Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Accreditation


Stone Memorial High School

Tennessee School Improvement
Planning Process (TSIPP)
For Accreditation Through SACS/CASI


TEMPLATE 3.4.a:  Organizational Practices                                                                                                                       

Template 3.4.a: Organizational Practices
 (Rubric Indicators 3.7and 3.8)

Current Organizational Practices

processes increase the
opportunity for success
in teaching and learning
at all schools.

Organizational practices
and processes promote
the effective time-on-task
for all students.)

School provides
continuous professional
development for school leaders.

School is organized to be
proactive in addressing issues that
might impede teaching and

School is organized to engage
the parents and community in
providing extended learning
opportunities for children.

Evidence of Practice (State in definitive/tangible terms)

New teachers are required to attend an orientation meeting at the Board of Education to familiarize them with policies and procedures. 

New teachers, as well as 2nd and 3rd year teachers, are assigned a mentor within their buildings. 

SMHS is on a block schedule, which allows teachers to implement a variety of teaching strategies. 

SMHS has limited classroom interruptions. 

The Cumberland County Board of Education along with
SMHS administration
supplies teachers and
administration with a vast
array of professional
development opportunities.
Beth Billingsley
is leading a staff
development every Tuesday on utilizing technology in the classroom. 
Administration, teachers and staff are meeting regularly to work on the School Improvement Plan. 

The administration at SMHS conducts monthly faculty and staff meetings to discuss current issues ways to improve teaching and learning. 

SMHS has an active Parent Teacher Student Organization (PTSO). 

The SMHS 9th grade academy engages in numerous parental contacts and involvement.

Guidance counselors organize a yearly college night to discuss colleges and financial aid options with the students and parents. 

Is the current practice research-based?






Is it a principle & practice of high-performing schools?






Has the current practice been effective or ineffective?

This is the first year that SMHS has implemented a mentoring program of this magnitude.  We will assess the results at the end of the current year.





What data source(s) do you have that support your answer? (identify all applicable sources)

Personnel files/records, anecdotal records, and rehire recommendations

Formal and informal

Personnel Files

Discipline records, state report card, personnel files and evaluation records

Documentation of meetings and parent contacts

Evidence of effectiveness or ineffectiveness (State in terms of quantifiable improvement)

Because SMHS is a new school, we are still determining the effectiveness of our programs.

Evaluation data, discipline records, test scores

Improvement in academic environment

Discipline records indicate
consistency amongst all students. The
number of students violating basic
classroom and school rules have decreased.

More parental involvement

Evidence of equitable school support for this practice

All new teachers are assigned a mentor. 

All teachers work together to help resolve discipline issues of common students.  The SMHS 9th grade academy teachers meet twice per week to discuss students while other teachers communicate before and/or after school.

All faculty, staff, and administration must participate in professional development. 

All SMHS personnel follow county-wide discipline plan.

All parents and community member have to opportunity to contribute to SMHS.

Next Step (changes or continuations)

Administration will conduct formal observations for all new teachers in the mentoring program.

Teachers will participate in ongoing professional development to learn effective techniques for teaching on a block schedule. 

Continue staff development opportunities

Continue limitations of intercom
interruptions. Use student hall passes
effectively. Emphasize bell-to-bell instruction.

Continue strong parental
involvement to support all students’ success.


TEMPLATE 3.4.b:  Organizational Gap Analysis

Setting priorities is one way to narrow a school’s improvement focus.  As we know, we have more needs than we have resources.  Priority needs can be identified through a Gap Analysis.  The process will identify the discrepancy, or the gap, between the current state – “What Is” –which is identified in your practices – and the desired future state – “What Ought To Be” – which is found in the rubric.  Completing Template 3.4.b (the gap analysis) should help school team members discover “What Ought To Be.” 

Completion of the gap analysis should enable the School Leadership Team to answer the equity and adequacy questions relative to organizational practices, also to be recorded in Template 3.4.b.

Template 3.4.b: Organizational Gap Analysis

Organizational Gap Analysis – Narrative Response Required

“What is” The Current Use of:  TIME, MONEY, PERSONNEL And OTHER RESOURCES 
(How are we currently allocating our time, money, personnel and other resources and building capacity around understanding and implementing high quality organizational practices?)

  • TIME


  • Teachers use daily instructional time for collaboration, clubs, student assessment and records, and parent contacts
  • SMHS is currently on the 4x4 block schedule.
  • SMHS has scheduled monthly administration and faculty representative advisory meetings to determine any areas of need.
  • Monthly faculty meetings are held for feedback and information between all faculty, staff and the administration.
  • Each month we have specially scheduled days for club and activity meetings to allow students the opportunity to involve in a variety of activities.


