2012 SCORE Prize Winners: Using Data to Enhance Learning - Page 7
USING DATA TO ENHANCE
these data to design their own ongoing assessments
and to tailor instruction and, in some cases, assessment, to specific groups of students.
Rose Park’s educators and administrators deeply
engage in data analysis and use it to drive school and
student improvement. They use formal and informal
assessment data to help determine the proper course
for each of their students.
Informal assessment data. Rose Park uses two
sources of informal data to augment their formal
performance measures. While they see this information as less official than the formal assessment
results, teachers possess a sense of confidence from
the supplemental knowledge about student performance supplied by the informal data. Currently, Rose
Park uses the online programs Study Island and Think
Through Math to supplement their knowledge of their
students’ understanding and progress toward mastery. While typically used for intervention instruction
or to provide supplemental information, Rose Park’s
teachers use the information from these programs to
identify student weaknesses and to motivate students to push harder.
The school’s teachers and academic staff—including
the numeracy and literacy coaches—evaluate student
performance regularly to assess how well students
are progressing. The information is used to make
decisions about student placement in appropriate
courses and ability groups that are altered based on
student progress throughout the year.
Formal assessment data. Rose Park uses three
major formal data sources to assess academic
develop- ment and growth: the state-required TCAP,
Discovery Education Assessment, and formative
assessments designed by teachers.
The school has used data from the Discovery Education Assessment (DEA) for the past three years
to measure student growth. The assessment aligns
with the Tennessee state education standards,
assuring the staff of the data’s utility and relevance.
The school’s understanding of student achievement
research that emphasizes the benefits of student
awareness of their academic performance has led
to an important student-monitoring program at Rose
Park. “Our Bound for Blue program is based on our
Discovery Education Assessment, and it helps kids
see where they are performing,” Blankenship said.
“Blue represents a high level of accomplishment,
green is proficient, yellow is basic, and red is below
proficient. Our students work hard to get as close to
blue as possible. This allows the students to evaluate
their own performance.”
The third data source—formal formative assessments—originates with teachers. The school’s numeracy and literacy coaches hold the primary responsibility of disaggregating and disseminating these
data for teachers. They also take on the responsibility
of ensuring that students receive the appropriate
interventions and levels of instruction—a task made
easier with the help of reliable performance data. The
coaches meet with teachers twice each month and
with the professional learning communities to review
data, determine what did and did not work instructionally, and consider what academic adjustments
must be made. The assessments are designed to
include questions and probes to gather data that is as
comprehensive, and useful as possible. Teachers use
Rose Park Math and Science Magnet Middle School
has a set of strong values and beliefs that drive its
progress. The school deeply cherishes collaboration
among and between administrators, teachers, and
students, and with the families the school serves.
Teachers implement highly engaging instructional