Monday, October 31, 2016

Data Team Leaders with #BCTLT

TLC Plan Change
  • Based on conversations and feedback with staff and administration, we have asked the state to change our TLC plan from having Model Teachers (MT) to having Data Team Leaders as part of our #BCTLT.  Our district's focus on using data to inform instruction and instructional practices is the main driver for this change.  
  • Currently, we have 17 MT's and want increase this number to 24 to be able to serve and support grade/content level teams in a more systematic way.  Our plan is to train the staff members who will occupy these positions in the "Data Team Process" starting this summer.  This training will be organized by our GWAEA support staff and District personnel.
  • As we worked through this change process, we involved the following in determining this proposed change:
    • Conversations and surveys with current staff and administration to review if the current job description and direction of the MT position was meeting our district needs -- consensus was that is was not.
    • We contacted surrounding districts on their current practices and job description.
    • We coordinated our efforts with GWAEA to facilitate proposed changes and develop a potential training plan.
    • We shared our concerns and solutions with our Benton Teacher Leadership Team and staff.  
    • We shared our concerns and solutions with our Benton Communications Team (our district advisory committee which is made up of staff, parents, students, board and community members). 
    • We shared our concerns and solutions with our Benton Board of Directors.  
  • Here is the link to the job description that was approved by the state.  
*This blog post was originally posted on this site in Feb. 18 2016

Friday, October 21, 2016

Using survey data as the driver

Sometimes we know exactly what we are doing and other times we stumble into things that turn out to be really beneficial.

One of these really good things we stumbled into at Benton Community within our Teacher Leadership is surveying our staff every 30 days, asking for their feedback, and using this data as a driver for our district work.  

Below are screenshots for our beginning of the year and 30 day survey results.   Reviewing this information and then being able to use it with intention with our staff has been shown to have impact as to how we are making a difference in our student learning experience at Benton Community.   


We've asked this question to gauge how receptive people are to our Instructional Coaches visiting teachers during instruction and planning time.




We've asked this question to gauge how receptive teachers are to this type of support within our District.


We use this information to approach our coaching conversations.

We moved from Model Teachers to Data Team Leaders this year.  We use this data to help determine where we are in learning the data team process.


We use this information to help partner with our supports (including our AEA partners) to determine our next steps. 





Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Community Data Wall at Keystone Elementary

Benton Community School District is a Year 3 Iowa TLC school and has recently transitioned from utilizing Model Teachers to now having a Data Team Leader at almost all grade levels/departments PK-12.  Our team has made data the center of most of our conversations, and with the support and guidance of our administration, the Instructional Coaches in our district have made it a goal to bring this data to a community place at all of our buildings.   Many classrooms currently have data walls, much like this one in a kindergarten classroom at Keystone Elementary.   This blog will focus on the community data wall located in the office at Keystone Elementary.


What is a data wall, you might ask?  A data wall is a space dedicated to displaying results over a period of time.  It is also a space to show whole school data, as well as grade-level or classroom data.  Data walls are also an opportunity for self-reflection and an opportunity to identify gaps.  If the data wall is in a community space, the names of students are preserved, and often, numbers take their place or general data is used.


Included on our data wall:

  • Preschool IGDIs - Picture Names
  • Kinder - Letter Sound Fluency
  • 1st Grade - Sentence Reading / CBM Fluency
  • 2nd Grade - CBM Fluency
  • 3rd Grade - CBM Fluency
  • PK-3rd grade - PBIS Office Referrals
  • Percentage of students "Progress Monitored" the week prior
  • Percentages of students who had "Intervention Time" entered into the Tier system the week prior
  • Weekly results over time



Keystone Elementary chose to get down to grade-level specific data from our fall, winter, and spring FAST assessments, as well as building-wide PBIS office referrals and weekly Progress Monitoring and Intervention data.  Our data wall will give us a chance to look at trends and take ownership of what is happening in our classrooms.



The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight. 
-- Carly Fiorina

Data is recorded and tracked over time.

We found that last year, sometimes our Progress Monitoring inadvertently was missed or incomplete.  This type of result was especially heightened during shortened weeks due to holidays or inclement weather.  According to the new Differentiated Accountability process in Iowa, 90% of the Progress Monitoring and Interventions must happen 90% of the time.  Our district has made it a focus to ensure that our Differentiated Accountability numbers continue to rise, and ensuring our Progress Monitoring and Intervention Time is being entered will help with this goal.   

Teachers make these two integral pieces a part of their classroom routine.  On Wednesdays, reports are run for the previous week and the data wall is updated.  Teachers are working hard to remember to make this a part of the routine, and as a result, Progress Monitoring happens every week and Interventions times are being entered with fidelity.  As the quote says, it's all about the kids.  This data wall is not about pointing fingers or calling each other out.  Instead, it is about embracing the "us" mentality.  These are our kids and we can work together to ensure their success. 

For more information on data walls at Benton CSD, don't hesitate to reach out!

This blog post was originally posted at www.townsleyaj.blogspot.com