Valuable data

Valuable performance data

Student performance data must have value for the team.

Performance data is not right or wrong. It is either valuable or not. The value comes from the data’s ability to answer questions about students or instructors.

Assessments should be designed to provide valuable data for your team.

Valuable performance data answers questions about student learning, provides feedback on growth, and gives insight to the effectiveness of instructional practice.

What do we need to learn about our students?

Useful performance data comes from planning instruction and assessment for a specific reason.

Performance data sources:

  • Assessments
  • Curriculum-embedded work
  • Writing
  • Tasks requiring students to show thinking

Data for instruction, students, or curriculum

Effectiveness of instructional practice

Implement common instructional methods or techniques with an activity or assessment to measure effectiveness. A test or task using teaching styles and materials similar to instruction is instructional sensitive.

Performance tasks or writing prompts generate better insight into instruction than a multiple choice assessment. Students showing thinking provides valuable insight into teaching effectiveness.

More information from student skills

Critical skills and knowledge provide a base for future learning and are necessary to move students along a learning progression.

Common formative assessments do not have to be formal, just designed to show how the students apply or use their skills. In some content areas, this requires action, either writing or a presentation.

Curriculum quality or effectiveness

  • Is the curriculum is working?
  • How does it compare to the previous material for the same learning outcome?
  • Is the rigor and complexity meeting our needs?

New textbooks and material bring new resources, with little real-world data on their quality and effectiveness. Until the students and teachers use the documents, it is hard to measure their value and efficiency.

Online assessment platforms make it possible to compare current results against previous data from similar standards, and provides a baseline to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of new material.

Professional development worth

Teachers trained in new techniques implement them and administer a common assignment or assessment. This data provides feedback for benefits of future use, more training, and for professional development providers.

District program participant data

Are programs working?

  • English Learner
  • Special Education
  • Intervention
  • Afterschool

Assessment or task designed with …

  • current instructional standards
  • focus on program participants
  • administered to all students
  • perspective on effectiveness and gaps

Monitor students after intervention or support

Often students with previous performance issues have growth, are exited from intervention or support, and then return to struggling.

Do you have a system in place to monitor students that exit intervention and moved back into regular instruction?

What issues will trigger additional support for these students?

  • Low grades
  • Skills deficiencies
  • Knowledge deficiency in content areas
  • Weak aggregate performance data
  • Poor attendance

Intervention Gaps

Gap prevention

Monitor gaps between intended and actual instruction

  • Learning gaps
  • Instructional gaps
  • Assessment gaps

Teaching and learning never finish.

Intended plans do not always match actual learning and instruction.

Embrace gaps

Embrace instructional and learning differences, and use them for opportunities to improve. Most holes take time to close.

Look for gaps

  • Plans vs. actual instruction
  • Intended outcomes vs. student needs
  • Performance goals vs. performance data
  • Exemplar work vs. actual work product
  • Intervention vs. long range learning goals

Instructional gaps

  • Examine instructional quality and practice to improve not punish
  • Non-punitive, actionable feedback builds confidence
  • Consistent quality of learning opportunities and resources across a team should be a reality not just a goal
  • Provide targeted professional development based on current instructional needs

Administrators help reduce gaps

Activities outside of teacher control impact instruction, time, and planning.

  • Keep learning interruptions to a minimum
  • Know team or department goals
  • Support not just monitor goals
  • Support consistent quality of instruction
  • Reduce material and access issues


What learning gaps do we need to close in our classrooms?

Classroom interventions bridge gaps.

Advantage of teacher-designed interventions

  • fresh performance data
  • data from classroom builds confidence
  • actual student work
  • teacher knowledge of their students
  • efficient use of instructional time
  • balances data and experience

Performance data confidence comes from consistent implementation, quality assessments, and teacher input.

Which students need intervention now?

Team or classroom designed interventions should target manageable gaps.

Students with long-term needs benefit from targeted instructional practice and support from district programs and services.

What intervention should we use? What materials or resources are available?

  1. Reason for intervention
  2. Intervention method and practice
  3. Rigor and complexity
  4. Curriculum and resources

Clear outcomes

A high value intended result for the student and teacher.

  1. Improve long-term student learning
  2. Student benefits
  3. Teacher benefits

Do we understand the process and intended results of the intervention?

Targeted results keep a focus on the process and students.

  • plan for implementation and instruction
  • keep all activities and conversations focused
  • avoid creeping to additional issues

Interventions grow out of control without a strict focus on the intended target.

Who delivers the intervention?

Every person that interacts with the student intervention needs to understand the plan.

Is the intervention working?

Assessment or evaluation models

Formative assessment

  • Team or teacher created
  • Measure progress
  • Measure gain over time
  • Match instructional rigor
  • Align to current and past standards

Unique perspective of effectiveness

When all students, even those not in the intervention, take an assessment, you get a unique perspective. It allows for the comparison of intervention students to those not participating. It is an excellent way to check on progress to closing a gap.

Exit or end intervention

Plan for student exit, and program completion. Release students once they demonstrate the skills and thinking necessary to move back into the regular classroom learning progression.