Racine Unified School District found themselves in a similar situation as other school systems and business, they were facing huge budget cuts and rising costs in education. The district wanted to provide high quality education to their population, just under half of which were economically disadvantaged. In a case study found at the ASQ website and authored by Dr. Stephen Miller, we learned that this school district turned to a quality management system to help them improve student achievement, student engagement, customer satisfaction, and operational efficiency. Yes, ISO 9001 benefits any business and all school districts.
With ISO 9001:2000 in place, the district was able to show that attendance rates increased, and truancy and suspensions decreased. Their customer satisfaction survey did not show favorable results for middle and high school levels, which would normally be discouraging for the leaders of the district. However, they were able to show that while it was low, there was an increase in satisfaction in both levels showing movement in the right direction. Perhaps the most exciting part, as quality managers, was seeing that their Nonconformance reports increased from 91 in 2004-2005 to 134 the next year. This is exciting news; it shows that people are on board with the system and happy to identify areas from improvement. It shows the employees believe in the system and believe their leaders care about change for the better. Education and our children are a passion for Darci and you’ll see that come through at the end of the episode. School districts could be so much better with continual improvement. ISO 9001 also provides a better process for all departments, often resulting in more money for the bottom line, which could go directly back to the children and their education. Most often, we find these case studies and then learn that the district is no longer working on their quality management system. In education, the next person comes along to take a position and has a different idea or does not want to keep that one up. Quality Management should be here to stay for all businesses, and school districts.
If you or your team are interested in knowing more about how Quality Management and implementation of a standard such as ISO 9001 can improve your school district, email Darci directly at firstname.lastname@example.org