Questar III Board Of Education: Case Study

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In September, the Questar III Board of Education adopted a policy to begin a program assessment and evaluation process for the BOCES. It is important to consistently and continually review our programs and services to ensure we are providing the best possible service to our students and districts, but also to ensure that we offer those services and products at the lowest cost.

Our staff is fulfilling needs that we, nor our districts, could have anticipated years ago. After all, changing conditions have created changing needs. Because of this, we cannot assume that current delivery models are sustainable or even appropriate. Given the uncertainties and growing pressures facing education – we must take a closer look at our practices and use
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In keeping with state regulations, Questar III continues to move special education students from a more restrictive environment to a less restrictive environment as they are able. In recent years, our 4:1:2 program (4 students, 1 teacher and 2 aides) had become a default placement for many. And, it became costly and unsustainable.

In response, we collected data, reviewed the program and had an honest conversation with our superintendents. As a result, we moved some students into 6:1:2 programs, reducing the number of 4:1:2 classes. The student that needs the small class environment and high support is still placed in a 4:1:2 today, but we continue working to move students from the most to least restrictive environments.

This movement not only allowed Questar III to better serve students, but also to better account for actual costs. As a result, many program rates decreased or remained the same this year due to a better accounting.

Per board policy, reviews will use logic models, rubrics, and various research-based tools to analyze data collected and implementation review. The process culminates in a report containing findings and where necessary, recommendations and/or plans for
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Undoubtedly, our success as an organization is dependent upon strong, effective and cost-effective programs for our students and districts. Our services could not flourish, however, without strong human resources as well. Our human resources department has done an excellent job of hiring the right people and training them well. Being able to effectively manage our staff is what will make us truly sustainable. This fulfills the third initiative of our strategic plan- Leading, Serving, and Adapting to Support Sustainability.

As the BOCES moves through this process of reviewing our programs and services, I will make periodic reports to the Board of Education on the status of evaluations, and will share findings, recommendations and plans of action. These reviews will help Questar III to make better decisions in regards to budgeting, staffing, capital improvements, and program delivery to ensure we are providing the best possible service to our students and

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