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What is your data telling you?

Educational Support Services

Traci Theis

Senior Program Coordinator

It is that time of year when the state releases the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessment Data for 2016-2017. With the release of the SBAC Data, school districts, principals, teachers and others look to see how their students and schools did in relation to others.  District Assessment and Accountability staff begins to look at and analyze the data over time from grade to grade and cohort to cohort of students.  This data is an opportunity to not only analyze student growth in learning, but also an opportunity to analyze academic programs and previous changes at the systems level.  We as a community of Data Enthusiasts need to ask, “What is the data telling us?” As we answer this question, it’s important to identify how we might examine the data to inform Teaching and Learning.  One such protocol is:  (Data Analysis Template)

  • Research: using the data sources available, report the facts. Look at student groups. Look for trends or areas of concern. Look for areas of success.  This is an objective data discovery.
  • Recall: Focusing on the prior school year(s), recall the realities of classroom, school, district program, practice and policies. What happened? Facts only – no conjectures.
  • Reflect: Connect performance with prior year practices, programs and policies. Consider possible reasons. Be honest about what occurred last year and how that may have impacted the performance that you observe.
  • Respond: What might be some possible ways to move forward? These responses would tie directly to what was discovered in the reflection process.

Responding to the data includes how we will share this data with our communities, our parents, our board members, our students.  The lens in which we examine this data is what drives our LCAP and the story we want to relay about how, what and why we choose the path to Teaching and Learning for all Students. Assessments and Data Driven Conversations: Connecting Summative Assessments to Improving Teaching and Learning

Terri Gibbs-Burke, B.A. Math, M.A. Education, M.A. Ed.Admin.

Teacher on Special Assignment, Math/Accountability
Educational Support Services Department
San Luis Obispo County Office of Education

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