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WASC 2018-2019Top of Page

Menlo-Atherton High School is up for a full accreditation review from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). The WASC committee will be on campus from Sunday, March 3-Wednesday, March 6. 
The accreditation team will meet with all staff and observe classes. The team will also speak with groups of students and community members. 
M-A staff has been preparing for this visit since August of 2017.
  • The previous cycle WASC goals were reintroduced to staff in August 2017 and in January of 2018 the goals were updated based on data from the 2016-2017 Dashboard report.
  • Between January 2018-February 2018, Focus Groups and Home Groups met multiple times to update action plan items with specific evidence and data from the subject areas.
  • Between March 2018 and May 2018, staff met twice in Focus Groups and twice in Home Groups to answer questions for Chapter 3 of the WASC report in the areas of Organization, Curriculum, Instruction, Data and Assessment, and Culture at M-A. 
  • In June 2018, based on data from multiple staff meetings parent engagement nights, student panels, and survey results, the M-A Leadership Team identified specific Critical Student Learning Needs for targeted support. These Critical Student Learning Needs were developed into the Action Plan during the summer of 2018.
  • At the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year, all staff members received highlights of the Action Plan and drafted their own goals to support this Action Plan process. 
  • In September of 2018, all staff members reviewed the areas of strength and areas of improvement for each section of Chapter 3 of the WASC report and in November, staff members reread their own sections.
  • In January of 2019, the WASC report chapters 4, the Critical Areas of Student Need and chapter 5, the Action Plan, was submitted and approved by SDMSC.
  • In February of 2019 the WASC report was approved by the SUHSD board.
The full report and the Action Plan will be posted later this year.

WASC 2015-16 Midterm ReviewTop of Page

WASC 2015-16 Midterm Review

WASC Accreditation

In the spring of 2013, Menlo-Atherton High School received the maximum six year accreditation from The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). On March 17-20 of 2013, M-A completed its six-year accreditation review. WASC sent a six-person team to review our self-study report, visit all classrooms, and meet with constituency groups.

The school began preparing for the WASC in 2011. We produced a 327-page report (posted below) that includes summaries of the school surveys, results from focus groups, student interviews, and an analysis of key trend data.

The visiting team commended the accurate representation of our self study and our honest portrayal of both our successes and challenges. The visiting team noted the following (listed numerically):

Areas of Strength:

  1. Our professional development program and collaboration plan
  2. Our standards based lessons with clearly stated objectives
  3. Our vision, mission, ESLRs and core values (PRIDE)
  4. Our student-centered support programs
  5. Our strategic use of site and district funds
  6. Our use of student data to drive instruction
  7. Our master schedule that offers a wide variety of classes at all levels
  8. Our SDSMC and Site Council’s ability to address school issues

Areas of Follow-up:

  1. Encourage all stakeholders to actively participate in decision-making and school activities.
  2. Continue to implement research-based instructional strategies in all classrooms.
  3. Continue to regularly communicate with students and parents using Infinite Campus and teacher websites.
  4. Continue to develop and implement support programs and high-interest, challenging elective courses.
  5. Broaden articulation efforts with all feeder schools and explore outreach programs.
  6. Improve student pride and connectedness with school through school activities and recognition.


WASC 2015-16 Midterm Review

On March 30, 2016, Menlo-Atherton was visited by a representative of the WASC committee for a mid-term evaluation to assess how Menlo-Atherton has been progressing on these areas of strength and areas of follow-up from the report in 2013.

Before the WASC review, Menlo-Atherton staff members met three separate times in preparation.

On May 20, 2015, staff members met in Focus Groups to discuss collective strengths and weaknesses as defined by the WASC team in 2013. Individual teachers also completed a survey on progress toward instruction-specific action items.

On September 15, 2015, staff members reviewed action plan items in departments and made notes on progress. Staff also looked at the WASC team recommended school-wide areas of follow-up and made notes on departmental progress.

On November 10, 2015, staff met again in focus groups to review school data. Staff also looked at the compiled responses from the May and September meetings and pulled specific school-wide updates to areas of strength and follow-up to be included in the final WASC document.


The WASC Visit

The visit comprised of a tour of classrooms and meetings with individuals about the WASC process, the school’s key data, and the school’s critical academic needs. The visit also included a debrief with key leadership team members regarding the school’s progress in our Action Plan.


Leadership Team

Simone Rick-Kennel

Administration – Principal

JC Farr

Administration – Administrative Vice Principal

Karl Losekoot

Administration – Administrative Vice Principal

Steve Lippi

Administration – Instructional Vice Principal

Michele Breen


Rachel Andres

AVID Coordinator

Katelyn LaPine

Conflict Mediation

Lisa Otsuka

English Department Head

Silvia Torres-Garza

Guidance Advisor (Head)

Mike Amoroso

Leadership; Freshmen Transition

Jennifer Payne

Math Department Head

Jenna Carson

Sequoia Aspirations Advocate Program (SAAP) Coordinator

Ben Wellington

Shared Decision Making Site Council (SDMSC) Chair

Tara Charles

Special Education Department Head

Miki Cristerna

Support Services Coordinator

Susie Choe

Technology Integration; WASC Coordinator


Focus Group leaders

Ben Wellington

Crystal Gilfillan

Danielle O’Neill

Jonathan Senigaglia

Katelyn LaPine

Kristen Torres

Natalie Stuart

Scott Kirk

Tara Charles


WASC 2016 - VideoTop of Page

WASC Mid-Cycle Progress Report 2016Top of Page