Equitable Teacher Distribution – Suggested Strategies for Districts 6.3.1 Provide specialized training for teachers working in challenging classrooms. Some examples follow.
Oklahoma sponsored Dr. Joe Johnson June 27th and 28th, 2006 to work specifically with teachers and administrators with effective strategies to improve student achievement aligned to Oklahoma’s Nine Essential Elements research-based document.
Oklahoma provided professional development with Dr. Melvina Phillips, National Association of Secondary School Principals practitioner and author of the book, Creating a Culture of Literacy: A Guide for Middle and High School Principals. Dr. Phillips will return October 4, 2006 to provide interactive professional development for secondary educators including principals and teacher teams to provide effective reading opportunities for adolescents.
On July 10, 2006, Larry Bell, noted for providing strategies to close the achievement gap provided professional development available to all teachers and administrators.
Oklahoma State Department of Education will provide a series of six School Improvement professional development conferences, beginning in October, 2006, with a focus on helping all schools operate at advanced levels of teacher effectiveness. Dr. Robert Marzano will share his research-based strategies, What Works in Schools. All schools participating will take the online survey and data will be analyzed and returned to determine professional development needs. Books to be used in this professional development include: What Works in Schools; Building Background Knowledge; and Building Academic Vocabulary.
Improve working conditions in high-need schools so they can compete for the best teachers.
The Title I School Support teams visit the school improvement sites in Years 2, 3, 4, and 5 to provide support and resources for high-need schools.
The two largest school districts in the state of Oklahoma, have implemented successful strategies for teachers and students including the use of instructional facilitators in the areas of mathematics and reading.
Provide strong principal, mentoring, resources, assistance in working with parents and the community and structure for an environment for learning.
Oklahoma provides all administrators training in the State Standards for the evaluation of teachers.
Curriculum Walk Through Training is available upon request from the Oklahoma Office of Standards and Curriculum. Most of the school improvement sites have received this training as well as all Reading First sites.
Best Practices examples have been the focus of multiple videoconferences from Title I Distinguished Schools; Academic Achievement Award schools; and one of five 2006 Excellence Award winners of the National Center for Urban School Transformation, Linwood Elementary School, Oklahoma City Public Schools. These identified schools provide first hand information for districts on mentoring, resources, parents and community involvement and how to create professional learning communities.
Principals’ Leadership Academy is a series of five professional development seminars designed to help PreK-12 principals enhance their leadership and management skills.
New Principal Assistance Program based on national standards provides skills necessary for successful school leadership.
Oklahoma Educators Leadership Academies provide principals and superintendents high quality leadership training in the summer with four follow-up sessions in the fall and spring.
Use the Oklahoma Nine Essential Elements document to guide LEAs and schools in promoting a culture for teacher and student learning in all schools but particularly in school improvement schools. This document supports not only teacher quality but teacher effectiveness. This document has been distributed to every superintendent and principal and is available online. The Oklahoma Nine Essential Elements research-based document is used to guide the process of the School Support Teams that coach and support sites and districts identified for school improvement. Numerous presentations have been made for the use of the Nine Essential Elements rubric including July 7, 2006 at the State Superintendent’s Leadership Conference.
Oklahoma will be piloting a new technology, the Logi Tech pen with the Nine Essential Elements document for use by the School Support Team members to document observations and for writing recommended strategies and resources for School Improvement sites they are coaching.
6.4 Does the plan provide evidence for the probable success of the strategies it includes?
The strategies implemented to ensure equitable distribution of experienced teachers in high-minority and high-poverty schools are research-based and have proven successful across the nation.
Oklahoma Title II, Part A Equity Plan Requirement 6: Listed below are some new strategies for Oklahoma. The State will be gathering baseline data during the 2006-2007 school-year and will continue to gather qualitative and quantitative feedback from districts implementing these strategies over the next five years to determine effectiveness with Oklahoma schools.
In addition, some strategies listed below have been in place in Oklahoma for a number of years and data has been collected relative to these programs and strategies. All these strategies have been identified and implemented in Oklahoma to address teacher quality, equity, recruitment and retention.
6.5 Does the plan indicate that the SEA will examine the issue of equitable teacher assignment when it monitors LEAs and how this will be done?
The data in Chart at the beginning of Requirement 6, shows the distribution of highly qualified teachers in high-minority and high-poverty schools as well as the distribution of novice teachers and experienced teachers in high-needs schools. OSDE will continue to monitor the equitable teacher assignments and provide districts with recommended strategies to ensure equitable distribution. The distribution data will be provided to districts for the district and site level determinations of teacher assignments.
Oklahoma will conduct a review of the current data (05-06 school year) for each district and site to determine each districts’ current status. Oklahoma program specialists will analyze available data to determine highly qualified needs as well as trends in rural, high-poverty and school improvement schools. Districts that have been identified for on-site visits will be notified and required to provide documentation for district and individual teacher plans. As part of the Consolidated Monitoring process, Program Specialists will:
meet with district staff to obtain information and documentation and to verify district data
review and verify districts data on teacher assignments to ensure equitable distribution of highly qualified teachers through the schools;
conduct on-site visits to obtain information, review records, verity teacher and site data; and
complete report summary noting any findings, recommendations, or commendations;
Program Specialists will monitor the implementation of the District and teachers Highly Qualified Plans and provide technical assistance as needed for districts to attain 100% highly qualified.
Each district is required to submit Consolidated Application for funds. The Office of Grant Management and Office of Grant Planning are responsible for reviewing each application to ensure the following: Target federal funds to high-needs schools within the districts.
Each application is in compliance with the required federal and state program requirements.
Each application includes sufficient information on the programs and activities that will be used to ensure that all teachers meet the HQ requirements.
Each application includes sufficient information to ensure that the districts has allocated sufficient financial and personnel resources required to implement the programs and activities in order to meet highly qualified performance goals.
Each application should target funds to the high needs schools within a district includes information on the district’s progress in meeting the prior year highly qualified goals (Sample Attached).
The OSDE provides information about resources including programs and professional development opportunities that support highly qualified in all districts. It is then the district’s responsibility to make choices when placing and hiring teachers that take advantage of statewide resources that may help increase the number of highly qualified teachers in these districts. These resources and opportunities are included in the equity plan. The Oklahoma State Department of Education will work with all school districts so that poor or minority children are not taught by inexperienced, unqualified, or out of-field teachers at higher rates than are other children. This entire document provides the components of the OSDE written equity action plan for ensuring that poor or minority children are not taught by inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-field teachers at higher rates than are other children. The process that the OSDE uses includes the specific programs, strategies, systems and legislation within the three identified initiatives described in the previous sections of this document: #1: Publicly report progress of meeting annual measurable objectives in the percentage of highly qualified teachers at each LEA and school and in the percentage of teachers who are receiving high-quality professional development to enable such teachers to become highly qualified and highly effective classroom teachers. #2: Conduct effective high quality professional development activities. #3: Recruit and hire highly qualified teachers, including those licensed or certified through alternative routes and retain highly qualified teachers. In summary, many strategies for districts are available on the State Department of Education Web site and provided as an attachment to communicate with all districts. In addition, in October, 2006 videoconferences will focus on strategies for districts that will ensure equitable teacher distribution to ensure that poor or minority children are not taught by inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-field teachers at higher rates than are other children. The OSDE is committed to ensure every child in Oklahoma is taught by a highly qualified teacher and will continue to provide technical assistance and monitor progress in implementing those plans.