So, here we are...April 1, 2011. Our schools have some dire needs and the funding for our schools does not match those needs. For the last month, I have been observing teachers throughout the state of Pennsylvania. What a wonderful experience! I have seen some truly outstanding work. Teachers want to meet students' individual needs. They are finding creative ways to do this through the implementation of some incredible instructional strategies. They are using data to inform their instruction and it is so exciting to watch.
The difficulty, however, is that this is not done pervasively throughout the school system. When I ask the teacher how his or her neighbor or grade level partner is collecting and using data, the response is a shake of their head and then, they tell me that they just might be the only one who is using data to inform their instructional practice. They add that the school's or district's leaders are not informed as to how to use data, or the school system is not willing to endure the change process in order to do so.
So, we end up with "pockets" of improvement within our schools.
Wow! ...and these are the schools who are making Adequate Yearly Progress! I do wonder what the future hold for these schools. I do know that my services can support the effort to bring the system to parity.
If your school system has employed professional development that is job embedded and has the inte in order to improve the system, leave your comment and explain how it was done. I'm looking forward to hearing from you!
Dr. Frances A. Miller,