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Major Improvement Strategies and Action Steps

Pause on 2020-21 and 2021-22 State Accountability System Due to COVID-19

A second year of Accountability Pause (2021-2022) has been authorized by the Colorado legislature. The state's accountability system has been paused for 2020-21 and 2021-22. More details on the implications of a pause in accountability are available in the links below.


After setting targets, planning teams will develop a plan of action. This step includes identifying major improvement strategies, interim measures, and implementation benchmarks. Planning teams will also identify the specific action steps required to carry out each major improvement strategy and should respond to and eliminate or correct the root causes of each of the district or school’s prioritized performance challenges.

The UIP Handbook Section IV: Action Plans describes Action Planning in further detail.

Strategy selection and development:  CDE recommends considering a number of factors when considering strategy selection that includes research and fit and has compiled a number of tools to help with this process.

  • Hexagon Tool
    The Hexagon Tool can be used as a planning tool to evaluate evidence-based programs and practices
  • Contextual Fit Evaluation Tool
    The Contextual Fit Evaluation Tool (C-FET) is designed to assess eight features of contextual fit essential for effective adoption and sustained implementation of interventions and practices.

Overview Documents:

  • Developing Major Improvement Strategies (DOCX)
    Document outlining the steps in forming a major improvement strategy.
  • Force Field Analysis (DOCX)
    A description of force field analysis and a table that teams can use while engaging in force field analysis. Adapted from Kurt Lewin’s force field theory.
  • Priority Improvement and Turnaround Requirements 
    This supplement to the CDE District Accountability Handbook details requirements (on pages 14-15) for the UIP for these schools, including guidance for strategies that are appropriate in scope, intensity and type.


American Institutes for Research (2014).  Investing in What Works Issue Brief: The Role of Contextual Fit When Implementing Evidence-Based Interventions. Retrieved January 3rd, 2019.

What Rural Districts are Doing: Center on Innovation & Improvement (n.d.). Retrieved November 18, 2011.

Performance Cases: Center on Innovation & Improvement (2009). Breaking the Habit of Low Performance: Successful school restructuring stories. Retrieved November 18, 2011.