SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PLANNING

CONTACT :: Alessandro Montanari, Program Administrator

NOTE :: Various file formats are used on this page that may require download. If larger than 1mb, it will take longer to download. For instructions or more information, please visit our download page.


School Improvement Planning is more than a plan, it is a framework for change. The plan, itself, is simply a map that identifies the school’s destination and requires both decision-making and action from a variety of stakeholders to reach that destination in the most direct route. As Dr. Sam Redding wrote in The Mega System Handbook, “[h]igh-functioning schools and schools cited for their effectiveness do the right things, do them continuously, and always look for ways to improve. Schools that fail with comprehensive school reform do so not for lack of resources, other than time, but for want of determination and internal discipline.” North Carolina Schools are required to submit a School Improvement Plan (SIP) to the local board of education for review and approval is required by federal and state regulations, Public Law 107-110, the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, section 1101 et seq., and Article 8B School Based Management & Accountability Program; to improve student performance. The plan shall remain in effect for no more than two years (e.g. FY 2016 to FY 2018), however; the plan can be amended as often as is necessary or appropriate.

Please note, districts are required to submit plans annually to NCDPI on behalf of schools identified as Priority or Focus status under the NC Flexibility Request (March, 2015) .

In planning for the School improvement plan development, please consider the following North Carolina regulations under Ā§115C-105.27 of School Based Management & Accountability Program:

  1. School staff and parent representatives shall constitute a school improvement team and the team shall be elected by their respective groups by secret ballot.
  2. Parents shall be elected by parents of children enrolled in the school in an election by either the parent/teacher organization or the largest organization of parents formed specifically for the election.
  3. Parents, serving on school improvement teams shall reflect the racial and socioeconomic composition of the students enrolled in the school and shall NOT be members of the building-level staff.
  4. Team meetings shall be held at convenient times to assure substantial parent participation.
  5. All school improvement plans shall be data-driven.
  6. Shall include a duty-free lunch period for every teacher.
  7. The principal shall submit plan to the local board of education only if the proposed school improvement plan has the approval of a majority of the staff who voted on the plan.

PEP Update (New)
On June 2, 2015, the General Assembly enacted Session Law 2015-46, An Act to Repeal Personal Education Plans and Modify Transition Plans. S.L. 2015-46 modified G.S. 115C-105.41, 115C-83.7(c), and 115C-83.9(a). The link to the session law can be found here (pdf, 315kb).

There have been questions regarding these changes and implications for Personalized Education Plans (PEP). An explanation of the changes made by this law and option how schools can continue to support students at risk of academic failure are provided in the PDF below. Due to these changes in the law, the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) will provide guidance through the lens of a Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS).


School Improvement Planning Implementation Guide
The Guide offers a one-stop-shop for guidance on conducting school improvement planning. Sections include a legal overview, best-practices-based guiding principles, and a step-by-step process for planning. Several appendices are provided to offer additional details in areas where school improvement teams may wish for more information.
(pdf, 1.6mb)   LAST UPDATED: JULY 22, 2016


School Improvement Management Tool (Updated April 1, 2016)
In 2011, NCDPI began utilizing a web-based school improvement management tool, NCStar. NCStar is powered by IndistarĀ® and was developed by the Academic Development Institutes (ADI) with the firm belief that district and school improvement is best accomplished when directed by people, working in teams, closest to the students. Through NCStar, district or school teams are guided through a process of charting improvement and managing the continuous improvement process. NCStar builds accountability as well as helps schools track their improvement plans. NCStar requires a "culture of candor" in which district and school personnel talk openly and honestly about their professional practices that contribute to student learning. Since school improvement is such a unique process for each school, NCStar contains over 100 research based effective practices (indicators) and allows schools flexibility to personalize their school improvement plans to meet their distinct needs. More information about NCStar including a series of How to Videos may be found HERE.