Self Assessment. Orange County Public Schools. Dr. Barbara Jenkins, Superintendent 445 W Amelia St Orlando, FL

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1 Dr. Barbara Jenkins, Superintendent 445 W Amelia St Orlando, FL Document Generated On April 13, 2016

2 TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction 1 Purpose and Direction 2 Governance and Leadership 8 Teaching and Assessing for Learning 12 Resources and Support Systems 20 Using Results for Continuous Improvement 27 Report Summary 35

3 Introduction AdvancED's Self Assessment (SA) diagnostic is based on the AdvancED Standards of Quality, which serves as the foundation of the accreditation and continuous improvement process. The SA is a valuable tool for collaboratively engaging staff members and stakeholders in purposeful, honest dialogue and reflection to assess the institution's adherence to the Standards, and guide its continuous improvement efforts. The SA includes the institution's self-ratings of and the evidence cited for each of the indicators, comments that explain the indicator's ratings and an overall narrative for each Standard. The results of the SA are reviewed by the External Review Team as one essential component of the preparation process for the institution's External Review. Page 1

4 Purpose and Direction The system maintains and communicates at all levels of the organization a purpose and direction for continuous improvement that commit to high expectations for learning as well as shared values and beliefs about teaching and learning. Overall Rating: The system engages in a systematic, inclusive, and comprehensive process to review, revise, and communicate a system-wide purpose for student success. District purpose statements - past and present Level 3 The system's process for review, revision, and communication of the purpose statement is documented. The process is formalized and implemented on a regular schedule. The process includes participation by representatives from all stakeholder groups. The purpose statement focuses on student success. Documentation or description of the process for creating the district's purpose including the role of stakeholders Written District Quality Assurance Review procedures and documents that monitor its schools' adherence to the district purpose and direction Examples of communications to stakeholders about the district's purpose (i.e. website, newsletters, annual report, student handbook) Minutes from meetings related to development of the district's purpose and direction Copy of strategic plan referencing the district purpose and direction and its effectiveness Communication plan to stakeholders regarding the district's purpose Page 2

5 1.2 The system ensures that each school engages in a systematic, inclusive, and comprehensive process to review, revise, and communicate a school purpose for student success. Agendas and/or minutes that reference a commitment to the components of the schools' purpose statements Level 2 System policies and procedures outline the expectations for schools regarding a process for review, revision, and communication of a purpose for student success. System personnel monitor each school and sometimes provide feedback for the improvement of the implementation of the process to school personnel. Written District Quality Assurance Review procedures and documents that monitor schools' adherence to the district purpose and direction and that of the school Examples of school purpose statements if different from the district purpose statement Examples of written stakeholder communications or marketing materials that portray the school purpose and direction 1.3 The school leadership and staff at all levels of the system commit to a culture that is based on shared values and beliefs about teaching and learning and supports challenging, equitable educational programs and learning experiences for all students that include achievement of learning, thinking, and life skills. Communication plan and artifacts that show twoway communication to staff and stakeholders about educational programs and equitable learning experiences Level 3 Commitment to shared values and beliefs about teaching and learning is evident in documentation and decision making. This commitment is regularly reflected in communication among leaders and staff. Challenging educational programs and equitable learning experiences are implemented so that all students achieve learning, thinking, and life skills necessary for success. Evidence indicates a commitment to instructional practices that include active student engagement, a focus on depth of understanding, and the application of knowledge and skills. System leadership and staff share high expectations for professional practice. District Quality Assurance Review plans that document two-way communication on district and school effectiveness and learning, thinking, and life skills Examples of schools' continuous improvement plans Survey results Statements or documents about ethical and professional practices Professional development plans and implementation timelines on topics related to equity, organizational effectiveness, and improved instruction and programs Statements of shared values and beliefs about teaching and learning The district strategic plan Page 3

