Search Results Search term: data driven structures

The Missing Half

The Missing Half


Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, we could substantiate that the majority of a school’s office referrals were for will-based behaviors (verbal/physical interactions, inappropriate language, damage to property or materials, etc.); during distance learning, we have seen these behaviors flipped in the opposite direction into skill-based behaviors (students not logging on, lack of motivation, not turning in assignments, students having low self-concept, etc.).  As a result, the gap has widened in the behavioral needs of our students. If we have learned anything through teaching during this pandemic, it is that the term “behavior” doesn’t simply refer to a disruptive student.  The term behavior refers to academic behaviors (skill-based) AND social behaviors (will-based) and both need to be taught and reinforced schoolwide and in every classroom.

Schools have taken tremendous strides over the past two decades to ensure data driven structures and processes are in place for student academic success. In high performing PLC schools for example, each collaborative teacher team understands their role and takes lead responsibility and collective ownership to answer these four critical questions for their shared grade level or course identified academic standards: 1) What is it we want our students to know and be able to do? 2) How will we know when each student has learned it? 3) How will we respond when some students do not learn? 4) How will we extend the learning for students who are already proficient? (DuFour et al., 2016, p. 59). Read more

Leading PLCs at Work Districtwide: From Boardroom to Classroom


Every year hundreds of educators visit White River School District to observe the work of our collaborative teams and the districtwide systems that are in place to impact the work of our teams. We invite them to pull up a chair alongside our teacher teams and observe how they analyze data along with student work, and plan for additional time, support, and extensions–kid-by-kid and skill-by-skill. We share the tools our teachers use, from the websites that house unit plans, resources, and data, to job descriptions for our team leaders, to data collection tools. By observing the teams in action the things we are “tight” about across the district quickly become apparent, as well as how the work throughout our district aligns—from the boardroom to the classroom.

Well, we finally got our act together and put it all into a book (Leading PLCs at Work Districtwide, 2021). This book provides practical, step-by-step guidance that we hope will ignite educators as they lead and align the work of a professional learning community districtwide. Chock-full of practical resources, it should become a coveted resource for any district. Read more

Online Learning Teaching Tips; Pandemic Response and Educational Practices (PREP)

Online Learning Teaching Tips: How We Can Teach Our Students, Prepare Them for the Next Challenge—and Prepare Them for Life

Categories: Pandemic Response and Educational Practices

This entry is the tenth in a blog series called Pandemic Response and Educational Practices (PREP), which aims to highlight and further the important work educators are doing amid the worldwide COVID-19 crisis.

Based on the upcoming title Rigorous Learning: Preparing Students for a Changing World

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended traditional schooling and created enormous challenges for teachers and schools as they shift to remote student learning. There are numerous difficulties in making this shift that include the adequacy and use of technology, physical isolation, self-management, the daily challenges faced by students and families, and the difficulties of teaching and learning online.

In this blog entry, we will look at some ways to soften and reduce the academic challenges of remote learning, and at the same time consider the use of teaching approaches that help prepare students for a changing world. Read more

Two Ways to Avoid Falling into the RTI Rebranding Trap

Two Ways to Avoid Falling into the RTI Rebranding Trap

Categories: RTI

Based on Behavior Solutions: Teaching Academic and Social Skills Through RTI at Work™

First came RTI, then RTI², and now there’s MTSS

What’s different? What changed? 

As we support schools across the country, we are faced with many districts, even state departments of education who treat RTI as a bad word, rather than taking an honest look at the understanding, misconceptions, and implementation errors.  Read more

What Works: Continuous Assessment and Interval Grading

Categories: Assessment, Instruction, Robert Canady

In our recent publication, Beyond the Grade, our primary goal was to highlight practices proven to boost student achievement. As we began our study, we noticed assessment and grading topics being used interchangeably. 

With refinement of our practices, we identified specific distinctions between the two processes. Here, we discuss the importance of assessment and grading, and traditional and current beliefs and practices of each. With this information, we describe a key difference between assessment and grading—with assessment as a continuous process and grading as an interval one. These distinctions are key to boosting student achievement.  Read more