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Educator Effectiveness

Equity Roadmap: Potential Next Steps after the Student Learning Experience Report

We know that teachers are the leading in-school factor in student success. An equity gap occurs when historically disadvantaged student groups are less likely than their peers to be assigned to teachers who are experienced, in-field, or highly rated.

How to use this resource:

After using the Student Learning Experience (SLE) Summary Report to identify equity gaps, this website provides starting points for addressing the gaps. Each link leads to an optional template for planning and tracking the work of developing, implementing, and monitoring equity strategies. After reviewing the general equity guidance below, users can click on the table for suggestions and resources tailored to specific types of equity gaps.

Successfully taking steps to address equity gaps does not always mean eliminating the gaps in the SLE report within a year. Rather, the aim is to ameliorate any disparities in student groups' learning experiences and outcomes. For example, if a school usually has many inexperienced teachers, leaders may plan to decrease the number of new teachers in the long term—but in the short term, they may work with teacher preparation programs to train the best possible new teachers. Thus, students of inexperienced teachers are more likely to have a high-quality learning experience.

  1. Use additional data

    Your district may have data that is more up-to-date than that found in DESE reports. To augment the SLE Summary Report, consider using recent local data, like new evaluations or local benchmark assessments.

    • Analyze SLE detailed reports at the school level, for all students, and for those in groups experiencing equity gaps.
    • Determine whether equity gaps mirror any other disparities between student groups, such as MCAS or benchmark scores; SGP; graduation rates; advanced course enrollment; discipline rates; attendance; or feedback on school climate surveys, if available.
    • Identify whether some groups of students are concentrated in certain types of classes, and whether inexperienced, out-of-field, or lower rated teachers are disproportionately teaching certain types of classes.
    • Use Resource Allocation and District Action Reports (RADAR) to learn more about how your district allocates people, time, and money. Compare your use of resources to other districts, or to prior years. Reports can help determine:
      • Does resource use align with district priorities?
      • How can we allocate resources to further our equity goals?
      • How can we allocate resources to develop a cost-neutral strategy to address equity gaps?

  2. Ask self-assessment/stakeholder engagement questions to explore root causes

    • How are students assigned to teachers each year?
    • What structures in the scheduling process influence assignment?
    • What are we prioritizing in hiring new teachers?
    • How does the distribution of our educator evaluation ratings compare to gaps in performance?
    • Could root causes of gaps be different in elementary and secondary schools? For example, class assignment often occurs differently in high school. Tracked classes are more common in secondary schools.
    • How do schools decide which teachers have which classes? For example, are certain types of teachers more likely to teach advanced, inclusion, or SEI classes? Does this vary across schools?

  3. Develop strategy starting points & monitor progress

    • Refine approach to course assignment, so that all students experience the same types of teachers.
      • Share the detailed SLE Report with guidance counselors, school leaders, and anyone else involved in student-teacher assignment, and ensure they understand how to apply the data.
    • Support pathways to increase enrollment of students in poverty, students of color, English learners, and students with disabilities in a range of classes, including advanced classes.
    • Develop a clear process for monitoring progress, with short-term and long-term metrics.
      • The How Do We Know? Initiative provides resources to help districts select strategies that are likely to succeed, and measure the strategies' impact.

Equity Roadmap: Next Steps to Close Equity Gaps

Suggested Strategies for Specific Equity Gaps: One-Page Roadmaps

All one-pagers and templates

Users may also view one-page resources for each equity gap, and optional templates for planning strategies to address equity gaps, together in a single document .

Last Updated: June 3, 2020

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
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Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.