6 1.4 Leadership at all levels of the system implement a continuous improvement process that provides clear direction for improving conditions that support student learning. Examples of schools continuous improvement plans Level 2 Most leaders throughout the system implement a continuous improvement process for improving student learning and the conditions that support learning. Some stakeholder groups are engaged in the process. School personnel maintain a profile with data on student, school, and system performance. The profile contains data used to identify goals for the improvement of achievement and instruction that are aligned with the system's purpose. The process includes action planning that identifies measurable objectives, strategies, activities, resources, and timelines for achieving improvement goals. Most interventions and strategies are implemented with fidelity. Some documentation that the process yields improved student achievement and conditions that support student learning is available. District Quality Assurance Review plans that document two-way communication on district and school effectiveness and learning, thinking, and life skills Survey results Professional development plans and implementation timelines on topics related to equity, organizational effectiveness, and improved instruction and programs Agenda, minutes from continuous improvement planning meetings Communication plan and artifacts that show twoway communication to staff and stakeholders The district data profile The district strategic plan Reflect upon your responses to each of the indicators and performance levels by considering and responding to the following questions when drafting your narrative response. Use language from the performance level descriptions to guide your writing. Cite sources of evidence the External Review team members may be interested in reviewing. (OCPS) strives to communicate its commitment to continuous improvement and high expectations for the use of teaching strategies that yield increased levels of learning for all students. This is reflected in the district's vision to be the top producer of successful students in the nation, and in our mission to lead our students to success with the support and involvement of families and the community. In addition, our first and foremost goal is an intense focus on student achievement. These guiding statements were developed and revised through a comprehensive and inclusive process that gathered input from school board members, district leadership, learning community leadership, school representation, parent and community groups, and partner religious organizations. Their use for steering the district course is well-documented at all levels within board documents, school and district marketing materials and internal and external communication such as presentations and messaging, and is culturally embedded within OCPS. The original vision, mission and goals developed in 2010 were reaffirmed in 2015 when the strategic plan was refreshed. In addition, an unwavering commitment to improving teaching and learning is shared by district and school leadership and manifests itself in process, practice and constant review of data. In support of the district's strategic business plans, the Philanthropic Strategic Plan and the strategic plan of the Foundation for both align with these overarching goals. Page 4

7 There is a great deal of evidence to support that OCPS engages in a systematic, inclusive and comprehensive process to review, revise and communicate a system-wide purpose for student success. Most recently, this process resulted in the district being named a co-winner of the 2014 Broad Prize for Urban Education. The annual $1 million award - the largest education prize in the country - recognizes urban school districts that demonstrate the greatest overall performance and improvement in student achievement while reducing achievement gaps among low-income students and students of color. This year's finalists were selected from among 75 of the country's largest school districts by a review board of 13 prominent education researchers, policy leaders, practitioners and executives from leading universities, education associations, civil rights advocacy organizations, think-tanks and foundations, which evaluated publicly available academic achievement data. The winners split the award; OCPS received $500,000. Among the reasons OCPS was chosen as a 2014 Broad Prize co-winner are: -- A greater percentage of Black students are reaching advanced academic levels in Orange County than in other districts in Florida. -- In recent years, Orange County narrowed income and ethnic achievement gaps. -- Orange County's college readiness has improved. Our students consistently outperform the state on standardized testing measures, participate at high rates in Advanced Placement (AP) courses, graduate with college credits or industry certifications, and go on to study at the top universities in the country. OCPS has documented the formalized process for review, revision and communication of our district's vision, mission, values, market differentiators, goals and division priorities. The plan itself has a five-year lifespan with a systematic review conducted annually. In 2013, an additional diagnostic audit was performed by a team of independent researchers. As noted above, both the development and revision process includes participation from all stakeholder groups, including school board members, district leadership, learning community leadership, school representation, parent and community groups, and partner religious organizations. The OCPS vision and mission statements clearly focus on student success, and the shared commitment to a set of research-based values and beliefs about teaching and learning is evident in documentation and decision-making. OCPS is strongly committed to improving the instructional practices of staff at all levels, including focus on student engagement, depth of understanding and the application of knowledge and skills. This is done through weekly monitoring and analysis of observation and feedback data by district and learning community leadership in addition to a focus on calibrating efforts through coordinated learning walks. These learning walks, conducted monthly by district leadership at various school sites, provide an opportunity for calibrated and collaborative growth experiences while discussing the rigor of the classroom instruction observed and suggesting feedback for improvement. This approach ensures district leadership and staff hold one another accountable for the same high expectations for professional practice. Access to challenging, equitable educational programs and learning experiences are offered for all students to achieve the learning, thinking and life skills necessary for success. Widespread efforts are made to provide opportunities to all students with a commitment to calibration and monitoring of teaching strategies to improve instruction through actionable feedback. Communication through internal and external means is consistent with this commitment to student success and active engagement with school and learning as a priority. This commitment is also regularly reflected in communication among leaders and staff. Page 5

