Wednesday, May 9, 2018

NEASC Press Release

NEASC affirms Burlington High School’s approach to high-quality teaching and learning

BURLINGTON, MA - Lauding Burlington High School’s alignment of core values around school culture and student character as well as the teaching staff’s camaraderie and commitment to quality curriculum, the New England Association of Schools and Colleges has voted unanimously to award Burlington High School continued accreditation.

“The accreditation, for us, really confirms the results of the introspective analysis our faculty and administrators conducted over the past 12 months,” said Superintendent Eric Conti. “The findings of our self-study, coupled with recommendations of the Committee on Public Secondary Schools visiting team, will assist us in developing priorities for further improvements in the school and our never-ending pursuit of excellence.”

He said the faculty and staff should be recognized for the incredible amount of work they put in over the past year, and all in an effort to improve every aspect of teaching and learning for students and teachers alike.

“We conducted an internal examination of our adherence to the seven standards that the Commission has established. Burlington High School underwent an extensive, rigorous self-study involving the participation of faculty, administrators, staff, students, community members, and school committee members.”

The site visit involved a committee of professional educators from across New England who analyzed the school’s educational approach and independently validated the implementation of the NEASC standards.

“The visiting team spent four days at Burlington High School interviewing stakeholders, observing classrooms, and learning about the operations of the school,” noted Assistant Superintendent Patrick Larkin. “It was a lot of work for all involved.”

NEASC’s review team commended the faculty and staff in a number of areas:

  • The efforts and willingness exhibited by the teachers to create, to revise, and to share curriculum maps; formally, informally, and during the summer, making them accessible and visible across departments and to parents
  • The teachers' use of informal and personal time to collaborate with their colleagues and share ideas, lessons, and assessments
  • The teachers' sincere interest in pursuing professional growth and exploring
    application of best practice research
  • The consistency of community support and resources to ensure that students are
    engaged in academic and co-curricular activities
  • The development of pockets of strong practice consistent with the school's 21st-century learning expectations
  • The consistency of funding for clubs and co-curricular activities that enrich students' learning and allow students to expand their interests and prepare for post-secondary opportunities.
“NEASC’s perspective and analysis is important to us,” said Principal Mark Sullivan. “They had many commendations that validated the work our school has engaged in over the last several years. The different commendations highlighted the high quality, professional teachers that are educating our children and the support in which the town of Burlington provides our schools.”

Mr. Sullivan said  NEASC has provided recommendations that they believe we should prioritize, in an effort to better align with their standards. This “follow up phase”, begins upon receipt of the approved report. “Burlington High School, in our efforts of continuous school improvement will review, plan, and implement the various recommendations, which are relative to our adherence to the established standards.” Mr. Sullivan said.  “In addition, different recommendations will be reflected in our Planning for Success Plan. Progress reports are required by NEASC at the one, two and five-year marks following the visit. In anticipation of these progress reports, the professional staff and administrators will begin a follow-up program to review the self-study findings and the visiting team report to establish the order in which recommendations will be carried out.”

The links below will provide you with the visiting team report, the accreditation letter from NEASC, and our Planning for Success Plan:

The New England Association of School and Colleges is a voluntary membership organization of more than 2,000 public and independent schools, colleges and universities, and vocational, technical, and career institutions. Of these, approximately 630 schools have been accredited through the Association's Commission on Public Schools. The Association works with individual schools to improve the quality of education through a continuous process of evaluation and Accreditation.

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