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Areas of Expertise

 

An Inquiry-Based Approach to District Improvement
Professional Services

Learning Point Associates works with school districts to build their capacity to implement and sustain systemic change with the goal of increased student achievement. Our district improvement methodology offers a comprehensive approach to examining the alignment of curriculum, instruction, and assessment in one or more content areas for a school district, along with other key factors. The resulting data are reviewed and co-interpreted with the district’s administrators and teachers to identify key areas for improvement. We then work with districts to build action plans to carry out the recommendations from the audit.

Objectives

The core focus of the process is the alignment of the written, taught, and tested curriculum. We also investigate professional development, leadership, and structural supports that impact student achievement. Our theory of action is that daily classroom activities have the primary influence on instruction and achievement, while building- and district-level activities play an important but secondary role.

Approach

Learning Point Associates works collaboratively with clients to ensure that the process meets the agreed-upon objectives and builds client capacity. Our approach consists of the following four phases:

Phase 1: Planning
Learning Point Associates staff meet with key district staff to review and refine the objectives (essential questions), determine the data needed, and establish key dates and communication methods.

Phase 2: Data Collection and Analysis
Learning Point Associates staff and consultants collect and analyze the data needed to answer the essential questions. We typically collect data from interviews, observations, and focus group as well as review the written curriculum, student assessment data, and other key documents. We also use the Surveys of Enacted Curriculum, an online tool to collect information on instruction.

Phase 3: Co-interpretationSM and Recommendations
Facilitators from Learning Point Associates lead a group of district staff through a detailed and structured process to understand and interpret the data. Together, we review the data, determine key findings, generate hypotheses to account for the root causes, and make recommendations for improvement. Because the process is collaborative, the district provides its input into the shaping of the recommendations that guide the action-planning process.

Phase 4: Action-Planning Support
Learning Point Associates staff provide support for translating the recommendations into action plans that can drive district and school improvement. We offer a planning process, templates, advice, and facilitated planning sessions. Our support promotes the development of a three-year action plan with Year 1 mapped out in detail, including fiscal requirements and success indicators.

Clients

Past clients include the U.S. Virgin Islands; New York school districts in Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester, New York City, and other small districts; and districts in Indiana. Currently, New York and Indiana offer our district analytics for improvement as a No Child Left Behind (NCLB) compliance option to districts in corrective action.

For additional information, please contact Learning Point Associates at 800-356-2735 or info@learningpt.org.

 



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