[Assessment 1534] Re: Getting staff used to using data

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Jackie Coelho jackie.coelho at gmail.com
Tue Dec 16 08:55:56 EST 2008


Barry,
Thanks for explaining that. I think there are so many variables that any
study of this nature needs to be considered very carefully. For example, of
what quality was the professional development? Was the information in the
professional development used by the instructor? How many of the students in
a particular class would have dropped out regardless of what the instructor
does due to life circumstances? Is is possible that the professional
development had a negative impact?
I am not a statistician, but I imagine some of these variables could be
accounted for with a large enough sample. However, my question would be, how
large would the sample have to be?
Teaching is both an art and a science. The science part can be measured.
The art part cannot. I personally think we need to be constantly mindful of
the art of it all.
Creating a community within a classroom, a place where students feel
connected and where they believe others care and support them, others
including their classmates, goes further than any one method or approach to
teaching material.


Jackie Coelho
ABE Instructor


On 12/15/08, Bakin, Barry <barry.bakin at lausd.net> wrote:

>

> The attempt to correlate student attendance and retention with teacher

> participation in professional development is still in very preliminary

> stages and a professional statistician might say that we're going about it

> in the wrong way but one aspect of what is being discussed relates to a

> "retention" score being looked at that is derived from the total number of

> hours all students enrolled in a class could potentially have attended

> during a certain time period (if all of those students had attended every

> hour from the time they had enrolled to the time they left the course or

> the specified time period was reached) divided by the actual hours those

> same students attended. So let's say that some 42 students could have

> attended a maximum total of 3000 hours of class time during the time period

> being examined. The actual attendance of those students during that time

> period was 1500 hours. 1500 total actual hours divided by 3000 total

> possible hours gives a 50 percent figure. By doing the same calculation for

> every class offered, a division-wide "average retention" figure can be

> established for a particular type of class.

>

>

> The idea is that by identifying teachers who have taken staff development

> courses, and then looking at their individual average retention figure "pre"

> and "post" training, the effect of the training on an individual teacher's

> retention might be demonstrated and in turn the effect on all teachers who

> have attended trainings as a group. I'm not sure what variables other than

> the training are being considered. Again, these ideas are all preliminary

> and experimental so they're not for wider dissemination. It would obviously

> be preferable to have a controlled double-blind study but that seems to be

> out of reach at the moment…

>

>

>

> Barry

>

>

>

>

> ------------------------------

>

> *From:* assessment-bounces at nifl.gov [mailto:assessment-bounces at nifl.gov] *On

> Behalf Of *Nancy R Faux/AC/VCU

> *Sent:* Thursday, December 11, 2008 11:23 AM

> *To:* The Assessment Discussion List

> *Subject:* [Assessment 1521] Re: Getting staff used to using data

>

>

>

>

> Hi Barry,

>

> Could you please explain how you are correlating student attendance and

> retention with teacher participation in professional development, or the

> workshops that you offer? We are exploring ways of doing this, also.

>

> Nancy

>

> *********************************************************

> Nancy R. Faux

> ESOL Specialist

> Virginia Adult Learning Resource Center

> Virginia Commonwealth University

> 3600 W. Broad Street, Suite 669

> Richmond, VA 23230-4930

> nfaux at vcu.edu

> http://www.valrc.org

> 1-800-237-0178 <http://www.valrc.org/>

>

> *"Bakin, Barry" <barry.bakin at lausd.net>*

> Sent by: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov

>

> 12/11/2008 12:21 PM

>

> Please respond to

> The Assessment Discussion List <assessment at nifl.gov>

>

> To

>

> "The Assessment Discussion List" <assessment at nifl.gov>

>

> cc

>

>

>

> Subject

>

> [Assessment 1510] Re: Getting staff used to using data

>

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> Data is not just for classroom instructional staff to analyze. Our staff

> meeting yesterday(of teacher trainers responsible for staff

> development)focused on using attendance and ADA statistics collected since

> 1999 as a way to determine whether or not our team's staff development

> efforts over the last several years has resulted in increases in student

> attendance and retention by students whose teachers have taken staff

> development workshops. We have an immediate and pressing interest for doing

> so, as expected district-wide budget shortfalls of millions of dollars are

> leading some at the district level to advocate for the elimination of

> staff-development programs in the coming year. We obviously feel that

> teachers who improve their skills will retain students better than those who

> don't, but we'd like to be able to point to data that demonstrates that.

>

> Barry Bakin

> ESL Teacher Adviser

> Division of Adult and Career Education

> Los Angeles Unified School District

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