ODA Gets Their Report Card


This December, all the students got report cards and now the school is getting one too. FCIS is visiting our campus for the accreditation of our school. You may be wondering what this is and why it matters.

The FCIS (Florida Council of Independent Schools) was founded in 1954 as an organization devoted to ensuring the standard of Florida’s independent schools. Schools within the association undergo a review every five years to show financial stability and to measure a school’s exemplary education. FCIS created an accreditation process to evaluate the criteria each school must meet. This process helps a school improve because the school takes the feedback to see where they need to improve. For example if a school has a strong curriculum in math but a weak science department, FCIS may suggest a strengthening of the science department.

The reviewers give commendations, praise on what the school is doing well, or they give recommendations on what they believe the school should improve.

Any school improvement ultimately should be improvement that happens for the students. Student feedback is therefore an important part of this feedback loop. What do ODA students say?

“I think we need to improve our sports program by recruiting more athletes. In doing so I believe we will have more school spirit and I think that is important to have in a high school,” says junior Chloe Ruppert.

Freshman, Mason Kolbe states, “We need scholarships to recruit players for our sports.”

“More people should go to the athletic events to support our friends. There should be incentive to go like food. Also, at halftime we should have Thundercup events,” says senior Lauren Redington.

Others stated they would like to see more ethnic diversity and a sensitivity to economic diversity.

“We don’t have enough diversity. Usually with ethnic diversity comes language diversity. I lived in California where there was a lot of diversity such as Asians and Europeans and here there is nothing,” offers new freshman Josh Fernandez.

“Just the whole atmosphere. It’s a very judge-y place. One thing happens and you get made fun of. One event happens and the whole school knows. I guess you’ll never really fix that, but it’s a problem. I also think we need to reduce food costs so that the less fortunate can afford to buy lunch,” says junior Andrew Berg.

“I think the school spends too much money on unnecessary donations. I think we should spend the money on buildings, and I think textbooks should be free,” says freshman Max Hall.

These things matters because ultimately a school can’t run on one persons opinion of what it should be. A school that serves a lot of people deserves a lot of feedback to improve their students.

While all of these things concern the facilities and programs of the schools, essentially the school hopes to build students, allowing them to grow into their full potential.

A report card offers great time for reflection on all the ways the school can do just that.