Data Driven Decision Making
In today's professional development meeting, the administrative team rolled out their shiny new toy--Data Walls. We listened to an hour and a half lesson on the how and why of collecting data to inform instruction. It may come as no surprise to you, but I am not all that excited about this project.
My disinterest doesn't stem from a belief that data cannot help inform instruction; instead, it comes from my belief the good teachers are already doing this anyway. Additionally, my disinterest comes from a lack of planning on the part of the instructors. In order to make decisions about what to focus on, I would expect to have in my hands the pre-existing data like the state exam scores. With those in hand, our data teams could peruse the data to determine what area needs immediate focus. But no, we didn't have that.
And this lack of information was only part of my problem. In addition to our regular staff meetings and department meetings, we are now required to meet with our data teams twelve times between nown and January. Those of you who have those important jobs in which you have hours of meetings will need to forgive me for complaining about an additional 18 hours of meetings, but I just have much better things to do than analyze data--namely, I need to prepare to teach in order for that data to change. And again, forgive me for complaining, but because the wonderful state of Connecticut is so prestigious, my certification from lowly Washington State, doesn't transfer smoothly. This means that I am being paid as a sub until certification happens. But, to be certified, I have to take two Praxis exams--which aren't offered again until November.
Dang it, that turned into a rant. I didn't want that.