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Spencerport Central 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

The goal of the Spencerport Central School District’s Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (STLE) program has been to promote and enhance educator effectiveness through the framework of career ladder pathways that has been aligned with the Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (TLE) continuum. This has been accomplished by offering a myriad of opportunities such as peer evaluation and coaching, school-based instructional modeling and support, demonstration classrooms, data interpretation and support, college and career ready standards-aligned curriculum development and implementation support, professional development, and teacher leadership opportunities. These opportunities have provided teachers the support needed to implement the college and career ready standards and to improve upon their professional practice so that the learning needs of all students could best be met.

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The various positions from the career ladder built upon and expanded the levels of expertise, enabling teachers to strive for improvement in their pedagogy and encouraged teachers to build upon their professional knowledge of best practices and instructional strategies. Additionally, Spencerport’s more expert teachers had an opportunity to expand their knowledge and skills beyond their own classrooms, impacting teachers and students district-wide. These teachers have also had opportunity to serve the district as aspiring administrators, including them in various instructional committees and academic initiatives. 

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Promising Practice

  • Instructional Specialists provide support to classroom teachers, consultant teachers, AIS service providers and reading specialists in order to better meet the learning needs of all students, especially students with disabilities. This work has ensured that instructional programs are aligned to college and career readiness standards.
  • The district has held a series of "data days" in an effort to provide educators an opportunity to follow an evidence-based instruction model that supports and personalizes teaching and learning.
  • 21st Century Technology Teams at each level (K-5, 6-8, and 9-12) support educators through 1:1 professional development and provide engaging learning opportunities for students by incorporating technology into every classroom.

Sustainability

The Spencerport Central School District's Board of Education, Superintendent and Business Official are preparing the district financially to be able to sustain programs and personnel related to career ladder pathways.  Presently, two of the Instructional Specialist positions have been included in the proposed 2015-16 budget being presented to voters in May 2015.

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

  • 2 Instructional Specialists (K-5) directly impact 131 teachers which directly impact 1,559 students
  • 4 Instructional Specialists (6-12) directly impact 178 teachers which directly impact 2,146 students. 
  • 1 Director of Humanities directly impacts 6 principals, 6 assistant principals, and 330 teachers which directly impact 3,705 students

Areas of Focus

The Spencerport Central School District’s set out to address the common talent management challenges of developing 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

Spencerport has a supportive Board of Education that places a high priority on professional development.  When analyzing the ELA results for grades 3-5, the district identified the need to provide teacher support with the concept of close reading.  As a result, every 4th and 5th grade teacher participated in a locally-developed full-day workshop, led by the Instructional Specialists and Director of Humanities, that concentrated on close reading in November and December 2014 (3rd grade and special areas received this training in January 2015). Spencerport reports that this work immediately began paying dividends as teachers began adjusting their instruction accordingly and students are showing improvement in their textual interaction. 

The district has also established a 21st Century Technology Team that is managed by the two K-5 Instructional Specialists through the STLE 2 grant.  This team provides 1:1 professional development to every K-5 teacher and student based on the programs that we have adopted on multiple occasions throughout the school year.  The curriculum has been refined to encourage the use of technology in prescriptive and strategic manner. 

The grant has also allowed Spencerport to engage in book studies, establish effective literacy strategies at every grade level, and devote time to support students in the area of persuasive writing.  Teachers have received release time through the grant to meet and strategize the instructional support that they can provide to their students.  Additional accomplishments include curriculum development and refining the common formative assessments that are administered in all grade levels.  

Equitable Access

Prior to the STLE grant, Spencerport was looking at a re-distribution of its teachers and resources in order to best accommodate the learning needs of an elementary school within the district that had a disproportionate percentage of students with high needs. Spencerport built upon their pre-existing career ladder pathways for teachers, allowing their most expert teachers to have an opportunity to expand the reach of their knowledge and skills beyond their own classrooms.  K-5 Instructional Specialists now work with every elementary school, providing 1:1 support to teachers and students to further elevate instructional practice and student achievement. 