8 The actions needed to sustain these areas include continuing to follow established processes for measuring strategic plan objectives via scheduled review of extended scorecard results, and a continued commitment to external and internal communication of purpose, direction and strategies to attain student success. OCPS strategies are thoughtfully selected through established business processes and based on research and past results. This information is listed on our district website. Strategic business plans and progress are shared at board work sessions each year. Extended scorecards and strategy monitoring cards are used collectively by district staff to focus on specific strategies for meeting district priorities and to measure progress toward our goals. Opportunities for improvement exist in areas such as ensuring (1) schools engage in a similar process to the district in reviewing, revising and communicating a purpose for student success and (2) leaders provide clear direction for improving conditions that support student learning. Although many schools have processes for developing guiding documents such as School Improvement Plans (SIP) and staff handbooks, a systematic approach to training schools on the process, a district-wide system for monitoring these processes, and designation of personnel dedicated to these tasks have not been fully evident. This is true even though OCPS has outlined the expectations for student success and the procedures regarding the review, revision and communication of school plans for achieving these expectations. While many school leaders implement a continuous improvement process for increasing student learning that includes observation and coaching with feedback, monitoring data, and implementing intervention strategies within their own school leadership teams, others are still developing their knowledge and skills on the process and expectations for fidelity of implementation. Though many individual schools use student and school performance data profiles to identify improvement goals and align instruction with district goals, there is variation across the district. To combat this, all school leadership teams were brought together at the end of for several days of training in the systematic process for developing plans consistent with district expectations. The expectation is that all leaders use a documented and systematic continuous improvement process for improving student learning and the conditions that support learning. The training outlined processes for engaging all stakeholder groups and action planning for achieving improvement goals. Additionally, expectations were outlined for plan review and evaluation. The evidence for designation of personnel responsible for monitoring and maintaining data about each school and providing feedback to schools varies by area. It should be noted that measurable performance targets within SIPs for all schools are reviewed by learning community leadership as a strategy to hold one another accountable for the overall implementation quality of all interventions and strategies. Some schools are asked to present their plans to the school board for discussion and feedback. A variety of supporting documentation and data showing improvements in student achievement are available, but the data monitoring process of specific sites can still be improved. Future plans for improving these areas include continued training and communication regarding a systematic approach to the improvement of achievement and instruction that is aligned with the system's purpose. This includes (1) the refreshed strategic business plans being shared with district and school leadership over the summer, (2) follow-up to the two-day training this summer on the SIP process and (3) monitoring conducted by learning communities. Some strategies include: -- training all schools in building collective knowledge of and skills for school improvement processes; -- building a common and systematic approach to developing school goals and, subsequently, their school improvement initiatives; Page 6

9 -- developing school- and district-wide processes for gathering data to monitor the success of initiatives; and -- clearly outline the staff dedicated to these tasks. Efforts will include a monitored and consistent process for action planning that identifies measurable objectives, strategies, activities, resources and timelines for achieving improvement goals at each site. In addition, the process for monitoring data is constantly evolving to ensure that the right information is collected and used to improve student achievement. Some documentation showing that the process yields improved student achievement and conditions that support student learning is available. Page 7

10 Governance and Leadership The system operates under governance and leadership that promote and support student performance and system effectiveness. Overall Rating: The governing body establishes policies and supports practices that ensure effective administration of the system and its schools. Professional development Level 4 plans Student handbooks Policies and practices clearly and directly support the system's purpose and direction and the effective operation of the system and its schools. Policies and practices require and have mechanisms in place for monitoring conditions that support student learning, effective instruction, and assessment that produce equitable and challenging learning experiences for all students. There are policies and practices requiring and giving direction for professional growth of all staff. Policies and practices provide clear requirements, direction for, and oversight of fiscal management at all levels of the system. Governing body policies, procedures, and practices Staff handbooks Communications to stakeholder about policy revisions School handbooks 2.2 The governing body operates responsibly and functions effectively. Level 4 The governing body has implemented a process to evaluate its decisions and actions to ensure they are in accordance with defined roles and responsibilities, a formally adopted code of ethics, and free of conflict of interest. Governing body members are required to participate in a systematic, formal professional development process regarding the roles and responsibilities of the governing body and its individual members. The professional development curriculum also includes conflict resolution, decision-making, supervision and evaluation, and fiscal responsibility. Members comply with all policies, procedures, laws, and regulations and function as a cohesive unit for the benefit of effective system operation and student learning. Communication plan to inform all staff on code of ethics, responsibilities, conflict of interest List of assigned staff for compliance Proof of legal counsel Governing authority training plan Findings of internal and external reviews of compliance with laws, regulations, and policies Historical compliance data Governing authority policies on roles and responsibilities, conflict of interest Governing code of ethics Page 8

