Private Organization Accreditation

HeartShare assist individuals with developmental disabilities through education, day, residential and recreation programs, case management, and health services, and provides foster care/adoption services, counseling, after school and energy assistance programs, and programs for people with HIV/AIDS.


Children's Foundation of Mid America

James W. Thurman, President/CEO

Children’s Foundation of Mid America has been accredited through COA since 1983. The process of accreditation ensures that we meet or exceed the highest standards in the industry.
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An agency-wide Performance and Quality Improvement system effectively engages staff, persons served, and other stakeholders in advancing the agency’s mission and achieving strategic goals through continuous, integrated, data-driven efforts to improve service delivery and administrative practice.


The Performance and Quality Improvement (PA-PQI) Standards for public agencies provide the framework for an agency-wide PQI system that increases agency capacity to make data-informed decisions and effectively identify and implement interventions that support the achievement of performance targets, program goals, individual and family outcomes, and staff and consumer satisfaction. Building and sustaining a comprehensive, mission-driven PQI system is dependent upon the active engagement of staff, persons served, and other stakeholders throughout the improvement cycle. 

Interpretation: While the language used in this section intentionally highlights both performance and quality, COA recognizes that various terms are used by the field to reference the systemic improvement process including, but not limited to, Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) and Quality and Performance Management. The standards are intended to accommodate the agency’s preferred language and not to prescribe particular tools or techniques for implementing the PA-PQI standards.

Note: The Performance and Quality Improvement (PA-PQI) standards were revised in August 2016 as part of COA’s release of new Standards for Public Agencies. For more information, please refer to the PQI Standards Updates Summary - Public.

Note: Please see the tip sheet How to Read the Standards and Tables of Evidence - Public for further information on interpreting requirements according to public agency structure.

Note: Please see PA-PQI Reference List for a list of resources that informed the development of these standards.

Performance and Quality Improvement Narrative

Self-Study Evidence
    County/Municipality Administered Agency, State Administered Agency (Central Office), or other Public Entity
    1. Describe how the agency defines and promotes a culture that values learning and improvement, including:
      1. how strategic priorities influence the quality improvement process; and
      2. recent and upcoming special initiatives/approaches that promote a commitment to building on organizational culture of continuous learning and improvement. (PA-PQI 1)
    2. Describe the resources devoted to PQI. Include in your response:
      1. a brief overview of fiscal, staff, training, and technological resources; and
      2. a list of key PQI staff, including their role, qualifications, and experience. (PA-PQI 1, PA-PQI 3)
    3. Provide a list of measurement/data collection tools being used including:
      1. a brief description of the tool; 
      2. why each listed tool was chosen; 
      3. if the tool is standardized; and
      4. if the tool is used for contract monitoring. (PA-PQI 4)
    4. Describe how the agency’s PQI system integrates external monitoring activities (i.e. applicable federal reporting requirements and reviews, litigation) to identify priorities for PQI planning and ongoing monitoring.
    5. Describe the agency’s case review processes including an overview of the various types of case reviews the agency conducts. (PA-PQI 5)
    6. Describe the agency’s status with implementing the PQI standards, including:
      1. strengths and accomplishments; and
      2. any challenges the agency is experiencing with implementing the PQI standards.
    7. Provide any additional information that will increase the Peer Team’s understanding of the agency's implementation of the PA-PQI standards. 
    8. Completed Stakeholder Survey Recipient Reporting Form - Private, Public, Canadian (see Stakeholder Survey Instructions)
    Note: The Stakeholder Survey Recipient Reporting Form is associated with COA’s Stakeholder Survey Process which is an integral part of the accreditation process. Agencies should not upload documentation related to any internal survey process they may be conducting. For more information about COA’s Stakeholder Survey Process, see: COA’s Accreditation Guidelines.
    State Administered Agency (Regional Office) 
    1. Describe how the region promotes a culture of learning and improvement and ensures staff involvement in PQI activities. (PA-PQI 1)
    2. Describe the region’s status with implementing the agency’s PQI plan, including strengths, accomplishments, and challenges.
    3. Provide any additional information that will increase the Peer Team’s understanding of the region's implementation of PA-PQI and its participation in the statewide PQI system. 
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