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School Improvement

In order to affect long-lasting improvement in South Dakota schools, the SD DOE has created a responsive system intended to build the capacity of districts and schools to identify and address the diverse needs of students. To support districts and schools who have been identified for needing comprehensive or targeted support for improvement SD DOE believes:

  • IF we put into action a cohesive improvement process focused upon building success through responsive supports based on data,
  • THEN districts, schools, and stakeholders will meaningfully implement a success process focused on data-informed effective practices to improve education for all students,
  • AND all students will demonstrate growth in learning.

Identification of Schools

In accordance with ESSA, SD DOE annually designates schools for Comprehensive Support and Improvement, Targeted Support and Improvement, and Additional Targeted Support and Improvement. For more information, please see the SD DOE State ESSA Plan.

Designation Identification Criteria When is Designation? How Often?
Comprehensive Support & Improvement (CSI) Lowest-performing 5% of Title I schools, based on SPI
Public high schools with a graduation rate of less than 67%
Title I ATSI schools who do not exit within four years
SY 18-19 (based on SY 17-18 data)
After four years of not exiting ATSI, beginning SY 23-24
Annually
Targeted Support & Improvement (TSI) Public schools with a subgroup or its Gap group performing disproportionately below the performance of the all students group on all indicators over a period of three years SY 18-19 (based on three years’ worth of data) Annually
Additional Targeted Support & Improvement (ATSI) A TSI school with a subgroup or its Gap group performing no better on all indicators than the aggregate performance of the bottom 5% of Title I schools over a period of three years SY 18-19 (based on three years’ worth of data) Annually
  • Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI)

    The department has three methods of identifying schools CSI schools.

    Comprehensive Support and Improvement: Lowest 5% Title I The lowest-performing five percent of Title I schools are identified for Comprehensive Support using the results of the School Performance Index (SPI). The SPI returns a summative point rating for each school based on the point structures, as detailed in the tables below. SD DOE ranks separately Title I elementary and middle schools, and high schools, according to their overall SPI score; those five percent of Title I elementary and middle schools, and high schools, receiving the lowest overall SPI scores will be designated for Comprehensive Support under this category. Schools identified for Comprehensive Support will be designated for a period of four year to use interventions and strategies to improve the overall performance of their students.

    Comprehensive Support and Improvement: Graduation Rate SD DOE also examines the graduation rates of all public high schools in the state. Those public high schools that fail to graduate at least one-third of their students will be designated for Comprehensive Support.

    Comprehensive Support and Improvement: Chronic Title I ATSI SD DOE will identify for Comprehensive Support any Title I school designated for Additional Targeted Support and Intervention (ATSI) if the school has not met exit criteria after four years.

  • Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI)

    Any public school with a subgroup or its Gap group performing disproportionately below the performance of the all students group on all indicators over a period of three years.

  • Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI)

    A TSI school with a subgroup or its Gap group performing no better on all indicators than the aggregate performance of the bottom 5% of Title I schools over a period of three years.

pyramid
Exit Criteria

Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI)
In determining a CSI school’s eligibility to exit, the following criteria will be evaluated:

  1. The school no longer meets the definition of Comprehensive Support (i.e., no longer in the bottom five percent of SPI, graduation rate above 67 percent, or improved subgroup performance).
  2. The school’s performance on accountability indicators over the period of designation demonstrates a positive overall trajectory.
  3. The school has demonstrated improvement on the indicators of highest need, as agreed between the School Success Facilitator and the school, based upon the results of the comprehensive needs assessment conducted in the first year of designation.
Schools meeting the above as well as their interim targets towards long-term goals may petition SD DOE to exit the designation early.

Comprehensive Support schools failing to meet the exit criteria within four years will be required to re-evaluate and revise their School Success Action Plan by working with their Facilitator to conduct another comprehensive needs assessment during the fifth year of designation.



Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI), and Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI)
TSI and ATSI schools are designated for a period of two years to improve the performance of specific subgroups within their overall student population. In determining a school’s eligibility to exit, the following criteria will be evaluated:

  1. The school no longer meets the definition under which it was designated for Targeted or Additional Targeted Support and Improvement. The subgroup(s) which triggered the initial designation no longer performs disproportionately below the all student group based on three years of data.
  2. The performance of the subgroup(s), which triggered the initial designation, on accountability indicators over the period of designation demonstrates a positive overall trajectory.
  3. The performance of the school’s gap group on all indicators over the period of designation has not declined.
Schools meeting the above as well as their interim targets towards long-term goals may petition SD DOE to exit the designation early.