Other Areas of Focus

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

The original focus of the STLE grant was to work on the implementation of the college and career ready standards and to ensure that the district’s teachers understood how these changes impacted what they taught and their method of instruction. There has been a great deal of success with these shifts and the district has extended the work to the area of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Spencerport has also adopted a new math program at the K-5 level, Math Expressions, and this challenging approach has served the district’s students extremely well to meet the demands of the college and career readiness standards. The Instructional Specialists have posted curriculum in the district repository for every teacher to access across the district. This work contains curriculum maps, required activities, and assessments and ensures a predictable and consistent approach for all students. Spencerport’s curriculum and instructional delivery has improved dramatically through the grant and this has had a positive impact on students with disabilities (SWD) and English language learners (ELL). 

Evidence-Based Instruction

Instructional Team (K-5) and Teacher (6-12) Leaders along with administrators participated in the Instructional Leadership Academy in August, 2014.  This three day event set the stage for the school year and the district’s instructional leaders developed a great understanding of concepts such as explicit learning targets, providing effective feedback, ensuring appropriate level of challenge, importance of incorporating authentic assessment opportunities, the power of deliberate practice, and providing time for evidence-based reflection and collaboration.  The district also held a series of "data days" in an effort to provide educators an opportunity to follow an evidence-based instruction model that supports and personalizes teaching and learning. Spencerport has also partnered with an adjunct professor the Warner School of Education through University of Rochester, who has worked extensively with Instructional Team and Teacher Leaders and instructional administrators on the concept of explicit learning goals and assessment.  

Areas of Impact

The Spencerport Central 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 the percentage of students that demonstrated proficiency on New York State Grades 3-8 math Assessments by 15% for all students, 5% for students with disabilities (SWD), 14% for economically disadvantaged students and an average of 18% for minority students from 2012-13 to 2013-14.
  • Increased the Aspirational Performance Measures in ELA and Math for all students by 10% and for economically disadvantaged students by 15% from 2012-13 to 2013-14.
Early Impact on Talent Management System
  • The percentage of Spencerport teachers receiving an overall composite APPR score of Highly Effective increased from 16% in 2012-13 to 23% in 2013-14.
  • The percentage of Spencerport teachers receiving a State Growth or Other Comparable Measures rating of Highly Effective increased from 29% in 2012-13 to 62% in 2013-14. 

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.

Teacher Career Ladder Pathway

Teacher Title Roles and Reponsibilities Compensation Number Serving in Role in 2014-15
Novice Teacher
  • Role and responsibility consistent with a classroom teacher.
District Teacher Salary Schedule as specified in contract

60

Professional Teacher

Instructional Specialist, K-5 & 6-12

  • Instructional Specialist will provide direct support to the District’s K-12 teachers in multiple ways including but not limited to:
    • Modeling for and co-teaching with teachers
    • Coaching teachers and offering non-evaluative suggestions
    • Aligning existing curriculum and assessments to the Common Core Learning Standards for ELA and Math
    • Providing direct support to teachers on student acquisition of 21st Century learning skills
    • Providing direct support at faculty and team meetings in collaboration with building principals
    • Providing small and large group professional development
    • Active participation on the Curriculum/Staff Development Council
    • Participation in the August 2014 Instructional Leadership Academy

Curriculum Writer           

  • Works collaboratively and cooperatively with colleagues to contribute to the development and refinement of curriculum and assessments

Cooperating Teacher

  • Works with and provides site supervision to student teacher

21st Century Pilot Teacher

  • Assist individual teachers to develop and implement integrated technology and 21st century skills into lessons through coaching, co-planning, answering questions and providing a model classroom
  • Support district-wide 21st century learning/technology program
  • Attend monthly pull-out days

Differentiated Instruction (DI) Mentor

  • Assist individual teachers to implement differentiated and integrated technology lessons through coaching, co-planning, answering questions and providing a model classroom
  • Mentors support district-wide differentiation program which is a critical component of Schoolwide Enrichment
  • Mentors attend monthly group meetings

District Trainers

  • District trainers are responsible to plan agendas, prepare workshop materials, prepare training manuals, set/maintain workshop learning environment, monitor participant’s learning and made adjustments as needed, keep confidential any training information, oversee attendance and workshop protocol, and establish follow-up as needed

