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PD's Position of Strength

Following the Southern Association of Independent Schools’ accreditation visit to campus last fall, the committee delivered top marks to Providence Day in many of the school’s highest-priority areas. During their presentation to faculty and staff, committee members recognized Providence Day as a national leader.

The committee’s commendations and recommendations will help guide teaching and learning for the next five years, until the next accreditation cycle. Here are some highlights from the committee’s findings.

ENHANCING PD PASSPORT SKILLS

Providence Day School's faculty, staff, and administration have collaborated to create a TK-12 curricular framework that includes skills, character dispositions, and necessary knowledge. Known as the PD Passport, this framework allows Providence Day School to promote the skills, content, connections, and global awareness for students to find success in a globalized society. Launched in 2015, the PD Passport is one of the commitments of the school's umbrella of social responsibility and its holistic portrait of a graduate.

The committee commended:

  • PD’s aligned scope and sequence, as shown through the school’s TK-12th grade deep dive on the global curriculum;
  • The aspirational framework of the portrait of a graduate, which supports the school's commitment to the global education program.

BOLSTERING WELL-BEING

Through the school's self-study, led by Lee Tappy and Pam Heacock, student and faculty inclusivity was identified as a major component of the school's vision, specifically with a focus on supporting the whole person. Three categories of cultural learning, social-emotional learning, and well-being organized the school's goals in this area. Through the vision group's work, safety and well-being became the overarching goal for the school.

The committee commended the school for:

  • Fully supporting social and emotional needs in the community, including adding new counseling support to the Upper School;
  • Dedicating resources to support students with learning differences.

EQUITY & INCLUSION

The school's recent self-study identified promoting equity and inclusion as a significant component of the school's mission and vision. PD has focused on goals including supporting and serving diverse faculty/staff and students; allocating additional staff to diversity work; prioritizing recruiting and retaining faculty/staff and students of color; and encouraging the development of diverse teaching styles. 

The visiting team commended:

  • Creating opportunities for all stakeholders to participate in diversity and inclusion opportunities;
  • Committing to recruiting and retaining personnel (faculty, administrators, staff) of color.

OTHER COMMENDATIONS

The committee cited these areas as highlights from their visit and study of PD.

  • Exceptional level of community engagement, care, and collaboration, which are foundational to sustaining the mission of Providence Day School;
  • Thoughtful and thorough use of a variety of assessments to gain feedback from and pulse of constituents;
  • Strong faculty commitment to academic excellence, relationships, and continuous improvement;
  • Commendable risk management policies that assess and mitigate risks of all on-campus, domestic, and international experiences;
  • Exceptional commitment to service and community (including the Students of Service SOS program);
  • Robust commitment of time, resources, and people to professional development;
  • Strong fiscal responsibility, allocation of resources, and strategic financial planning; 
  • Investment in personnel to support the global program.

CONCLUSIONS

As PD approaches its 50th anniversary, it does so from a position of exceptional strength, committee members reported. They specifically recognized PD for being regarded as one of the finest in Charlotte, known especially for assuring that students become global citizens and for its commitment to diversity. The school’s action plan, when realized, will provide alignment of the school's efforts, particularly in equity and inclusion, emotional safety, and Passport skills. Look for more news around all of these areas as the school proceeds with its strategic planning process in the coming years. 

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