ATSI schools that are also Title I Schools and do not meet exit criteria within a four-year period will be designated Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI).

The School Success Framework

The SD DOE's School Success Framework is centered on four key components: Effective Leadership, Curriculum & Instruction, Talent Development, and Family, Culture & Climate.

student success framework

Effective leadership is the set of skills and actions used to promote and ensure 1) student success 2) teacher effectiveness, and 3) management of operations and resources.

Curriculum, the academic content taught, is the knowledge and skills that shape teaching, learning, and assessment. Instruction, the purposeful direction of the learning process, refers to the practices and strategies teachers use to impact student learning.

Talent development enhances and supports building the capacity of the entire school staff to impact student outcomes. The entire school staff is defined as anyone who is employed by the school from teaching staff to custodians to paraprofessionals.

A student-centered learning environment is characterized by a climate and culture that supports school improvement, student achievement, and positive social, emotional, and character development. Families and the community make key contributions to student success, especially when schools work to build meaningful and culturally respectful partnerships.

For more information on the School Success Framework see the System of School Success Handbook.

The School Success Process
data process

Set the Direction

During the Set the Direction phase of the Success Process schools and districts may do the following:
  • Conduct District Self-Reflection
  • Assemble Leadership Teams
  • Set School Success Mission, Goals and Theory of Action
  • Create an Open Mindset with a Culture of Candor
  • Inventory Resources
  • Compile Preliminary Data Sources List
  • Build a Shared Understanding of the School Success Framework and Process
  • Establish a Communication Network among SD DOE, District, Schools and Stakeholders
Identify Needs

A thorough and systematic needs assessment reveals strengths and weakness and provides the direction schools need to focus their resources. A truly comprehensive needs analysis considers both qualitative and quantitative data. Prioritization of needs and root cause analysis are vital processes in the need analysis phase.

The SD DOE has created a resource for schools to utilize in their needs analysis process, the South Dakota Comprehensive Needs Assessment (SDCNA), which is directly aligned with the School Success Process and Framework. For more information see the SDCNA document. (provide link)

Action Plan

Based on the needs and root cause analyses, schools create action plans that incorporate effective practices that have been proven to produce positive student outcomes. Those needs and causes that have been identified and prioritized should be used to set student-focused goals which drive the action planning process. The School Success Action Plan includes strategies (effective practices), milestones (implementation indicators), and actions/tasks (steps to the milestone). CSI, TSI/ATSI designated schools are required to submit district-approved actions plans to SD DOE.

Implement and Progress Review

Fidelity of implementation is critical to successful execution of school improvement action plans. Additionally, as the plan is being put into action, there should be continual communication among those involved to regularly examine progress of the interventions. Leadership teams should engage in ongoing progress review of the actions being implemented. A system for reporting and collecting data should be in put place during this phase. Teams should be meeting on at least a monthly basis to discuss progress, identify successes and challenges, provide supports and adjust course if necessary.

Self-Reflect and Adjust

At the end of the first year of implementation, schools should conduct a data analysis to analyze implementation and performance data and adjust milestones as necessary. Additionally, data will be analyzed and communicated to SD DOE in order to evaluate the effective use of resources and responsive supports.

If a TSI/ATSI school is re-designated the district will need to determine if an examination of data sources and a root cause analysis is needed, in order to create a new or update the School Success Action Plan.

If necessary, CSI schools should adjust their School Success Action Plans based on the implementation and performance data analysis. Schools should complete the comprehensive needs assessment process at a minimum of every five years.

For more information on the School Success Process see the System of School Success Handbook.

Requirements
Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI)
CSI image

Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI), and Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI)

Districts with a TSI/ATSI designated school are required to submit to SD DOE a district-approved action plan based on a needs analysis.

Targeted Support
Supports

School Success Launch
This introductory meeting will inform newly-identified schools and their districts about the designation criteria, school improvement requirements, and the roles and responsibilities of schools, districts and SD DOE. School Success Facilitators will also be introduced. Other topics to be covered include: SDCNA Framework and Process and resources available to South Dakota schools in improvement.

School Success Boost
This meeting will occur annually post designation. This will be an opportunity for reflection on and adjustment to school improvement efforts, as well as time for LEAs and schools to review available resources and network with other districts and SD DOE staff. Other topics will be determined based on the identified needs of South Dakota schools in improvement.

