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Professional Learning Communities and Collaboration as a Vehicle to School Transformation


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Professional Learning Communities and Collaboration as a Vehicle to School Transformation - presented by Partners in School Innovation and Alum Rock Union Elementary School District at the California Department of Education Title 1 Conference in March 2014.

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Professional Learning Communities and Collaboration as a Vehicle to School Transformation

  1. 1. Professional Learning Communities and Collaboration as a Vehicle to School Transformation Rene Sanchez, Kelli Sorich, Rebecca Jensen, Tom Green & Viviana Cabrales Garcia
  2. 2. Introductions Please share: • Your name • Why you chose this session
  3. 3. Session Objectives • Learn how Cesar Chavez Elementary School transformed from one of the lowest performing schools in the state to having an API of 823 • Identify ways that you can strengthen your transformation work, taking advantage of the lessons Chavez leaders learned and the frameworks they used to support their work
  4. 4. The Cesar Chavez Elementary School Transformation Story
  5. 5. Latino 84% Asian 12% Other 4% Free/red uced lunch 88% English Learners 70% 484 students, East San Jose
  6. 6. 626 645 709 773 812 823 590 616 689 759 803 825 500 600 700 800 900 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Growth on the California Academic Performance Index All Students English Learners
  7. 7. Transformation Efforts designed to: • Make changes throughout a every part of a system • Influence, in significant ways, every student and staff member in a school system
  8. 8. SCHOOL TRANSFORMATION FRAMEWORK Q7ICBX Develop a System for Teacher Professional Learning Instructional Coaching Ensure Academic Success for Every Child Use Assessments Purposefully Define a Rigorous Curriculum Deliver Effective Instruction Continuously Improve the Instructional Program Teacher Collaboration Professional Development Lead Results-Oriented Cycles of Inquiry Set Vision Establish urgency Articulate core values Reflect & Adjust Adjust plans and leadership actions Act Distribute leadership Communicate expectations Plan Set goals Define strategy Assess Student learning Instructional quality
  9. 9. Results-Oriented Cycle of Inquiry Plan Act Assess Reflect & Adjust Set Goals
  10. 10. · Assigned an experienced principal to lead transformation efforts · Completed renovations to symbolize a renewed investment in the school · Stabilized the learning environment · Developed vision of Chavez student · Provided extended time for teachers to unpack standards, analyze data and plan lessons collaboratively · Formed a partnership with Partners in School Innovation · Formed an Instructional Leadership Team (ILT) · Identified the “Chavez Essentials” – instructional practices · Provided intensive professional development on strategies to support English Learners · Renewed focus on instruction through strong unit planning and direct instruction · Hired an instructional coach · Leaders communicated clear expectations and conducted regular classroom walkthroughs · Built ILT members capacity to lead collaboration and professional development · Collaborated with City Year to ensure after-school tutoring was aligned to student needs · Prepared for transition to Common Core State Standards 500 600 700 800 900 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Growth on the California Academic Performance Index All Students English Learners Exited program improvement after two years of dramatic gains in student achievement! Serves as demonstration site – supporting students and teachers to thrive. Listed in the bottom 5% of schools across the state.
  11. 11. Core Themes • Vision-driven • Student-centered • Investment in teachers • Ensuring high-quality instruction • Collaboration
  12. 12. Year 1: 2008- 09
  13. 13. Year 1: 2008-09 • Focused on creating a safe, orderly, and inviting school environment • Began clarifying our student vision • Invested in the infrastructure of the school – Repainted the exterior of the school – Invested in technology upgrades
  14. 14. Year 2: 2009- 10
  15. 15. Year 2: 2009-10 • Used staff meetings to deepen our vision for students and unpack our biases and assumptions about students • Dedicated time for teachers to collaborate and supported each team with a facilitator • Ensured that teachers were able to meet weekly to analyze data and plan instruction • Limited distractions (e.g. after-school interventions, fund-raisers, etc.)
  16. 16. Grade Level Collaboration Agenda 2008-09
  17. 17. Year 3: 2010- 11
  18. 18. Year 3: 2010-11 • Let go of a complicated RTI plan and began focusing more on core instruction – the “Chavez Essentials” • Instructional Leadership Team members helped define the priorities: – Gradual release – Strategies for supporting English Learners • Began to ensure alignment of all resources and External Support Providers
  19. 19. “The Chavez Essentials”
  20. 20. Year 4: 2011-12
  21. 21. Year 4: 2011-12 • Teachers involved in leading professional development sessions on our core strategies: gradual release and support for English Learners • Hired an instructional coach – Began focused coaching cycles • Conducted regular walkthroughs to monitor the quality of instruction and provide specific feedback to teachers on the “Chavez Essentials”
  22. 22. Classroom Observation Tool
  23. 23. Year 5: 2012-13
  24. 24. Year 5: 2012-13 • ILT members took on leadership roles in facilitating their grade level meetings • Collaborated with City Year to ensure that after-school tutoring aligned to core instruction • Continued to protect time, and be creative in providing additional time, for teachers to work together
  25. 25. Instructional Leadership Team Summer Retreat
