Moving from school improvement to school achievement
Dear Friends:

The Standard Bearer Schools (SBS) process engages the entire school community, examines data on student achievement and organizational conditions, and identifies and addresses root causes of underperformance.
What results do schools implementing the SBS process achieve? They move from school improvement to school achievement. For the first time since 2010, Belmont Elementary School (in Prince William County Public Schools, Virginia) is recognized as a School of Excellence.
Belmont Elementary serves a school population which is 83% low-income and includes many first generation American students. Using the SBS process, the school community--parents, staff, and new leaders--examined data and developed an improvement strategy that built on the school's strengths.
Over the course of just one year, the school focused planning for teachers, increased the frequency and focus of teacher feedback, built the capacity of teacher leaders, opened a Parent Resource Center, maximized division support, intensified math and literacy professional learning for teachers, and directly taught below-grade-level readers with an "all hands on deck" approach.
The results are dramatic:
  • Student pass rates on Virginia's assessments, Standards of Learning, increased 12 percentage points in mathematics, 13 in English, 17 in history and social science, and 38 in science.
  • Belmont earned full accreditation from the Commonwealth of Virginia.
  • Both student engagement and the alignment of classroom instruction to rigorous standards increased markedly.
These results speak to the power of the Standard Bearer Schools process and the talent and commitment of the Belmont and Prince William educational community.
To learn how to become a Standard Bearer School, contact CTAC at 617-423-1444 or
Best Regards,
William J. Slotnik
Founder and Executive Director
Community Training and Assistance Center (CTAC)