The students and staff of Yarmouth Consolidated Memorial High School were honoured today, Dec. 12, as Tri-County Regional School Board’s first provincially accredited school. The accreditation designation culminates five years of work by the high school to set higher standards, increase student achievement and improve the school’s overall performance. “Yarmouth Consolidated Memorial High School can be very proud of achieving this distinction,” said Education Minister Karen Casey. “I want to congratulate the staff, students, the school advisory committee and the entire school community, who put so much effort into a school-improvement strategy that is clearly making a very good school even better.” Yarmouth Consolidated Memorial High School was among the first schools selected in 2003 to pilot the Nova Scotia School Accreditation Program, a school-improvement process identified as a priority in Learning For Life II, the province’s multi-year plan for education. There are 308 schools working on school accreditation plans. Yarmouth High is the seventh school in the province to be presented with its accreditation plaque. “The Nova Scotia School Accreditation Program ensures that every school is continually improving, offering quality programs and ensuring that the academic needs of all students are being met,” said Ms. Casey. Yarmouth High focused its improvement efforts on increasing overall student achievement in all subjects at Grade 10 and improving respect and rapport between students and their teachers. It also took positive steps to improve communication between teachers and parents. “We worked very hard at creating a school atmosphere where students feel good about learning, and bringing staff and students, as well as the school community, closer together,” said principal Brent Jamieson. “It is really about breaking down barriers. “The Nova Scotia School Accreditation process has been, and continues to be, a very positive experience for our school. It helped us create a professional learning community, with the end result being increased student success and achievement.” The Nova Scotia School Accreditation Program requires every school meet a standard of excellence based on goals that are specific and strategic, measurable, attainable, results-based and timely. Under the program, schools establish internal review teams to collect and evaluate data to identify strengths, and areas needing improvement. Based on the areas needing improvement, schools develop goals and work toward meeting them through a five-year school-improvement plan. The plan is examined by an external review team of independent educators and administrators who visit each school before approving it. Schools implement the improvement plan, and provide annual updates to school advisory councils. An accreditation team returns to the school after four years to assess progress. Schools receive accreditation after they show progress toward improvement-plan goals.
A Cabinet Subcommittee is to be appointed to provide guidance to implement various programmes within the year 2016 to protect Sri Lanka’s identity.It has been observed that it is essential to implement suitable programmes to have long lasting peace and reconciliation among the various communities living in Sri Lanka. The Government said that although, each community has its own unique cultural and religious characteristics, they should be able to live in the country as well as abroad as one nation, and for this purpose the mindset of all Sri Lankans must change. Accordingly, a proposal made by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, to appoint a Cabinet Subcommittee to provide guidance to implement various programmes within the year 2016 to ensure the Sri Lankan identity, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers. (Colombo Gazette)