  26. 26. 626 645 709 773 812 823 590 616 689 759 803 825 500 600 700 800 900 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Growth on the California Academic Performance Index All Students English Learners
  27. 27. Lessons We Learned • Invest in people not programs • Prioritize core instruction and limit distractions • Help foster the best, the brightest, the most committed • Use data to reflect and adjust
  28. 28. Tools We Relied On
  29. 29. Support for Our Transformation • Informal thought partners • District formed PLCs for: – Principals – Instructional Leadership Teams – Grade Levels (2nd grade, Kinder) • Partners in School Innovation
  30. 30. Alum Rock USD School and District Transformation Systems Map, 2012-13 (Updated 10/2/12) School Transformation Cross School Professional Learning District Transformation ILT PLC IL PLC RT PLC K PLC 2nd ELA PLC MS ELA PLC 1, 3, 4, 5 Sci., SS, PE, VPA Intervention & Resource FS HR IT MOT CNS MS Math PLC Counsel ors Blue= PSI Support Green= Pivot Support Purple= District Support 1 ES ESES 2 ES ESES 3 ES ESES 4 ES ESES 5 ES ES ES ES 6 & 7 MS MSMS IS ST SE SSS&F AS
  31. 31. Leaders using ROCI Build shared ownership of a vision and set SMART and equitable goals Plan Act Assess Reflect & Adjust Set Goals Create a theory of action and plan for attaining the vision and goals Create opportunities for teachers to learn to use new practices Monitor implementation of new strategies and their impact on student learning Use data to inform adjustments to strategies and support provided to teachers
  32. 32. Annual Goals and Theory of ActionCHAVEZ Theory of Action, 2011-2012 PD topics will include… EL support: sentence frames, lang obj. Direct Instruction/GRR Workshop/Differentiation DIBELS Technology (Promethean, Activotes) PD will include… Take away’s to impact classroom Integration of core values Teachers actively share best practices Focused collaboration Use of ROCI & backwards mapping Differentiate between RtI and core planning Focus on teacher response to data and reteaching Opportunities for cross grade level collaboration Commit to follow up and check ins/Accountability (everyone brings data, revisit and adjust charters, know strengths of colleagues) Support for RtI block to meet the needs of students Model, observe, facilitate lesson studies, peer observations, and peer coaching Focused on improving instructional practices, and student learning Analyze data Help focus lessons on objectives, and align to C2IA New teacher support Follow the coaching cycle Build collective ownership Exemplify core values: optimism & high expectations Focused on teacher and student learning Communicate expectations for implementation of C2IA Engaged in professional and student learning Support implementation of the Theory of Action Communicate action items and goals to the staff A “Wall of Fame” is posted in every classroom Monthly celebration for students meeting grade level standards (80% mastery) and growth goals Develop a school-wide reading program Log parent volunteer hours Host Back to School Night, Open House, and parent nights Coordinate with City Year to maximize their impact on student achievement Develop a plan for implementing a highly effective Peacebuilders program School-Wide CST Goal: 65% P/A in ELA; 75% P/A in Math; 800+API ELLs and Latinos will increase 25% pts. on the ELA CST ELL and Latino students will move up at least one performance band on the CST Move 50% of Basic Students into the Proficient Band Move all BB & FBB students into the Basic Band Chavez students will read 12,000 books in the 2011-2012 school year 100% of students will master 80% of key standards for the grade level as measured by key standard assessments Achieve 80% of parent participation rate on Back to School Night and Open House 100% parent attendance for Fall parent-teacher conferences 30% of parents will complete 30 hours of parent volunteer hours Curriculum: When we plan… • Content objectives with particular focus on English Language Learners.. • Standards-driven (power/key standards) units and lessons that are broken into measurable and teachable objectives • Plan with end in mind (backwards planning) • Write content objectives and make them relevant and in kid-friendly language. • “I can…” • “We will…” • “Students will be able to…” (SWBAT) Instruction: When we teach… • Content objectives and make them relevant and kid-friendly • Use Direct Instruction/Use Gradual Release of Responsibility (I do, We do, You Do) • Use sentence frames and language objectives • Use white boards/paddles, exit tickets, thumbs up/down, and think-pair-share as Checks for Understanding Assessment: When we assess • Use consistent assessments: DIBELS, INSPECT, Short Cycle Quizzes • Use Standards-based assessments for MATH AND ELA • Students track their progress for all Key Standards • Monitor data of all subgroups (using DIBELS, Inspect, CST, CELDT) Culture: When we create a culture that… • Reinforces a college going culture • Celebrates students’ growth and achievement • Encourages students’ love of reading • Welcomes and encourages parents to be active in the school and in the classroom Student Goals Professional Learning System Classroom Systems Professional Development Teacher Collaboration Instructional Coaching Instructional Leadership Team Culture & Community
  33. 33. Cycle Action Plan
  34. 34. Teachers Using ROCI Plan Act Assess Reflect & Adjust Set Goals Working together as a team to define clear outcomes for student mastery Collaboratively designing assessments and planning units and lessons Teaching with similar pacing; sharing lessons learned along the way Collecting evidence of student learning using common assessments Comparing student progress toward goals and thinking together about how to adjust instruction to better meet student needs
  35. 35. Time for Teachers to engage in ROCI (Release Day Agenda)
  36. 36. Example of a Unit Plan
  37. 37. After listening to the Chavez story, how are you thinking about deepening your own transformation work?
  38. 38. Contact Rene Sanchez Tom Green Viviana Garcia