Earlier this summer, Linda Uveges, Assistant Superintendent of the Sheffield-Sheffield Lake school district purchased the Keeping Learning on Track™ (KLT) formative assessment through teacher professional development solution to implement in her schools. This and subsequent blogs will highlight her decision process for selecting KLT and the implementation in her schools, and highlight some classroom outcomes from teachers and students.
Linda had previously gathered her top teachers – her “cream of the crop” as she puts it – to help formulate ideas that could help improve the teacher professional development process. When one of them suggested KLT as a possible area of focus, she put it to a vote, and with unanimous approval from her top teacher team she began the process of implementation.
The three things that she liked about the KLT teacher professional development solution:
1. It’s a two-year program. As she says, “they [teachers] know it’s not going away so they become committed. It’s our teacher professional development focus for two years.” While she feels confident that the program will continue beyond the two-year plan, having people buy in for two years generates a level of commitment that ensures it will be used.
2. The layout of the program. “The tools and resources are incredible.” The KLT practice contains everything needed to implement a formative assessment teacher professional development program, from creating and running teacher learning communities, to formative assessment strategies and ideas to implement in the classroom.
3. The focus on formative assessment. “Working on just solely formative assessment and the research behind it is just incredible.”
At the end of the KLT kickoff meeting with her teacher leaders, she employed the “Exit Ticket” formative assessment technique to gauge what perceptions they had with the program (love the irony), and the responses spoke for themselves:
What went well for you today?
> Working together, ideas, questions, hands on
> Good pacing, not overwhelming, appreciate materials
> Organization of the two years
> The group openly shared and worked well together. We worked through all of the activities in a very positive way. We met our learning targets (based on their exit tickets)
> Ideas, techniques, good discussion and exactly the way we practiced!
> Appears as though teachers enjoyed learning about the different formative assessment techniques to implement in their classrooms
> Participation, cooperation and pacing
> I did it and I’m done! YAY!
> Group work, collaboration
> Already familiar, table discussions, presenters were informative
> We liked the teacher-driven, structured program
> Liked that there were concrete strategies, presenters were punctual and stuck to their schedule, very well-organized, loved all the charts, brevity of meeting and thanks for the candy!
In future blogs we’ll discuss how the teacher leaders built their professional development teams, and how formative assessment strategies and techniques are being received in the classroom. Until then we’d love to hear about your teacher professional development experiences, so drop a comment below.
If you’d like more information about KLT, please feel free to contact us.