School districts can self-assess their compliance with the Operating Standards for Ohio Schools through the following questions, drawn from the sections of Ohio Administrative Code which correspond most closely to the national Malcolm Baldrige Criteria for performance excellence.
Is an organization profile complete, identifying student groups, key stakeholders, strategic challenges and core values? Is a strategic plan in place which further defines strategic objectives, goals, and key measures? Do the strategic objectives address key community concerns and create value for students? Is dialogue with the community sufficient to build trust with the district, and ensure support for the strategic plan, including core values? Are goals in the strategic plan achievable, research-based, supported by benchmarks, and communicated throughout the schools and community? Will deployment of the strategic plan increase public support for the district? How do you know? (Suggested tool: Education Criteria for Performance Excellence, especially "core values" and "organizational profile"):
Are job descriptions aligned with the operating standards? Are owners identified for specific items in the administrative code, specific key measures (definition, benchmarks, results and trends), and specific key stakeholders? How many community members can the district reach through key stakeholder groups? Do they have meaningful roles with the district beyond levy support and fundraising? (Tool: Operating Standards for Ohio Schools, OAC 3301-35-01 through 3301-35-07)
Are student assessments timely, aligned to curriculum, and effectively used to improve student learning? Is the staff empowered (e.g. through training, communication, and resources) to appropriately support learning for each child, address parents' concerns, and promote improved student learning? Does the union contract support effective use of data in the classroom and other district goals? Do parent-teacher interaction and communication of performance measures increase community support for the district? (Suggested Tool: Charting New Frontiers: Creating High Performing Schools, NEA)
Are key performance measures for classified staff identified, baselined, benchmarked, integrated into job descriptions, and supported by the union contract? How are priorites (safety, student learning, and operational excellence) determined and deployed? Is the staff empowered (e.g. through training and communication) to achieve district goals? Does communication of performance measures increase community support for the district? (Suggested Tool: district performance audit--other district's audits may be on the web, e.g. Beavercreek)
Is the district aligned with a community consensus of the purpose of public education? Does the district present a clear value proposition which is supported by valid data that is accessible to its intended audience? Is communication with stakeholders regular and meaningful? (Suggested tool: Damon, Youth Charter)