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Freeport Union Free School District

 STLE | Program Summary Local Education Agencies (LEAs) and local unions collaborated to develop programs that focus on various elements of a strategically planned Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (TLE) Continuum, including preparation, recruitment and placement, induction and mentoring, evaluation, ongoing professional development/professional growth, performance management and career ladder pathways. | Focus & ImpactEach Local Education Agency (LEA) has identified measurable goals and outcomes aligned with their grant programs. Quantitative and qualitative data is meant to communicate the value and impact of this work by highlighting the reach of teacher and principal leaders, cost and time savings, as well as indicate the progress made towards the specific student achievement and talent management needs identified by each LEA. Program evaluation is ongoing; LEAs will continue to monitor impact through and beyond the grant period to better understand correlations between various district and building initiatives, the work of teacher and principal leaders, and the impact on student access and achievement.> | Career Ladder PathwaysEach LEA participating in STLE 2 or 3 was required to develop and implement or enhance career ladder pathways rooted in sound implementation of their evaluation systems. Career ladder pathways were based on a minimum of three “rungs” including: novice, professional, and leader levels that were associated with specific roles, responsibilities, and optional district-defined compensation incentives. | Sharing the WorkThe Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (STLE) grant has resulted in the development and sharing of a wide variety of tools, tips, and resources. Local Education Agencies (LEAs) have been highlighted for their work through various media outlets and NYSED videos, and have also created tools and resources that are available to the field.

STLE Program Summary   Local Education Agencies(LEAs) and local unions collaborated to develop programs that focus on various elements of a strategically planned Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (TLE) Continuum, including preparation, recruitment and placement, induction and mentoring, evaluation, ongoing professional development/professional growth, performance management and career ladder pathways.

Continuum Graphic

This graphic represents the Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (TLE) continuum recommended by the New York State Education Department.

Program Summary

Freeport applied for the STLE 1 grant to improve their capacity to raise the performance of all students in the district in light of the increased rigor presented by the new college and career ready standards.  A renewed focus on career ladder pathways provided through the STLE grant directly aligned with Freeport’s strategic plan, which centers on acquiring, retaining, and developing principal and teacher leaders to improve student performance.  The district hoped that the STLE grants would improve their ability to accelerate the growth of all student groups, including English language learners and students with disabilities, as well as bolster educators’ ability to engage students more effectively in relevant work by providing staff development in technology and Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields. 

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Freeport also realized that their master teachers required additional opportunities to lead and share their work in order for the district to improve learning.  The district’s first leadership models and career ladder pathways provided opportunities for principals and teachers to become “turnkey” staff developers and helped a cohort of teachers become experts in integrating STEM into their instruction.  STLE 1 provided high quality experiences for staff and students in the district and it became evident that continuing grant activities in order to improve student performance was an imperative. 

Freeport applied for the STLE 3 grant to further enhance its career ladder pathways model to address additional instructional gaps in the district, including instructional alignment to the college and career ready English Language Arts Standards.  As the district implements the second iteration of its career ladder pathway model,  they have shifted from identifying key educators as “turnkey” trainers towards identifying and implementing expanded leadership roles in the district.  Through STLE 3, Freeport has added additional roles and responsibilities for teacher and principal leaders, including STEM Teacher Leader and Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Council Member positions.  In addition, the district is refining their recruitment and selection strategies for teacher and principal leaders.  As teacher and principal leaders have increased their expertise they have become invaluable to Freeport’s instructional program.  The district is committed to sustaining career ladder pathways and will continue to leverage teacher and principal leaders expertise for the benefit of all students and staff. 

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Promising Practice

  • Developed a comprehensive plan utilizing principal and teacher leaders that identifies the needs of the district and provide support for educators to be trained to meet that need.
  • Communicated extensively and in multiple formats to make certain that all stakeholders are aware and in support of district initiatives.
  • Partnered with local higher education institutions dedicated to building the capacity of teacher and principal leaders and to identify innovative practices that improve leaning and engage students.
  • Encouraged collaboration among teachers through the use of K-12 curriculum councils, collegial circles and mentoring.
  • Established a process to identify and encourage master teachers to take on leadership roles early in their careers.
  • Analyzed, identified and gave merit to the multitude of ways that teachers take on leadership roles in the district.
  • Invested in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM) professional development as a way to engage staff and students, improve instruction, and integrate the college and career ready Literacy standards into content areas.

