ESSA specifies that state educational agencies identify for Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) the lowest-performing schools, high schools with low graduation rates, and schools with chronically low-performing subgroups.

Method and Timeline

North Dakota selects schools with the highest proportion of struggling students for Comprehensive Support and Improvement every three years*. NDDPI works with school improvement teams and its leaders to develop a customized approach to address areas in need of improvement.

*Disclaimer: Due to a USED waiver issued in March 2020 as a result of the pandemic, states were allowed to pause accountability and the use of 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 data for identification purposes. Therefore, North Dakota is unable to fulfill the part of its ESSA plan that requires “three years of consecutive underperformance” when selecting schools for TSI/CSI. However, the USED required states to resume accountability in 2021-2022, and states were instructed to run accountability to ensure that schools that are underperforming compared to other schools in the state receive the support and resources needed to make improvements. The NDDPI utilized data from 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 to determine identification and to rank schools based on one or two years of underperformance and/or several subgroups performing below the highest-performing CSI school. The NDDPI will be able to fully implement its ESSA plan as written in the fall of 2025.

Identification Criteria

Schools must meet the following criteria:

  1. The lowest-performing 5% of all Title I schools in the state (based on the performance of the accountability framework over no more than three years)
  2. All public high schools (Title I or non-Title I) that graduate less than 67%
  3. Any school that was identified as Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI) and did not meet exit criteria after three consecutive years

Supports and Interventions

Schools selected are awarded school improvement grants for three consecutive years to implement evidence-based strategies and build local capacity to sustain improvement efforts. The following schools are currently identified as CSI schools:

CSI Schools Based on 2021-2022 Accountability Data
SchoolDistrictGrade SpanGrant AllocationImprovement Strategies Title I StatusEnrollment
Bowbells Elementary SchoolBowbells 140K-06$60,000Para, PDTargeted Assistance49
Dickinson Middle SchoolDickinson 106-08$75,000Literacy training, RTI, student engagementSchoolwide842
Drayton Elementary SchoolDrayton 19PK-08$60,000PD anchor standards and proficiency scales, Pd writing, PD math, technologyTargeted Assistance130
Dunseith Elementary SchoolDunseith 1PK-06$60,000PD anchor standards and proficiency scales, Pd writing, PD math, technologySchoolwide244
Dunseith High SchoolDunseith 107-12$67,500Staff stipends, PD, Elliot and McMahon, books, promethean board, ChromebooksSchoolwide303
Jefferson Elementary SchoolFargo 10K-05$60,000Salary for teacher-led projects, Schools Cubed contractSchoolwide378
Four Winds Community High SchoolFt Totten 3009-12$60,000Cognia, teacher stipends, Elliot McMahon ConsultantSchoolwide181
Fort Yates Middle SchoolFt Yates 405-08$60,000Teacher stipends, Ed Direction, Cognia, MTSSSchoolwide44
Valley Middle SchoolGrand Forks 106-08$67,500Lavinia contractSchoolwide513
Mandaree Elementary SchoolMandaree 360K-08$60,000Consultant, curriculumSchoolwide134
Oberon Elementary SchoolOberon 160K-08$60,000Updating curriculum (Reading, math, science, social studies)Schoolwide45
Selfridge Elementary SchoolSelfridge 80K-06$60,000Consultant Schoolwide34
Cannon Ball Elementary SchoolSolen 3PK-06$60,000Leadership stipends, LANES consulting, suppliesSchoolwide132
Warwick Elementary SchoolWarwick 29PK-04$60,000Coach through First Nations and NESCSchoolwide92
Warwick Middle SchoolWarwick 2905-08$60,000Coach through First Nations and NESCSchoolwide64


CSI Grant Cycle and Allocation:

School Improvement Grant Cycle and Allocations

CSI Grant Funding Period: September 1, 2022 - June 30, 2025 (yearly contract with continuing renewal)

Additionally, the NDDPI will provide support and interventions for schools selected using a multifaceted approach: 

  • All schools are provided guidance and support including training on requirements and opportunities, and a Coaching Liaison to provide technical assistance
  • NDDPI partners with the North Dakota Regional Education Associations (NDREAs) to support schools
    • This partnership provides an opportunity for identified schools to receive assistance with federal requirements, which includes coaching, professional development, evidence-based instructional strategies, data-based decision-making, and ongoing support to meet improvement goals using the School Renewal Guide
    • Watch this three-minute video for an overview of the Improvement Science approach that North Dakota is implementing: Improvement Science: A Key to Success in Your Schools - YouTube
  • Schools receive priority points for NDDPI-sponsored opportunities

Additional Requirements

  • School board and superintendent participation in the Be Legendary School Board Institute 
  • Quarterly Claims/Status Reports on funding support
  • Increased scrutiny of State and Federal monitoring and required reports

Exit Criteria

A school may exit CSI status upon achieving:

  • Scores that are above the bottom 5% of Title I schools for three consecutive years
  • A graduation rate that is 67% or higher for three consecutive years
  • Success in meeting established interim goals for three consecutive years for both academic achievement and graduation rates

Schools identified for more than one cycle are subject to more rigorous interventions, per ND FIRST.

Additional Information