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School Redesign

Changes in ELT Site Visit Report Structure

To:ELT District and School Leaders
From:Cliff Chuang, Associate Commissioner
Date:September 14, 2015

In an on-going effort to provide clear and meaningful feedback to ELT schools and districts, DESE will modify site visit procedures in two key respects for the coming school year (2015-2016).

First, our site visit reports will now reflect ratings, as opposed to "Strengths" and "Areas for Improvement" for each of the eight (8) ELT Expectations for Implementation. Beginning in the upcoming academic year, we will institute the following rating system to give the field a better indication of the quality of their ELT implementation observed at the time of our site visit:

ExemplaryThe school fully and consistently meets the expectation and is a potential exemplar in this area.
Meets ExpectationThe school generally meets the expectation with no more than minor concern(s) noted.
Some Improvement NeededThe school meets some aspects of the expectation but not others with no more than moderate concern(s) noted.
Major Improvement NeededThe school falls far below the expectation and significant concern(s) are noted.

Site visit teams will continue to generate findings supported by evidence, which will inform the rating assigned. It is our hope that this system will more directly communicate how each school measures against expected high-quality implementation of each component of ELT.
Second, in order to allow the team adequate time to review the data collected during the visit, corroborate the accuracy of each finding, and support the rating assigned to each Expectation, we will now provide a more limited report-out at the close of each visit. Ratings will appear in the written report only, and the team leader will communicate findings solely on the following Expectations for Implementation at the close of the visit:

  • Expectation I — ELT design is driven by focused schoolwide priorities.
  • Expectation VI — Additional time is used to enhance school culture.
  • Expectation VII — School leadership is focused and collaborative.

The above expectations are those which, after careful consideration and considerable discussion, both internally and with several school leaders, our experienced site visit leaders believe are most easily and consistently observable during the site visit. We believe that initial findings on these three Expectations strikes a balance between giving schools a strong sense of what the team saw during the visit, and allowing time for an in-depth analysis of the information collected during the visit for those Expectations that may require a more nuanced review of multiple sources of evidence before confirming and reporting findings.

We intend to provide further information on these changes by hosting a webinar, which will introduce the new report template that incorporates ratings. We will provide information on the date and time of the webinar in the coming weeks.

We believe that these ratings will serve to eliminate ambiguity and be helpful in interpreting the findings and narrative portions of the report for all stakeholders.

Last Updated: September 14, 2015

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