11 2.3 The governing body ensures that the leadership at all levels has the autonomy to meet goals for achievement and instruction and to manage day-to-day operations effectively. Communications regarding governing authority actions District strategic plan Level 3 The governing body protects, supports, and respects the autonomy of system and school leadership to accomplish goals for improvement in student learning and instruction and to manage day-to-day operations of the system and its schools. The governing body maintains a distinction between its roles and responsibilities and those of system and school leadership. Examples of school improvement plans Roles and responsibilities of school leadership Roles and responsibilities of district leadership Social media Agendas and minutes of meetings 2.4 Leadership and staff at all levels of the system foster a culture consistent with the system's purpose and direction. Professional development Level 3 offerings and plans Leaders and staff throughout the system align their decisions and actions toward continuous improvement to achieve the system's purpose. They expect all personnel to maintain high standards and to hold students to high standards in all courses of study. All leaders and staff are collectively accountable for maintaining and improving conditions that support student learning. Leaders throughout the system support innovation, collaboration, shared leadership, and professional growth. The culture is characterized by collaboration and a sense of community. Examples of collaboration and shared leadership Examples of decisions in support of the schools' continuous improvement plans Examples of improvement efforts and innovations in the educational programs Examples of decisions aligned with the district's purpose and direction 2.5 Leadership engages stakeholders effectively in support of the system's purpose and direction. Minutes from meetings with stakeholders Level 3 Leaders communicate effectively with appropriate and varied representatives from stakeholder groups, provide opportunities for stakeholders to shape decisions, solicit feedback and respond to stakeholders, work collaboratively on system and school improvement efforts, and provide and support meaningful leadership roles for stakeholders. System and school leaders' efforts result in measurable, active stakeholder participation, engagement in the system and its schools, a sense of community, and ownership. Examples of stakeholder input or feedback resulting in district action Survey responses Communication plan Involvement of stakeholders in district strategic plan Page 9

12 2.6 Leadership and staff supervision and evaluation processes result in improved professional practice in all areas of the system and improved student success. Examples of professional development offerings and plans tied specifically to the results from supervision and evaluation Level 3 The focus of the criteria and processes of supervision and evaluation is improving professional practice throughout the system and improving student success. Supervision and evaluation processes are regularly implemented. The results of the supervision and evaluation processes are used to monitor and effectively adjust professional practice throughout the system and improve student learning. Governing body policy on supervision and evaluation Supervision and evaluation documents with criteria for improving professional practice throughout the system and student success noted Representative supervision and evaluation reports Reflect upon your responses to each of the indicators and performance levels by considering and responding to the following questions when drafting your narrative response. Use language from the performance level descriptions to guide your writing. Cite sources of evidence the External Review team members may be interested in reviewing. (OCPS) operates under governance and leadership that promote and support student performance and system effectiveness. The School Board of Orange County, Florida, is comprised of eight members, seven of whom are elected from the single districts they represent with one (chairman) elected countywide. All members are elected for four-year terms. The school board demonstrates a strong respect for district and school leadership by affording autonomy to conduct business in accordance with their roles and responsibilities. The school board and the superintendent have a strong working relationship that supports this autonomy and the ability of leaders to remain focused on established policies and procedures. District resources are aligned to the district goals and strategic plans to ensure consistency in the work to meet district expectations. The school board is responsible for setting policy and meeting requirements set by the Florida Legislature and State Board of Education Rules. All school board meetings, work sessions and committee meetings are open to the public in accordance with the Sunshine Law except for specific sessions (known as executive sessions). The school board, superintendent, school board attorney and appropriate staff members may meet to discuss bargaining agreements. The superintendent is appointed by the school board and has administrative authority for the direction and operation of the school system under the policies adopted by the school board. The district takes a strategic approach to the development of policy and the establishment of a culture to support leadership in developing and monitoring the daily operations that result in improved professional practices and student achievement. A noted area of strength is the alignment of school and leader practices that are driven by the five district goals: (1) Intense Focus on Student Achievement; (2) High- Performing and Dedicated Team; (3) Safe Learning and Working Environment; (4) Efficient Operations; and (5) Sustained Community Engagement. The strategic planning process identifies priorities directly aligned to these goals. The strategic plan articulates the vision and mission established by the school board and superintendent. The five-year plans provide a long-range view of what OCPS will do to meet the five goals. The district scorecards provide a status report on the 24 key measures of district performance outlined in the business plans. Areas that show signs of growth include greater parental/community involvement in the strategic plan and school system. Initiatives such as Leadership Orange and the Parent Academy have demonstrated that great strides have been made to inform and involve these key stakeholders so they can be stronger advocates for their families and the work of the district. We will continue to develop these and other initiatives. Page 10

