Thursday, August 4, 2011

APPR, Assessment & RTTT - Ready or not!

As part of the RTTT requirements, states must find a way to evaluate all certified teachers  (and principals) for efficacy.  NYSED just announced the "approved" assessment tools for the 40% local assessment.  We know that part of the 40% will be comprised of formal state assessments for "tested" areas, but for many certified teachers in non-assessed areas, this 40% becomes locally defined.   NYSED just announced the list of approved 40% tools
for local use:   On the page, please note on part "2. Locally-selected measures of student learning"-- "If a district or BOCES decides to use a district-wide goal-setting process as part of the locally-selected subcomponent, a district or BOCES may use an assessment on the List of Assessments; a State assessment; or a school or teacher-created assessment, provided that the district or BOCES verifies that the goal-setting process is rigorous and comparable across classrooms."

This could very well be what we all see as this is not apt to cost each district money.  Most of the options on the approved list of assessment providers cost considerably.  This might be the time to start thinking about goal setting.  To review a principal of goal-setting: 
 SMART goals = Specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely.
  What does this mean?  Ask yourself the following questions:
  • What can I do that will enhance student achievement and meet building goals?
  • How can I measure this (2 points of time...specifically defined)
  • Are these attainable? Can I reach these students? Are these EQ's on my curriculum maps?
  • Is this relevant to the common core (remember, Dewey is no where in the Common Core, but finding information is.  Synthesizing information is.  Fostering information literacy and technology skills is.  Increasing a students ability to evaluate information for credibility is....and more. 
  • Can I assess this between two points of time - probably September and June 
You will also want to start day 1 this year building a portfolio of teaching efficacy.  Start by preparing simple folders with the seven areas of NYS teaching standards labeled:
  1. Knowledge of Students & Student Learning
  2. Knowledge of Content & instructional planning
  3. Instruction - teaching for learning
  4. Learning Environment
  5. Assessing Student Learning
  6. Collaboration & professional responsibilities
  7. Professional Growth 
These folders will help you archive evidence of student achievement, teaching effectiveness, and provide artifacts for evaluation.   Here are some thoughts to help you figure out what to concentrate on:  What are your building achievement goals and how can you support them?  Can I help certain grade levels achieve better by collaborating?  Are there data analysis reports that you can review to determine whether you can influence student achievement withing your library time?   Are your curriculum topics closely aligned to the curriculum that is tested?  Can I help teachers with inference? Can I begin a boys book club (if stats show that your male readers are falling behind)? Can I communicate with caregivers to insure that they are aware of our resources that are available 24-7 from home?  This list could go on and on.... 

You may want to increase your knowledge of authentic assessment and how to capture assessment to demonstrate student growth.  Traditional focus has kept a focus on "measuring" summatively, student knowledge -- recall.  Truly effective assessment will measure at the beginning (diagnostically) to inform instruction.  We can measure along-the-way, also (as knowledge is forming) to monitor and adjust our instruction.  Or, students can self-assess and re-direct (also formative).  The current shift in summative assessment is to create rubrics for knowledge products that concretely demonstrate that your students have created new knowledge via synthesis of information, ideas, technology, tools, and skills. 

Between the locally chosen methods of assessment, goal-setting and achievement, and portfolios that you may be required to create,  you will be evaluated.  Why not give it your best shot to be a "highly effective" educator?  This is our time to shine.  We  librarians and cybrarians are well-acquainted with Inquiry, Collaboration, and supporting the learning goals of the buildings in which we work.  Never fear... with thought, planning, and determination, we can support the Common Core and our buildings' achievement. 

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this post, Paige. Your presentation on this at the SSL/NYLA Retreat was really informative. Thanks for shedding some light on this. The seven folders idea is really great, and I definitely plan on using it.