Our curriculum audit and the path forward

A special report from Coeur d'Alene Public Schools — June 6, 2019


What is this all about?

You may have heard about our recent curriculum audit. At 362 pages long, it's probably not on your summer reading list. Honestly, it's kind of dry ... except for the last two pages.

We have read it cover to cover, and we are eager to get to work on making the many improvements recommended. Doing this is likely to take years, but we are optimistic that this prescription for change will give the children of our community the absolute best education we can provide.

We'd like to tell you why we asked for this deep dive into the effectiveness of our district's written, taught and tested curriculum, and give you a glimpse of what the audit team recommended. We also promise to keep you informed on the changes we are making as we take this audit, and other vital feedback, and begin to chart a new strategic direction for our schools.

Here's our superintendent


Here's the lead auditor

“Audits are not for weenies. Audits are for systems that really want to get better.”

- Kay Coleman


Student voices

"Sometimes I feel teachers are teaching us

to remember but not to think."



How they evaluated us

Curriculum Management Solutions, Inc. spent a week in our district in February 2019. The audit team conducted 208 interviews with teachers, administrators, parents, students and community members. They also collected 2,382 surveys, visited 284 classrooms and reviewed 1,900 samples of student work.

The purpose was to identify gaps in the effective and efficient design, delivery and monitoring of the district’s curriculum. The audit provides recommendations for the School Board and district to consider in addressing these gaps and ensuring that the focus of the entire system always be to support the work of teaching and learning.


Where we need work

On May 20, the School Board received the final audit report, with 17 findings and 9 recommendations related to curriculum and instruction. This is explicit direction for us to grow in areas that will benefit students.

The full curriculum audit report is available online here.

  • Executive summary, pages 15-20
  • Findings, pages 21-250
  • Recommendations, pages 251-283


Student voices

"I want to be engaged in my learning. Engagement looks like a relationship with the teacher that is fun to be around, group conversations, not lecture every day, little small groups every day. I like the interactive classes most."


This will take time

The findings and recommendations give us a strong foundation for the development of a new strategic plan for the next 3-5 years in Coeur d’Alene Public Schools. That time range may even optimistic. There hopefully will be some quick fixes, but the lead auditor told us we should be prepared for this to take at least 5 years, and in some cases longer, to fully implement these changes.


Bringing it all together

So where do we go from here? The next steps are to align the recommendations from the curriculum audit with two other pieces of feedback: A similar independent look at our Special Education services that we had done last fall, and all of the feedback from our students and community in the recent Profile of a Graduate workshops.

We will take all three of these inputs and synthesize them into a work plan that we will begin to present to the community next fall. The work plan will guide development of a new strategic plan for the entire district.


Let's take this on

"Coeur d'Alene schools are good schools doing a good job but they are choosing to

take it to another level for the boys and girls and young people of the city."

- Lead Auditor Kay Coleman


Student voices

"I did not realize how great a community we had. Last year was a tough year, and they had our backs. We experienced immediate feedback of love and support."



Where you are ...