School system nears end of accreditation

PARKERSBURG – The Wood County School System is in the final steps of a multi-year process to become the first in the state to achieve AdvanceEd accreditation.

Superintendent Pat Law said an AdvanceEd team is in the county this week to review the work and hopefully recommend accreditation.

“A number of schools -high schools – are accredited through AdvanceEd. We will be the only district (in the state) accredited if they grant us,” Law said. “They try to look at the entire county and judge if this is a school system worthy. We consider it an honor.”

Law has been working for three years to implement the AdvanceEd academic accountability and accreditation program in Wood County Schools. The program uses five guiding principals – governance and leadership, teaching and assessing for learning, resources and support systems, and using results for continuous improvement – as its core.

Law said officials have been supplying the team with information about the school system for months. This week, members of the AdvanceEd accreditation team are visiting the school system. The accreditation team is a six-person team with three members from West Virginia, two from Michigan and one from Alabama.

“For the next several days they are going through the process; talking with various groups, administrators, principals and board members trying to get an understanding of what the school system is about,” Law said.

Today the team will be conducting site visits to schools.

Wednesday the team will meet with the board of education – during a special, noon meeting – to conduct an exit report.

“They will make a presentation on what their findings were,” Law said.

Law said officials will make recommendations for the school system and he’s hopeful they will recommend accreditation for the school system, making Wood County the first school system in the state to achieve accreditation.

“It will be a pretty big announcement for our school system if it comes about.”