Sustainability

The Freeport Union Free School District is committed to sustaining all grant funded activities, including career ladder pathways, beyond the grant term.  Freeport currently spends and plans to continue to expend over $100,000 each year of the general fund in support of career ladder pathway opportunities for teachers.   This funding will continue and along with grants, new and existing, career ladder pathways opportunities will be sustained, such as Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Council Member and Professional Development Planning Team Member roles.  

STLE Areas of Focus and Impact   Each Local Educational Agency (LEA) has identified measurable goals and outcomes aligned with their grant programs. Quantitative and qualitative data is meant to communicate the value and impact of this work by highlighting the reach of teacher and principal leaders, cost and time savings, as well as indicate the progress made towards the specific student achievement and talent management needs identified by each LEA. Program evaluation is ongoing; LEAs will continue to monitor impact through and beyond the grant period to better understand correlations between various district and building initiatives, the work of teacher and principal leaders, and the impact on student access and achievement.

This graphic represents the five common talent management challenges. LEAs may address one or more of the five common talent management challenges of preparing, recruiting, developing, retaining and providing equitable access to the most effective educators using career ladder pathways.

Reach

  • 30 STEM Teacher Leaders directly impact 100 teachers which impact 2,700 students
  • 40 Mentors directly impact 40 teachers which impact 1,050 students
  • 1 Principal Leader directly impacts 586 teachers which impact 7,060 students

Areas of Focus

The Freeport Union Free School District set out to address the common talent management challenges of developing, retaining, and providing equitable access to the most effective educators through their career ladder pathway model. 

Common Talent Management Challenges

Common Talent Management Challenge Local Educational Agency (LEA) Efforts
Development

Freeport has created partnerships with local institutions of higher learning and educational support organizations to provide professional development opportunities for its teacher and principal leaders.  Partners include: Adelphi University, Cradle of Aviation, Harvard University, Freeport Teacher Center, and Nassau BOCES. Adelphi and Nassau BOCES provided weekly professional development on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), literacy, and technology integration.  Freeport partnered with Adelphi and Harvard University to provide training for teacher and principals in coaching, mentoring, and conducting professional development opportunities for their peers. Ten teachers enrolled in Adelphi courses to obtain dual certification in special education. An Adelphi University designee implemented push-in coaching and modeling of best practices to K-8 grade classes and a Data Literacy course was provided to career ladder pathways principals.  In addition, career ladder pathways principals attended the Harvard Leadership Institute. Professional development in Universal Design for Learning for K-12 special education teachers was conducted by trained Special Education facilitators. 

Retention

As the district implemented the second iteration of its career ladder pathway model through STLE 3, they shifted from identifying key educators as “turnkey” trainers towards identifying and implementing expanded leadership roles in the district.  Freeport has added additional roles and responsibilities for teacher and principal leaders, including STEM Teacher Leader and Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Council Member positions. As teacher and principal leaders have increased their expertise they have become invaluable to Freeport’s instructional program. The district also hopes to expand its internal capacity to create a larger pool of outstanding educators for key instructional positions, including teachers, principals and Curriculum Directors.  Freeport career pathway participants have been monetarily recognized and supported through professional development for their roles (e.g. Teacher Mentor $1,200 stipend and Professional Principal receives data literacy courses through Adelphi University).

Equitable Access

Freeport developed a comprehensive plan utilizing principal and teacher leaders that identified the needs of the district and provided support for their educators to be trained to meet district needs. Forty Mentors provide targeted mentoring for teachers rated Ineffective and Developing and mentored new and probationary teachers.  Partnering with local higher education institutions assisted in the dedication to building the capacity of teacher and principal leaders and to identify innovative practices that improve learning and the engagement of students.

