  To secure the necessary financial resources to not only fulfill but also enlarge the mission, programs, and services of an educational program of excellence.  

Plan:

  • Prepare a plan for yearly recruitment of new students to increase student enrollment, including reaching out to a growing immigrant population.
  • Increase the school’s exposure in the city and region; marketing for student recruitment and donor support.
  • Secure a greater commitment from all Trustees to be more engaged in the yearly Fundraising Plan; helping to cultivate relationships with current donors and donor prospects.
  • Engage key constituents in developing a fundraising plan for long-term school sustainability, i.e. planned giving, endowment and donor-designated funding.
  • Develop additional means of funding school operations to supplement tuition and donor revenue.

Buildings and Grounds Stewardship

Goal:  To maintain facilities that are safe, secure, clean, energy efficient, and encouraging of academic excellence, as well as to plan and provide for capital improvements.

     Plan:

  • Hire a qualified Facilities Manager
  • Complete campus security upgrades; adding exterior cameras and intercom-controlled electronic door releases at all entry points.
  • Improve the exterior appearance by replacing the existing perimeter fencing.
  • Improve the outside play space, including resurfacing.
  • Provide for continuous evaluation of needs, following a short/mid/and long-range plan.
  • Improve the care of facilities, establishing a culture of pride among students and staff to be better stewards of school facilities, equipment, and supplies, as well as engaging in “green” efforts, i.e. recycling.

Governance and Organizational Leadership

Goal:  To enhance membership on the Board of Trustees by initiating more effective measures for recruitment, training, involvement, and assessment of board members.

Plan:

  • Establish a Trusteeship Committee for board recruitment, training, and assessment.
  • Increase the size of the board from 15 to 21 board members.
  • Involve Board members more meaningfully and regularly in committee responsibilities.
  • Establish an active Education Committee to work closely with school administrators on planning, implementing, and assessing the school’s academic priorities.
  • Provide a regular written update to Board members, to keep them better informed on school matters and activities.

Schedule a yearly all-day board retreat for group-building and vision casting.