District and School Accountability

District Review Documentation

Prior to 2008, the Office of Educational Quality and Accountability (EQA), an independent sister agency of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE), had lead responsibility for performing district reviews. By legislation effective August 14, 2008, the Massachusetts Legislature created a Center for District and School Accountability (CDSA) within ESE. See Mass. Gen. Laws. c. 15, § 55A. CDSA now has the function of reviewing school districts.

Reports and materials related to EQA reviews are included here; those for CDSA reviews will be posted as they occur. The first CDSA report, of the Fall River Public Schools, was published in March 2009.

Districts declared underperforming by a vote of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education before April 27, 2010, are classified as Level 4 districts and operate under Accelerated Improvement Plans to address systematic challenges. Districts with Level 4 schools are also classified as Level 4 districts and may be required by the Department to develop Accelerated Improvement Plans. (See the Department's guidance for Level 4 districts. for more information). Accelerated Improvement Plans are frequently updated by the district; as such, they may evolve over the course of a school year. The Department-approved plans are posted to this website.

The implementation and effectiveness of the strategies outlined in the plans is reviewed on a regular basis by an accountability monitor representing CDSA. In turn, the monitor documents the progress the district is making toward benchmarks identified by the district's leadership team in the form of quarterly and summative monitoring reports. The reports can be accessed by selecting the letter of the first name of the district from the links above.

Current Documents

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2017-18 Targeted District Review Protocol
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2017-18 District Self-Assessment
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2017-18 Comprehensive District Review Protocol
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District Standards & Indicators
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2017-18 ODRM Observation Tool

Earlier Documents

2012-2013 District Reviews

The Center for District and School Accountability (CDSA) conducted 17 standard district reviews in 2012-13.

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2012-13 Standard District Review Protocol

2011-2012 District Reviews

The Center for District and School Accountability (CDSA) conducted 20 standard district reviews in 2011-12.

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2011-12 Standard District Review Protocol

2010-2011 District Reviews

The Center for District and School Accountability (CDSA) conducted 23 district reviews in 2010-11. It conducted 3 Level 4 reviews, 5 standard district reviews, and 9 reviews of District Systems and Practices Addressing the Differentiated Needs of Low-Income Students. In 3 districts, additionally, it conducted standard district reviews combined with low-income reviews: the standard review reports and low-income reports were published separately for 2 of those districts, and in one document for a 3rd.

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2010-11 Level 4 Review Protocol (with financial addendum)
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2010-11 Level 3 Review Protocol
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2010-11 Level 3 Low-Income Review Protocol
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2010-11 Differentiated Needs Review Protocol (focusing on students in poverty)

2009-2010 District Reviews

The Center for District and School Accountability (CDSA) conducted 18 district reviews in 2009-10. It conducted one Level 4 review, six Level 3 reviews, nine reviews of District Systems and Practices Addressing the Differentiated Needs of English Language Learners (LEP students), and two combined Level 3 and LEP reviews.

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2009-10 Level 4 Review Protocol
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2009-10 Level 3 Review Protocol
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2009-10 Level 3 Review Protocol with LEP Addendum
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2009-10 Differentiated Needs Review Protocol (focusing on students with limited English proficiency)

2008-2009 District Reviews

Fifteen district reviews were conducted in 2008-09. In addition to the Fall River Public Schools review, eight District Plan for School Intervention (DPSI) reviews and six reviews of District Systems and Practices Addressing the Differentiated Needs of All Students were conducted.

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Protocol for DPSI Reviews
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Protocol for Differentiated Needs Reviews

2003-2008 District Reviews

Between 2003 and 2008, the former Office of Educational Quality and Accountability (EQA) performed district reviews. The Educational Management Audit Council (EMAC), the governing body of EQA, was required to report on the activities and findings of the agency each fiscal year. The below reports discuss the operations of the EMAC and the EQA for FY03 through FY08.

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Overview of the Office of Educational Quality and Accountability (EQA) & Descriptions of 2003-08 EQA Reports & the Examination Process
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EQA Standards
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2008 EQA Annual Report
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2007 EQA Annual Report
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