13 One of the strengths in our district governance and leadership is communication. As identified in the evidence supporting the governing body and the systemic work including all stakeholders to ensure efficient operations, once the school board meets, decisions and policies are broadcast through internal and external media. Highlights from the meeting are shared within hours of its conclusion through OCPS newsroom s and updates on the district website. Through a cohesive "One Vision, One Voice," the governing body ensures that all district and school leaders are aligned in their work. The district has a clear plan for communicating expectations regarding policy and training all stakeholders on the code of ethics, lobbying and procurement procedures. The effectiveness of our evaluation models is representative of a tightly coupled system that takes input from various stakeholders and provides feedback throughout the system to ensure fair and appropriate evaluation of employees. All levels of administrators in the district receive job-embedded training and calibrations to increase inter-rater reliability. Seeking input from stakeholders is another noted area of strength. One example is that the superintendent hosts round table discussions open to all teachers in the district. These sessions are held in each school board member's district throughout the year. The discussions are led by the superintendent, who asks the following questions: "what is working well?"; "what worries you?"; and "what resources do you need?" Board members also host town hall meetings in their respective districts to engage in dialogue with and gain feedback from community stakeholders. Through the district Career and Technical Education division, data have indicated impressive growth in student preparation for career and college readiness. Certification opportunities and pathways have been established throughout the K-12 structure and have resulted in a significant increase in industry certification. Project Lead the Way is an example of how we intensely prepare students for the workforce. The district is addressing these areas of focus in one of the six Teaching and Learning business plan priorities within the recently-refreshed strategic plan: Ensure Career and College Readiness. Page 11

14 Teaching and Assessing for Learning The system's curriculum, instructional design, and assessment practices guide and ensure teacher effectiveness and student learning across all grades and courses. Overall Rating: The system's curriculum provides equitable and challenging learning experiences that ensure all students have sufficient opportunities to develop learning, thinking, and life skills that lead to success at the next level. Learning expectations for different courses and programs Course, program, or school schedules Level 3 Curriculum and learning experiences in each course/class provide all students with challenging and equitable opportunities to develop learning skills, thinking skills, and life skills. There is some evidence to indicate curriculum and learning experiences prepare students for success at the next level. Like courses/classes have equivalent learning expectations across the system. Teachers in all schools individualize some learning activities for each student in a way that supports achievement of expectations. Student work across courses or programs Course or program descriptions Survey results Lesson plans Teacher evaluation criteria relating to prescribed instructional designs and proprietary practices Posted learning objectives Enrollment patterns for various courses and programs Descriptions of instructional techniques Page 12

15 3.2 Curriculum, instruction, and assessment throughout the system are monitored and adjusted systematically in response to data from multiple assessments of student learning and an examination of professional practice. Curriculum guides A description of the systematic review process for curriculum, instruction, and assessment Common assessments Level 3 Using data from student assessments and an examination of professional practice, system and school personnel monitor and adjust curriculum, instruction, and assessment to ensure vertical and horizontal alignment and alignment with goals for achievement and instruction and statements of purpose. There is a process in place to ensure alignment each time curriculum, instruction, and/or assessments are reviewed or revised at the system or school level. The continuous improvement process ensures that vertical and horizontal alignment as well as alignment with the system's purpose are maintained and enhanced in curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Standards-based report cards Surveys results Program descriptions Teacher evaluation criteria relating to prescribed instructional designs and proprietary practices Profile of educational model or delivery system Products scope and sequence, curriculum maps Lesson plans aligned to the curriculum 3.3 Teachers throughout the district engage students in their learning through instructional strategies that ensure achievement of learning expectations. Examples of professional development offerings and plans tied specifically to the results from supervision and evaluation Level 2 Teachers in most schools sometimes use instructional strategies that require student collaboration, self-reflection, and development of critical thinking skills. Teachers personalize instructional strategies and interventions to address individual learning needs of groups of students when necessary. Teachers sometimes use instructional strategies that require students to apply knowledge and skills, integrate content and skills with other disciplines, and use technologies as instructional resources and learning tools. Authentic assessments Examples of teacher use of technology as an instructional resource Findings from supervisor formal and informal observations Examples of student use of technology as a learning tool Surveys results Examples of professional development offerings and plans tied specifically to the approved or prescribed instructional strategies and programs Teacher evaluation criteria relating to prescribed instructional designs and proprietary practices Interdisciplinary projects Page 13

