WHO IS ACCREDITED?

Private Organization Accreditation

Lutheran Social Services of New England is a high-performing nonprofit organization. LSS is a powerful difference maker and go-to resource, driving ourselves to constantly anticipate futures that are different from the past. For 140 years, LSS has been caring for people in need in New England.
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ORGANIZATION TESTIMONIAL

ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions

Tim Spearin, Vice President, Quality Assurance

ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions has been accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA) since 1996.  Reaccreditation attests that a member organization continues to meet the highest national operating standards as set by the COA.  It also provides assurance that ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions is performing services which the community needs, conducting its operations and funds successfully.
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Purpose

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.

FOC
PA-PQI 1: Culture of Learning and Improvement

The agency actively promotes and demonstrates a culture of learning and continual improvement.

Interpretation: The implementation and continuous refinement of an agency-wide PQI system can transform agencies from being narrowly compliance-focused into true learning organizations. Performance and Quality Improvement goes beyond only ensuring compliance with discrete requirements by pushing agencies to identify and address the systemic factors that impact practice and outcomes. 

Rating Indicators
1
Full Implementation, Outstanding Performance
A rating of (1) indicates that the agency's practices fully meet the standard and reflect a high level of capacity.  
  • All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, with rare or no exceptions: exceptions do not impact service quality or agency performance. 
2
Substantial Implementation, Good Performance
A rating of (2) indicates that an agency's infrastructure and practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement.
  • The majority of the standards requirements have been met and the basic framework required by the standard has been implemented. 
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality or agency performance.
3
Partial Implementation, Concerning Performance
  • A rating of (3) indicates that the agency's observed infrastructure and/or practices require significant improvement.  
  • The agency has not implemented the basic framework of the standard but instead has in place only part of this framework.  
  • Omissions or exceptions to the practices outlined in the standard occur regularly, or practices are implemented in a cursory or haphazard manner.  
  • Service quality or agency functioning may be compromised.  
  • Capacity is at a basic level.
4
Unsatisfactory Implementation or Performance
  • A rating of (4) indicates that implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all.  
  • The agency’s observed administration and management infrastructure and practices are weak or non-existent; or show signs of neglect, stagnation, or deterioration.
Please see Rating Guidance for additional rating examples. 

Table of Evidence

Self-Study Evidence On-Site Evidence On-Site Activities
    County/Municipality Administered Agency, State Administered Agency (Central Office), or other Public Entity
    • See long-term or strategic plan in PA-AM 3 (PA-PQI 1.01)
    • See annual plan(s) in PA-AM 4 (PA-PQI 1.01)
    • PQI system budget allocations (PA-PQI 1.01)
    • PQI department or program meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous quarter
    • Leadership team, management and staff meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous quarter (full administrative staff and large department meetings)
    State Administered Agency (Regional Office) 
    • Regional PQI planning meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous quarter
    • Regional management and staff meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous quarter (full staff and large department meetings)
    County/Municipality Administered Agency, State Administered Agency (Central Office), or other Public Entity
    • PQI department or program meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous and current calendar year
    • Leadership team, management, and staff meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous and current calendar year (full staff and large department meetings)
    State Administered Agency (Regional Office) 
    • Regional PQI meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous and current calendar year
    • Regional management and staff meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes for the previous and current calendar year(full staff and large department meetings)
    County/Municipality Administered Agency, State Administered Agency (Central Office), or other Public Entity
    • Interview:
      1. Agency leadership
      2. Staff at all levels
    State Administered Agency (Regional Office) 
    • Interview:
      1. Regional Director
      2. Agency leadership
      3. Staff at all levels

  • PA-PQI 1.01

    The agency’s leadership demonstrates a clear commitment to fostering a culture of learning and continual improvement by: 
    1. using quality improvement results to guide strategic planning and capacity-building efforts; 
    2. allocating resources for an agency-wide PQI system; and
    3. modeling and communicating methods for data-informed decision-making at the worker, program, region/community, agency, and system level.

    Interpretation: Examples of ways to demonstrate standard implementation include, but are not limited to: 
     
    1. The agency leadership actively use PQI information to mobilize financial and other resources to strengthen organizational capacity and increase organizational resilience; establishes the expectation that management, staff, and other stakeholders will be involved in the PQI system; and allocates sufficient resources, including technology resources, to sustain the PQI system.
    2. Senior Managers champion the goals of the PQI system as related to overarching agency goals, ensure the involvement of staff and stakeholders in the PQI process, and actively use data to inform operational decisions and support service improvement efforts.

    Note: The Narrative Question #1 provides evidence for PA-PQI 1.


  • PA-PQI 1.02

    Staff demonstrate the agency’s culture of learning and continual improvement and can articulate the goals of the PQI process. 

    Interpretation: Examples of ways to demonstrate standard implementation include, but are not limited to:
    1. supervisors clearly convey the goals of the PQI system, the values that undergird the PQI process, and staff roles in the process;
    2. supervisors help staff to interpret data within the context of  individual supervisory relationships, case-level practice discussions, and group supervision activities;
    3. staff across the agency can articulate the purpose and goals of the PQI process and explain associated procedures related to their work;
    4. staff use available data to inform case-level decisions;
    5. staff are supported in connecting the interpretation of data to their roles and responsibilities;
    6. staff are empowered to report their performance and quality improvement concerns and suggestions and are updated on applicable corrective action or follow-up; and
    7. staff are updated on PQI-related information in a timely manner.

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