  • The PTSO raises money through membership dues and fundraisers.
  • Band and Athletic booster clubs raise money through a variety of fundraisers to support their respective organizations. 
  • All clubs generate their own funds through membership dues and fundraisers.
  • Scholarships are funded by various community organizations to benefit graduating seniors. 
  • The student council sponsors a Homecoming Carnival and other activities to raise money for participating clubs, classes, and athletic teams.
  • As a school-wide fundraiser, SMHS students sold “Smart Cards” this year to raise money for the school library and a club or team of their choice.
  • BEP pool money is spent by a committee vote of members of the administration and teacher/staff representative according to school-wide goals.


  • Many faculty members are encouraged attend PTSO meetings and be actively involved with the organization. 
  • Some faculty members work during non-school hours at the local community college, which supports a dual enrollment program with SMHS.


  • Students serve on a variety of clubs such as Beta, Future Farmers of America, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Math, Science-Fiction, Interact, Renaissance, Young Republicans, Young Democrats, Photography, Student Council and the Chess club among others. 


“What Ought to Be” – How Should we be Using Our:  TIME, MONEY, PERSONNEL And OTHER RESOURCES
(How should we be allocating our time, money, personnel and other resources and building capacity around understanding and implementing high quality organizational practices?)

  • TIME


  • Need additional time for teacher communication and collaboration to improve and develop best practices.
  • Teachers need time with the special education teachers to collaborate on meeting special needs of those students.


  • Need additional funds to support the implementation of best practices. 


  • Need a Math Coach
  • Need a Literacy Coach
  • Need a Graduation Coach


  • Need additional vocational classes and room for these classes to appeal to the interests of students.
  • Need more academic classrooms.
  • Need better web site to inform all stakeholders about SMHS.

Equity and Adequacy:

Are we providing equity and adequacy to all of our teachers?
No.  Equal financial resources are not provided for all teachers. 

Are we targeting funds and resources effectively to meet the needs of all of our teachers in being effective with all their students? Yes, but additional funds are needed. 

Based on the data, are we accurately meeting the needs of all students in our school?
We are making good progress, but we still have work to do in the areas of communication and graduation.  Our stakeholders need more information to ensure their relationship with school is a strong one.  With this communication, we will also foster an atmosphere that encourages our students to graduate on time with their peers and become life-long, productive members of a global society.

TEMPLATE 3.4.c:  Organization Summary Questions

The following summary questions are related to organization.  They are designed as a culminating activity for your self-analysis, focus questions discussions, and findings, regarding this area. 
Template 3.4.c: Organization Summary Questions
 (Rubric Indicator 3.8)

Organization Summary Questions- Narrative Response Required

What are our major strengths and how do we know?
Our administration is effective and well organized.  They encourage teacher and staff input regarding the organization of the school.  Ideas are then refined, and when possible implemented.  Our administration requires all new teachers to attend orientation to familiarize and have knowledge about policies and procedures.  New teachers, as well as second and third year teachers are assigned a mentor.  All staff members are given several opportunities for staff development throughout the year.

Other strengths include a strong parent/teacher/student organization.  The SMHS 9th Grade Academy engages in numerous parental contacts and encourages parental/student involvement.  Our Guidance staff conducts meetings throughout the year to inform parents and students of career/college options as well as financial aid issues. 

Stone Memorial High School is also on a block schedule, which allows teachers to implement a variety of teaching strategies.  This has limited classroom interruptions. 

Student discipline is dealt with consistently and fairly. Our staff believes that behavior issues be dealt with before they become a problem.  9th grade academy teachers meet twice weekly to discuss these issues common to students.  Other teachers communicate before and after school. 

SMHS major strengths have been identified through surveys and discussions with staff. 













Organization Summary Questions- Narrative Response Required

What are our major challenges and how do we know. (These should be stated as organizational practice challenges identified in the templates above, that could be a cause of the prioritized needs identified in component A vast majority of our teachers enjoy teaching on the block schedule.  It has allowed them to use a variety of teaching strategies.  The administration has had concerns that some teachers may use the time to lecture and give the students the rest of the time to complete homework without a lot of discussion or interaction.  Other challenges continue to be parental involvement and improved graduation rates.  These challenges were identified through observation and discussions with staff.








Organization Summary Questions- Narrative Response Required

How will we address our challenges?  
We attempted to address the block schedule issue by instituting a modified block schedule.  This was not as effective as block scheduling and did not address student needs effectively.  There was less teaching time, and more interruptions. 

Our parental involvement issues are being addressed by consistent parent contact and increased opportunities for parental involvement in activities such as College/Career Fairs, Open House, an increasingly informative school web site, and a Homecoming Carnival. 

To help improve the graduation rate, SMHS will increase to communicate efforts with parents, students, and each other to identify and form intervention strategies to help these at-risk students.  This increased communication will serve our stakeholders best and empower them with needed information to encourage our students to make a best effort.  This effort will be enhanced by faculty and staff that, through an enthusiastic atmosphere, encourage all students to graduate on time and become active and productive members of a global society.