16 3.4 System and school leaders monitor and support the improvement of instructional practices of teachers to ensure student success. Curriculum maps Supervision and evaluation procedures Level 3 System and school leaders formally and consistently monitor instructional practices through supervision and evaluation procedures to ensure that they 1) are aligned with the system's values and beliefs about teaching and learning, 2) are teaching the approved curriculum, 3) are directly engaged with all students in the oversight of their learning, and 4) use content-specific standards of professional practice. Peer or mentoring opportunities and interactions Recognition of teachers with regard to these practices Surveys results Examples of improvements to instructional practices resulting from the evaluation process Administrative classroom observation protocols and logs Professional development offerings and plans tied to the prescribed education program, instructional strategies, developmentally appropriate practices, and student success 3.5 The system operates as a collaborative learning organization through structures that support improved instruction and student learning at all levels. Common language, protocols and reporting tools Level 2 Some system staff participate in collaborative learning communities that meet both informally and formally. Collaboration occasionally occurs across grade levels, content areas, and other system divisions. Staff members promote discussion about student learning and the conditions that support student learning. Learning, using, and discussing the results of inquiry practices such as action research, the examination of student work, reflection, study teams, and peer coaching sometimes occur among system personnel. System personnel express belief in the value of collaborative learning communities. Agendas and minutes of collaborative learning committees Calendar/schedule of learning community meetings Professional development funding to promote professional learning communities Peer coaching guidelines and procedures Evidence of informal conversations that reflect collaboration about student learning Examples of cross curricular or program projects, interdisciplinary instruction, and classroom action research projects Page 14

17 3.6 Teachers implement the system's instructional process in support of student learning. Examples of learning expectations and standards of performance Level 2 Most teachers in the system use an instructional process that informs students of learning expectations and standards of performance. Exemplars are sometimes provided to guide and inform students. The process may include multiple measures, including formative assessments, to inform the ongoing modification of instruction. The process provides students with feedback about their learning. Survey results Examples of assessments that prompted modification in instruction Samples of exemplars used to guide and inform student learning 3.7 Mentoring, coaching, and induction programs support instructional improvement consistent with the system's values and beliefs about teaching and learning. Survey results Level 3 System personnel are engaged in mentoring, coaching, and induction programs that are consistent with the system's values and beliefs about teaching, learning, and the conditions that support learning. These programs set expectations for all system personnel and include measures of performance. Descriptions and schedules of mentoring, coaching, and induction programs with references to district and school beliefs and values about teaching and learning Records of meetings and informal feedback sessions Professional learning calendar with activities for instructional support of new staff Personnel manuals with information related to new hires including mentoring, coaching, and induction practices Page 15

18 3.8 The system and all of its schools engage families in meaningful ways in their children's education and keep them informed of their children's learning progress. Programs that engage families in meaningful ways in their children's education are designed and implemented. System and school personnel regularly inform families of their children's learning process. Performance-based report cards Examples of learning expectations and standards of performance Level 3 Volunteer program with variety of options for participation List of varied activities and communications modes with families, e.g., info portal, online, newsletters, parent centers, academic nights, open house, early release days Calendar outlining when and how families are provided information on child's progress Parental/family/caregiver involvement plan including activities, timeframes, and evaluation process Samples of exemplars used to guide and inform student learning 3.9 The system designs and evaluates structures in all schools whereby each student is well known by at least one adult advocate in the student's school who supports that student's educational experience. Curriculum and activities of structures for adults advocating on behalf of students Level 2 Most school personnel participate in a structure designed by the system that gives them interaction with individual students, allowing them to build relationships over time with the student. Most students participate in the structure. The structure allows the school employee to gain insight into the student's needs regarding learning skills, thinking skills, and life skills. Description of formalized structures for adults to advocate on behalf of students Page 16