Other Areas of Focus

Other Areas of Focus Local Educational Agency (LEA) Efforts
College and Career Readiness Standards in ELA and Math

Seventeen Lead Teachers and seven Department Chairs supported new and developing teachers through modeling and coaching, developing curriculum aligned to the college and career ready standards, and assist in data analysis to improve student performance. Thirty Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Council Members and fifteen Professional Development Planning Team Members helped with setting district goals and implementation of curriculum objectives. Grades 7 and 8 science and English Language Arts (ELA) teachers received professional development from Adelphi professors on implementing lessons aligned with the Next Generation Science standards.

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)

Thirty STEM Teacher Trainees participated in training to build leadership capacity in STEM instruction and thirty STEM Teacher Leaders provided professional development on the integration of STEM instruction and curriculum. Adelphi University held a four day Summer Institute on using STEM to promote English Language Arts (ELA) for grade 2 teachers by creating a Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM) module. Cradle of Aviation provided coaching for grades 7-12 teachers on Physics and Aeronautics.

Innovative Practice

Twelve District Technology Committee Members evaluated and advised development and review of the technology plan and identified software and computer assisted instructional programs. The Teacher Center concluded a three session workshop on using document cameras. Nassau BOCES worked with Atkinson Intermediate School grades 5-6 students and teachers on integrating technology into science and social studies lessons. BOCES also provided technology integration training to teachers in grades 5-6 with specific attention to English language learners and special education students.

Areas of Impact

The Freeport Union Free School District has identified quantitative and qualitative impact data that it has seen and hopes to realize since implementing career ladder pathways and related STLE grant activities. 

Areas of Impact

Initial Student Impact
  • Increased State-Provided Growth Ratings of Effective and Highly Effective for teachers by 32% from 2012-13 to 2013-14. 
  • Increased the 4-Year Graduation Rate by 7% from 74% for the 2009 cohort to 81% for the 2010 cohort.
  • Increased the percentage of students demonstrating proficiency on the New York State Grades 3-8 Math assessments by 6 % from 2012-13 to 2013-14.
  • Increased the number of students reading on grade level. 
Early Impact on Talent Management System
  • 5 Lead Teachers are prepared to turnkey instructional strategies and 125 K-4 teachers now have the resources and training to accelerate reading levels for all students.
  • 6 teachers of students with disabilities have received dual English as a Second Language certification and 100% are currently in positions maximizing its use.
  • 100% of teacher observation results indicate improved instructional practice after targeted feedback from the peer observation model.
  • All teachers are better prepared to align instruction to the college and career ready standards and integrate STEM into instruction.
  • All Novice Principals have developed comprehensive strategic building plans as a result of mentoring by Lead Principal.

Career Ladder Pathways   Each LEA participating in STLE 2 or 3 was required to develop and implement or enhance career ladder pathways rooted in sound implementation of their evaluation systems.  Career ladder pathways were based on a minimum of three “rungs” including: novice, professional, and leader levels that were associated with specific roles, responsibilities, and optional district-defined compensation incentives.

Career ladder pathways are a systematic, coordinated approach to provide new and sustained leadership opportunities with additional compensation, recognition, and/or job embedded professional development for teachers and principals in order to advance excellent teaching and learning.

Teacher Career Ladder Pathway

Teacher Title Roles and Reponsibilities Compensation Number Serving in Role in 2014-15
Novice Teacher

STEM Teacher Trainee:

  • Participation in STEM training events designed to build leadership capacity in STEM instruction

Collegial Circle Membership:

  • Participation or leadership of  Collegial Circles

Parent Workshop Presenter:

  • Prepare and present Parent University Workshops
$21.66/hour

STEM Teacher Trainee: 30

Professional Teacher

Mentors:

  • Mentor new/ probationary teachers
  • Targeted mentoring for teachers rated as ineffective/developing
  • Peer to peer mentoring of effective practices

Team Leaders:

  • Provide guidance to relating to curriculum and assessment
  • Assist in the analysis of data to develop action plans to improve student performance
  • Liaison with school administrators to discuss curriculum, instruction, and assessment
  • Attendance at a Summer Data Summit
  • 20 hours of Professional Development Leadership

