Illinois Record of Service
Great Lakes West State Manager: Monique M. Chism, Ph.D.
Great Lakes West has a collaborative, consultative approach to technical assistance. Work within identified focus areas often develops over time. As work develops or state and national priorities change, Great Lakes West may need to adapt its work to meet state needs. Following is an update on recent work with the Illinois State Board of Education.
Center on Innovation & Improvement
Academy of Pacesetting States
Great Lakes West staff continues to work with the Illinois Pacesetter team as they refine the
state plan they began in Princeton, New Jersey, in July 2009. The Illinois team continues to
receive support from Great Lakes West and the Center on Innovation & Improvement (CII) to
engage in monthly planning discussions and participate in distance learning opportunities with
eight other states. In November, the distance learning session focused on differentiating supports and interventions in the statewide system of support. CII used Oklahoma’s approach as an exemplar and shared information about how states are moving toward differentiated systems of support that vary the type, intensity, and duration of assistance. CII also shared two metrics that can be used to gauge the needs of a district or a school: the district’s or school’s current level of performance as measured by student learning outcomes and the district’s or school’s particular operational strengths and weaknesses as determined by diagnosis of both disaggregated student-learning data and patterns of practice in the operation of the district or school. Using these metrics, CII classifies schools as follows:
- On a satisfactory trajectory of continuous improvement
- In need of rapid improvement
- In need of turnaround
- Candidate for closure because of persistent low performance and lack of response to prior supports and interventions
In January, Great Lakes West staff designed a full-day meeting to engage the Illinois team in conversations about differentiating supports and interventions within their system of support.
National Common Core State Initiative
In November, the South Suburban Curriculum Council hosted its Seventh Annual Invitational at District 218 in Oak Lawn, Illinois. The council invited Illinois State Manager Monique Chism, Ph.D., and Mark Williams, division administrator for career and technical education at the Illinois State Board of Education, to talk to a group of more than 100 high school and junior high school administrators about Illinois involvement with the Common Core State Standards Initiative.
In June 2009, Illinois signed on with 48 other states (including Wisconsin) and U.S. territories to join a state-led process to develop a common core of state standards in English language arts and mathematics for Grades K–12. The Common Core State Standards Initiative is jointly led by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and the Council of Chief State School Officers, in partnership with Achieve, ACT, and the College Board. These standards will be research and evidence based, internationally benchmarked, and aligned with college and work expectations and will focus on rigorous content and skills.