19 3.10 Grading and reporting are based on clearly defined criteria that represent the attainment of content knowledge and skills and are consistent across grade levels and courses. Evaluation process for grading and reporting practices Level 2 Most teachers across the system use common grading and reporting policies, processes, and procedures based on criteria that represent each student's attainment of content knowledge and skills. These policies, processes, and procedures are implemented in most or all schools across grade levels and courses. Most stakeholders are aware of the policies, processes, and procedures. The policies, processes, and procedures may or may not be evaluated. Sample communications to stakeholders about grading and reporting District quality control procedures including the monitoring of grading practices across all schools Sample report cards for each program or grade level and for all courses and programs Policies, processes, and procedures on grading and reporting 3.11 All staff members participate in a continuous program of professional learning. Survey results Level 2 Most staff members participate in a program of professional learning that is aligned with the system's purpose and direction. Professional development is based on needs of the system. The program builds capacity among staff members who participate. The program is regularly evaluated for effectiveness. District quality control procedures showing implementation plan for professional development for district and school staff District professional development plan involving the district and all schools Brief explanation of alignment between professional learning and identified needs Crosswalk between professional learning and district purpose and direction 3.12 The system and its schools provide and coordinate learning support services to meet the unique learning needs of students. Schedules, lesson plans, or example student learning plans showing the implementation of learning support services Level 2 System and school personnel use data to identify unique learning needs of special populations of students based on proficiency and/or other learning needs (such as second languages). System and school personnel are familiar with research related to unique characteristics of learning (such as learning styles, multiple intelligences, personality type indicators) and provide or coordinate related learning support services to students within these special populations. List of learning support services and student population served by such services Data used to identify unique learning needs of students Page 17

20 Reflect upon your responses to each of the indicators and performance levels by considering and responding to the following questions when drafting your narrative response. Use language from the performance level descriptions to guide your writing. Cite sources of evidence the External Review team members may be interested in reviewing. The vision of (OCPS) is to be the top producer of successful students in the nation. Our mission is to accomplish this with the support and involvement of families and the community. This vision, along with the increasing rigor of the Florida State Standards, requires ongoing collaboration between Teaching and Learning, which includes district leaders in Curriculum and Instruction, Assessment, Guidance, Professional Development and Digital Learning, and all school leaders. That collaboration is transparent, and there is an increasing effort to ensure all stakeholders are aware of how we support teacher effectiveness and student learning across all grade levels. Over the last three years, Curriculum and Instruction and Digital Learning have strengthened their partnership with the Scope and Sequence and Measurement Topic Plan (MTP) project. District instructional coaches have created documents that outline the scope of instruction for thousands of courses, grades K-12, in every content area. They then created MTPs for each unit of instruction for a large percentage of these courses. Each MTP includes learning goals and scales, essential standards, supporting standards, academic vocabulary, common misconceptions and digital teaching resources for teacher use. Digital teaching resources are accessed through Safari Montage, which houses digital curriculum and resources for all standards taught. Assessment uses the scope and sequence documents to create outlines for common final exams. These outlines play the role of test item specifications and are designed to provide teachers with the essential information necessary to prepare their students for a common final exam. These documents should not be considered the total curriculum or take the place of district curriculum documents. OCPS has made strong improvements over the last few years in ensuring the system's curriculum, instructional design and assessment practices guide and ensure teacher effectiveness and student learning. Curriculum revisions begin the process as described in the MTP revision document. These revisions are done through feedback from teachers and administrators along with results from statewide and benchmark assessments. Currently, assessments are built as displayed in the item writing presentation. Instruction is then supported through targeted professional development and training throughout the year. OCPS can make improvements to this process by creating a stronger link between instructional practice data, as measured by our instructional framework (Marzano), and curriculum and assessment, along with receiving more structured feedback from teachers and administrators. The Curriculum and Instruction, Professional Development and Assessment departments have worked together through the strategic planning process to build strategies to improve monitoring and adjust these systems over the next five years. The core of our business exists where teachers meet the learner in the classroom every day. In OCPS, teachers engage students in higherorder thinking lessons and activities that integrate technology, collaborative projects, hands-on-learning and authentic learning tasks. The documents provided here represent some of the innovative and data-driven lessons that OCPS teachers deliver to our students every day. Working with a continuous improvement model, OCPS provides professional development to keep teachers current on instructional strategies, giving teachers up-to-date techniques and strategies that focus on improving student achievement. OCPS has implemented the Learning Sciences International teacher observation and assessment tool to enhance and improve instruction. This tool allows for peer and supervisor coaching feedback that is directly tied to classroom instruction. Teachers are provided additional tools to better understand their curriculum and instructional practices. Curriculum maps and observation protocols provide support and direction for the classroom teacher. District leadership and area superintendents often meet at schools where observations are conducted using the instructional framework. Additionally, professional development on the coaching and observation model, as well as the core curriculum content, provide teachers with many opportunities to expand their subject knowledge and enhance their instructional practices, ultimately improving student achievement. Page 18