STEM Teacher Leader:

  • Provide professional development and guidance to all staff on the integration of STEM into Curriculum and Instruction

Curriculum Writer:

  • Develop Curriculum Modules

Dual Enrollment Coordinator:

  • Manage the PTECH and SMART Scholar program at FHS.
  • Liaison with PTECH consortium and local Universities
  • Meet with parents, staff and students regularly to provide support
  • Attendance at PTECH consortium trainings and planning meetings

21st Century Building Program Coordinator:

  • Meet with parents, staff and students regularly to provide support
  • Manage the implementation of 21st century extended day programming
  • Articulate student data between regular school day and extended day 21st Century programs
  • Liaison with program evaluator for required reports
  • Work with building principals on the evaluation and design of 21st century programming
Mentor: $1,200 stipend; Team Leaders: $3,338; STEM Teacher Leader: Hourly Contractual Rate; Curriculum Writer: Hourly Contractual Rate; Dual Enrollment Coordinator: $5,393; 21st Century Building Program Coordinator: Hourly Contractual Rate

Mentor: 40; Team Leader: 16; STEM Teacher Leader: 30; Curriculum Writer: 10; Dual Enrollment Coordinator: 1; 21st Century Building Program Coordinator: 6

Teacher Leader

Lead Teacher/ Department Chairs:

  • Representation on District curriculum and assessment committees
  • Curriculum development
  • Modeling and coaching of effective practice with new/developing colleagues
  • Assist in the analysis of data to develop action plans to improve student performance
  • Attendance at local, regional, and national conferences
  • Attendance at a Summer Data Summit
  • 20 hours of Professional Development Leadership

Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Council Membership/ Professional Development Planning Team Membership:

  • Provide guidance on setting District goals and in the implementation of Curriculum objectives
Lead Teacher: $3,338; Department Chair: $5,393; Curriculum Instruction and Assessment Council Membership/ Professional Development Planning Team Membership:No Stipend

Lead Teacher: 17; Department Chair: 7

Principal Career Ladder Pathway

Principal Title Roles and Reponsibilities Compensation Number Serving in Role in 2014-15
Novice Principal
  • May have some roles and responsibilities in addition to the regular duties of a principal
N/A
Professional Principal
  • Work with Adelphi professors to analyze student achievement; Participate on District Curriculum and Assessment committees to contribute expertise and recommendations
  • Work with teachers to analyze data at the classroom level to identify opportunities for strengthening curriculum and teaching practice
Data Literacy Courses through Adelphi University 6
Principal Leader
  • Convene meetings with other principals on a regular basis to disseminate information gained from professional development opportunities.
  • Contribute resources and video to resource libraries in the district.
  • Mentor new principals.
  • Attend national conferences on leadership.
  • Host principal interns.
Attendance at Harvard Leadership Institute 1

Sharing the Work   The Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (STLE) grant has resulted in the development and sharing of a wide variety of tools, tips, and resources. Local Education Agencies (LEAs) have been highlighted for their work through various media outlets and NYSED videos, and have also created tools and resources that are available to the field.

Resources

  • The New York State Career Ladder Pathways Toolkit, a new, interactive, web-based toolkit that includes profiles of adaptable career ladder pathways models, resources, and best practices to help address the five common talent management challenges that contribute significantly to equitable access , resources that will help LEAs implement the Department’s recommended framework and steps to design and implement robust career ladder pathways.
  • To learn more about the Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (STLE)  grant program and to access additional resources for career ladder pathways visit: EngageNY: Improving Practice Landing Page

The Office of Teacher/Principal Quality & Professional Development invites you to submit tools and resources to STLE@nysed.gov that will further help the field, including but not limited to: gap analysis templates, career ladder pathway design principles, communication plans, description of sample roles and responsibilities, tools that help gauge the return on investment and strategies for program evaluation. 

Local Media

We encourage you to continue to contribute to the on-going conversation on Twitter by sharing your work using #STLE.