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January 16, 2014

Danvers High no longer faces accreditation 'warning'

DANVERS — A regional accreditation agency that sets standards for schools has lifted the “warning” status on Danvers High School.

New England Association of Schools and Colleges Inc.’s Commission on Public Schools Director Janet Allison wrote that in October, the Committee on Public Secondary Schools continued the school’s accreditation “and voted unanimously to remove the school from warning for the Standards for Accreditation on Curriculum and Community Resources for Learning.”

The decision followed the completion of the $70 million high school renovation project last fall.

The NEASC committee “commended the completion of the school building project, which fully supports the school’s core values and beliefs, its educational programs and services, and assures students have multiple opportunities to achieve the 21st century learning expectations, and the voters of Danvers for their support of the construction project.”

”The building project and the accreditation piece really is a true example of the team effort,” Superintendent Lisa Dana said.

Dana said Assistant Superintendent/High School Principal Sue Ambrozavitch has worked on improving the school’s culture. Peggy McElhinney, the high school’s curriculum director, worked on moving the school’s curriculum forward. Assistant Principal Mark Strout, former Holten Richmond Middle School Principal Michael Cali and Business Manager Keith Taverna led the building project.

In the end, these efforts came together, Dana said.

”So, we have this beautiful building, we have the technology resources now, and at the same time, Peggy and Sue are working on the pieces of making sure that we are taking full advantage of this new building,” Dana said.

The committee was also impressed with the school’s efforts to improve its “core values.”

”We are happy and proud about that,” said School Committee Chairman Eric Crane of the warning notice’s removal. While it may be driven by the building project, “they also pointed out issues within the building,” he said.

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