21 In order to sustain impactful curriculum, instruction and assessment practices, we have created a K-12 Literacy Plan which outlines expectations for instructional models, progress monitoring and core and supplemental materials. This plan is easily accessible to all teachers through the district's Instructional Management System (IMS) page. Teaching and Learning teams collaborate often, and meet officially once a month to ensure we are all working toward one common goal: to be the top producer of successful students in the nation. All OCPS instructional staff are expected to participate in collaborative learning structures that meet both informally and formally throughout the school year. Additional training will help ensure this collaborative structure is used with fidelity at the school level. This process of Professional Learning Communities (PLC) is modeled through a coaching cycle partnership between the district's Curriculum and Instruction department and the district's geographic learning communities. All learning communities are supported by a team of coaches, including elementary English Language Arts (ELA) and Math/ Science; secondary Reading, ELA, Math and Science; as well as English Language Learners (ELL); Exceptional Student Education (ESE); Multi-tiered System of Supports (MTSS); Professional Learning Community (PLC); and Marzano. Various funding sources have been secured to provide professional development opportunities to promote the PLC model within our district. The intent of the PLC model is to increase teacher effectiveness and support student learning, along with closing the achievement gap among our struggling sub-populations of students. Additional training and support is being added to the mentoring, coaching and induction programs. Ongoing training is provided to support the implementation of an instructional process that promotes student learning. In order to improve the effectiveness of our efforts to engage all stakeholders in our students' education and keep them informed of student learning progress, we continue to communicate with families. We want to ensure that everyone is aware of, and encourage their participation in, school volunteer opportunities, the Parent Academy, school events, open houses and online parent resources. We use a variety of communication methods to ensure that parents and guardians are aware - and to encourage their use - of the online digital gradebook (ProgressBook), and are informed of progress report and report card dates. All parents have access to their student's Launchpad site. When a student logs into Launch, they immediately see icons with hyperlinks for every program relevant to that student's grade level, school and content areas. Although a number of schools have organized mentoring and support programs for students, a more formalized approach to ensuring all students have an advocate would be beneficial. Partnerships with programs such as Elevate Orlando, COMPACT and City Year Orlando are benefiting a number of our students; a more systematic approach would guarantee stronger relationships between even more students and adults. Page 19

22 Resources and Support Systems The system has resources and provides services in all schools that support its purpose and direction to ensure success for all students. Overall Rating: The system engages in a systematic process to recruit, employ, and retain a sufficient number of qualified professional and support staff to fulfill their roles and responsibilities and support the purpose and direction of the system, individual schools, and educational programs. Survey results District budgets or financial plans for the last three years Level 3 Policies, processes, and procedures ensure that system and school leaders have access to, hire, place, and retain qualified professional support staff. System and school leaders systematically determine the number of personnel necessary to fill all the roles and responsibilities necessary to support purposes, educational programs, and continuous improvement throughout the district. Sustained fiscal resources are available to fund positions critical to achieve the purpose and direction of the system, individual schools, and educational programs. District quality assurance procedures for monitoring qualified staff across all schools School budgets or financial plans for last three years Assessments of staffing needs Documentation of highly qualified staff Policies, processes, procedures and other documentation related to the hiring, placement and retention of professional and support staff for the district and schools 4.2 Instructional time, material resources, and fiscal resources are sufficient to support the purpose and direction of the system, individual schools, educational programs, and system operations. Examples of school schedules District quality assurance procedures showing district oversight of schools pertaining to Level 3 school resources Instructional time, material resources, and fiscal resources are focused on supporting the purpose and direction of the system, its schools, educational programs, and system operations. Instructional time is protected in policy and practice. System and school leaders work to secure material and fiscal resources to meet the needs of all students and improve the effectiveness of the system. System and school leaders demonstrate that instructional time, material resources, and fiscal resources are allocated so that all students have equitable opportunities to attain challenging learning expectations. Efforts toward the continuous improvement of instruction and operations include achieving the purpose and direction of the system and its schools. Examples of efforts of school leaders to secure necessary material and fiscal resources Examples of school calendars Alignment of district budget with district purpose and direction District strategic plan showing resources support for district Page 20

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