Protocol for LPD/LPS Literacy Assessment Team Visits

Protocol for LPD/LPS Literacy Assessment Team Visits
Basic Info
School ____________
Number of students________
Number of ELLs__________
Grade Span__________
Home Languages ________
Spec Ed________
ELL Service Model
Bilingual support_________
ESL only_________
English Language Support with non-ESL, non-bilingual support teachers (i.e. Title 1, etc.)
Verify above with ESPA/NJASK data for most recent year. Note discrepancies.
1. Evaluations, Data and Assessments
1.1 Be prepared with state level ESPA/NJASK data. Focus on subcluster weaknesses.
Does subcluster (language, reading, writing, etc.) analysis tell you there is a singular area
of focus needed? Concentrate here in your classroom visits. (e.g. low writing task..ask to
see writing samples. Is writing all modeled?)
1.2 Is there off-year testing with a reliable norm-referenced or criterion-referenced
instrument? In which grades do the problems begin?
1.3 Does the district/school collect and do longitudinal comparative assessment from the
data? What do the data tell you about this school? How do pre-exit (3rd year and beyond
ELL students) compare to ELB students? Are exited ELLs scoring partially proficient in
large numbers? Are the vast majority of Spec Ed students partially proficient? Has this
school not focused on these populations building an NCLB shock to come?
1.4 Do clear entry/exit criteria exist for ELL students? Based on which instrument?
District level/school level input?
1.5 Have you queried the data for ethnic/linguistic comparative information? Are certain
ethnic groups doing better/ worse than the mean? Why?
1.6 Is there a gender gap? Particular to any ethnic/linguistic group?
1.7 Are students screened for potential reading difficulties (also in the native language)?
How? Formal, ie DIBELS or informal?
1.8 What is the ongoing assessment process? Portfolios? Is it geared to the curriculum?
1.9 Are there other diagnostic tests in use? What are they? Do they exist in native
2. Comprehensive Reading Programs
2.1 What is the Comprehensive Reading Program currently in use for general education
2.2 Is there a separate one for ELLs (ESL Reading) ?
If not, what adaptations are made for ELLs?
2.3 If there is a bilingual program , is there a (Spanish) native language comprehensive
reading program? Is it aligned to the general education program?
2.4 What’s going in spec ed? Same program? Differentiated?
3. Curriculum and Instruction
3.1 Is there a clear district-level curriculum for all populations? Is it for general ed
students only? Is it integrated and unified by themes so all populations are included?
What do they have for ESL, ESL Reading, native language reading in place? Can
teachers readily produce a copy?
3.2 Does the curriculum (and lesson planning) align itself to NJCCCS, norm referenced
test outcomes/standards? Does it clearly state what should be learned each marking
period of each grade?
3.3 Are the books, materials and supplemental resources aligned to the desired outcomes?
3.4 Does the curriculum have high expectations for all students? Does it expect exiting
ELL students to be on grade level?
3.5 Are there classroom libraries with sufficient numbers of books to provide for
connections to home, cultural connections, motivation, building background knowledge
of Anglo-American culture? Do primary classes have Big Books?
3.6 Is instruction explicit and systematic in phonological awareness especially in the area
of phonemes and graphemes for all populations and specifically for those that do not
readily transfer from the native languages of the ELL populations?
3.7 Are there sufficient quantities of decodable books for students to particpate in guided
reading small group instruction and build fluency? Paired-reading, DEAR, etc.
3.8 Is there clear guidance in the curriculum and/or are lessons geared to higher order
thinking so as to engage all students in analysis, application, synthesis, and evaluation
regardless of their status as pre-emergent, emergent, developing, or fluent readers?
4. Structures
4.1 What is the length of the current literacy block of time?
4.2 Is there district-level or school level guidance in the use of time during the block?
(i .e., begin with read aloud 10 mins. and whole group instruction 10 mins. )
4.3 What strategies and techniques are in use/recommended? (These should be in the
curriculum section, too)
Small group instruction based on centers _______
Read Aloud _____________
TPR __________________
Shared Reading _____________
Sheltered English ______
Guided Reading _____________
LEA ____________________
DEAR/SSR ______________
Natural Approach ___________
Others(list or explain) ________________
Can teachers say what these mean beyond naming them.?
4.4 How are services provided to ELLs (in the block, separate)?
4.5 Do ESL/Title 1/Resource teachers co-teach or pull-out? Why?
4.6 Are there learning centers in the classrooms? How are they used?
5. Students, Teacher, and the classroom
5.1 The environment tells you a lot. Look around you. Do you see word walls? Published
student work (not worksheets)? Clearly labeled centers? Big Books on display (k-2)
Desks in rows? Note what you see.
5.2 Engage the teacher immediately by asking her to pick some students to read. (You
want to see the best) Always have them reading something they have already read and
not something new. After a few “chosen “ students, ask for volunteers from others.
What to look and listen for:
Can the students in this class read at grade level?
First graders should be able to decode by late Fall. Can they read decodable books
independent of picture clues? (Watch for memorization.) Ask them what key vocabulary
words mean? Main idea? What’s this story about?
Second graders should have no trouble decoding. Ask key vocabulary, literal
questions located in story, what happens next, predict outcome?
5.3 Is everything “whole group” or is there real “guided reading”? What are the other
students doing while the teacher is doing guided reading?
5.4 Ask for student portfolios. What’s here? Dittos, fill-ins or HOTS (higher order
thinking skills) stuff! Are students engaged in upper levels of Blooms taxonomy or
repeating low level modeled activities? Is there a writing portfolio with multiple drafts in
it? Is there clear evidence of process writing?
5.5 Check for low expectations! Ask about grouping. Students having difficulty? What’s
the expectation here? Are they “somebody else’s” concern/fault? Are societal woes
brought up?
Professional Development
6.1 What kinds of preservice backgrounds do the teachers have in the selected
comprehensive reading program? Has the CRP company done workshops? How many,
on what? Do they still come in?
6.2 Has the district provided inservice in the curriculum? Recommended strategies and
techniques? Assessment tools? Portfolio assessment, etc? Note here.
6.3 Is professional development inclusive of all teachers, ESL/bilingual teachers, spec
ed? Or do they segregate out most of the time?
6.3 Are general educational teachers regularly invited to participate in ESL/bilingual/spec
ed professional development?
6.4 What was the last professional development activity? What was the last professional
development activity geared toward ELL/spec ed students in which teachers at this school
participated? How many, how much time, what was the follow up?
6.5 Is professional development systematic and targeted to the school, personal to the
teachers or is it awareness level designed at the district level?
6.6 How is professional development supported at this school? (additional pay, excused
hours during regular work time, voluntary)?
Fred Carrigg
Special Assistant to the Commissioner
for Urban Literacy
Division of Abbott Implementation
New Jersey Department of Education
PO Box 500
Trenton,New Jersey 08625
Tel: (609) 633-1726
Fax: (609) 777-0967