Mentor for New Teacher

  • Mentor role is non-evaluative and is to engage, assist, encourage, inspire, and advance the professional learning of a beginning teacher and to model professional conduct

Enrichment Specialist, K-5

  • Assists the principal and Director of Learning and Professional Development in the development, coordination, and implementation of the Schoolwide Enrichment Plan
  • Provides expertise, coaching, training for faculty at the elementary school level
K-5 Instructional Specialist: FTE; 6-12 Instructional Specialist: .2 -.5 FTE; All others release time or compensation as specified in contract

K-5 Instructional Specialist: 2; 6-12 Instructional Specialist: 4

Teacher Leader

Grade Level Team Leader, Support Staff Team Leader, Teacher Leader-Secondary Level:

  • Responsible to the building principal and contributes to the development of school policies via the principal
  • Works collaboratively with teachers within their grade level and provides assistance
  • Contributes to the development and refinement of curriculum and assessments trhough area content supervisor
  • Serves as scoring facilitator for all mandated assessments
  • Serves as an APPR liaison
  • Attends Curriculum/Staff Development Council

Teacher on Special Assignment (TOSA):

  • Verifies data for certification by Superintendent
  • Fulfills data request from various district administrators
  • Acts as district grant writer
Grade Level Team Leader, Support Staff Team Leader, Teacher Leader-Secondary Level: release time or compensation as specified in contract (not paid through STLE); Teacher on Special Assignment (TOSA): compensation for position according to contract

5

Principal Career Ladder Pathway

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

Non-tenured Building Principal 

  • Serves as the instructional leader for the building and exercises administrative responsibilities for the overall operation of that school
  • Works with teachers leaders to utilize data as means to maximize academic performance through data-driven instruction.
  • Involves faculty, staff, and students in decision-making process while maintaining responsibility for final decisions, collecting information from stakeholder groups such as the Building Planning Team (BPT); teacher (and team leaders at the elementary level) Leaders; and PBIS teams
  • Participates on various district level leadership teams, committees and councils
  • Reports to the Assistant Superintendent of Instruction.
Salary per Administrator Contract 0
Professional Principal

Tenured Building Principal

  • All responsibilities of a Novice Principal, plus the following additional areas of responsibilities (may include, but not limited to):
    • Supervision and Staff Evaluation
    • Instructional Support/RtI
    • School Climate/PBIS
    • Communication
    • Curriculum and Instruction
    • Resource Management
    • Professional Development at the building level
    • Student Extracurricular Activities
    • Any additional responsibilities as assigned by Assistant Superintendent of Instruction
Salary per Administrator Contract 6
Principal Leader
  • Principal Leaders have opportunities to become specialized directors of various instruction areas including:
    • Director of Technology Operations
    • Director of Special Education
    • Director of Health, Physical Education and Athletics
    • Director of Learning and Professional Development
    • Director of Humanities
Salary per Administrator Contract 1 (Director of Humanities paid through STLE)

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

  • Spencerport’s 21st Century Technology Team, managed by the two K-5 Instructional Specialists through the STLE 2 grant, provides 1:1 professional development to every K-5 teacher and student.  The 21st Century Technology Team details their plan for the district on this website, as well as through this presentation to the Spencerport Board of Education.
  • Spencerport’s Team (K-5) and Teacher (6-12) Leaders along with administrators participated in the Instructional Leadership Academy in August 2014.  This three day event set the stage for the school year and the district’s instructional leaders developed a great understanding of concepts such as explicit learning targets, providing effective feedback, ensuring appropriate level of challenge, importance of incorporating authentic assessment opportunities, the power of deliberate practice, and providing time for evidence-based reflection and collaboration. 
  • 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

  • In this video, Spencerport administrators, principals, and teachers share the impact that the grant has had within the district, reflect on the lessons that have been learned and outline what the work will look like after the STLE 2 grant is over. 
  • In this presentation, career ladder pathway Instructional Specialists (Professional Teachers) and the Director of Humanities (Principal Leader) share recommendations with the Spencerport Board of Education for further aligning their ELA program to college and career readiness standards.

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