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Root Cause Analysis:

Purpose and Outcome for Improvement

An essential step in the school improvement process is conducting a root cause analysis to uncover core causes of school performance problems. 

The University of Maryland College Park and Maryland State Department of Education collaborated with the American Institutes for Research to develop a Root Cause Analysis Facilitator Guide, Figure 1. The guide supports the facilitation of the root cause analysis process. 

There are four steps in the root cause analysis process:

  1. Craft a Problem Statement Based on Data

  2. Brainstorm Causal Factors

  3. Analyze Underlying Causes to Identify Root Causes

  4. Prioritize Root Causes for Intervention

 

The Root Cause Analysis Facilitator Guide explains each step in detail and provides worksheets that can be downloaded to guide the process.  

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Figure 1. The image links to the Root Cause Analysis
Facilitator Guide

Root Cause Analysis:
Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) Schools

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Under Maryland's Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Consolidated State Plan, all schools identified for Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) will be required to complete a needs assessment developed by the MSDE and have a root cause analysis conducted by a third party to uncover causes for school performance problems. 

To view the completed Root Cause Analysis reports for each school identified for Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI), visit the Root Cause Analysis Results page. 

Click on the image to read the Maryland Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Consolidated State Plan

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