1003 Funds

1003 funds are available for schools who have been identified as needing Comprehensive and Targeted Support and Improvement in order to plan school success activities as detailed in South Dakota’s School Success Handbook. Funds availability is evaluated year to year based on resource availability and the number of designated schools.

Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI)

  • School Success Facilitator
    Each CSI school will be provided a SD DOE-Certified School Success Facilitator by the SD DOE. Facilitators have the knowledge and expertise to lead schools in the South Dakota School Support and Improvement Process. Their role is to propel the Leadership Team’s thinking forward, facilitate challenging conversations, support the Leadership Team in school improvement efforts, and hold the Leadership Team accountable for achieving improvement goals.
  • School Success Facilitator Advisor
    The School Success Facilitator Advisor will provide mentorship and assistance to School Success Facilitators. Initial emphasis will be place on supporting Facilitators and CSI schools through the SDCNA process. Additionally, they will monitor the effectiveness of the SDCNA process.
  • District Technical Advisors
    Based on SD DOE analysis of district data, LEAs that have multiple schools identified as Targeted and/or Comprehensive Support may be assigned a Technical Advisor (TA) to guide districts in supporting schools within the district. Technical Advisors work with the administration on all district-level decisions being made regarding curriculum, staff assignments, budgetary requests, professional development, and other interventions. Technical Advisors are also responsible for regularly communicating with SD DOE, School Success Facilitators provided to schools in the district, and with district governance, which may include school boards.
Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI), and Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI)
  • Targeted Support Option 1
    This is for districts that have the resources and expertise to conduct a needs analysis, develop, implement and monitor an action plan on their own, with minimal SD DOE support.
    • must attend School Success Launch and Boost
    • option to attend regional workshops
    • may conduct a needs analysis themselves or utilize an external vendor to conduct the needs
    • may use a needs analysis framework of their choosing, including the SDCNA
  • Targeted Support Option 2
    This is for districts that need moderate SD DOE support to conduct a needs analysis; develop, implement and monitor an action plan on their own. These districts’ primary focus might be: Action Plan development, specific analysis processes such as root cause analysis, and/or best practices regarding a variety of school improvement topics.
    • must attend School Success Launch and Boost
    • complete TSI/ATSI District Needs Analysis Survey to inform regional workshop and collaboration sessions
    • first preference to attend regional School Success Framework and Process best practices workshops
    • first preference to attend regional SDCNA Framework and Process component workshops
    • first preference to attend regional workshops focused on designation indicators and subgroups
    • first preference to attend regional collaborative sessions and workshops based on identified district needs
    • may conduct a needs analysis themselves or utilize an external vendor to conduct the needs
    • may use a needs analysis framework of their choosing, including the SDCNA
Timelines
Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI)
December 2018 Schools and Districts Notified of CSI School Designations
SET DIRECTION
January 2019 School Success Launch
Jan 2019 –
June 2019
District Self-Reflection, Build Leadership Teams, Gain an Understanding of the School Success Process, Framework and SDCNA
IDENTIFY NEEDS & ACTION PLAN
July 2019-
June 2020
Conduct SDCNA
Create School Success Action Plan
2019 School Success Boost
May 2020 Submit School Success Action Plan to SD DOE
IMPLEMENT & REVIEW PROGRESS
July 2020-
June 2023
Implement and Progress Review School Success Action Plan
2020 School Success Boost
SELF-REFLECT & ADJUST
May 2021 Annual Data Analysis and Self-Reflection
Adjust School Success Action Plan if Necessary
Fall 2023 Exit and Re-designation Notifications


Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI), and Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI)
December 2018 Districts Notified of TSI/ATSI School Designations
SET DIRECTION
January 2019 School Success Launch
Jan 2019 –
June 2019
Build Leadership Team, Plan and Prepare for School Success Process and Needs Analysis
IDENTIFY NEEDS & ACTION PLAN
July 2019-
June 2020
Conduct Needs Analysis
Create Action Plan
Fall 2019 School Success Boost
May 2020 Submit District-Approved Action Plan to SD DOE
IMPLEMENT & PROGRESS REVIEW
July 2020-June 2021 Implement and Monitor Action Plan
2020 School Success Boost
SELF-REFLECT & ADJUST
May 2021 Annual Data Analysis
Fall 2021 Exit or,
Re-designation: Submit New District-Approved Action Plan to SD DOE