Staff from MDE and SECC conducted two (June 1 and June 15) virtual GoToMeetings (GTM) to continue planning for the June 16 Assessment of Teacher’s Impact on Student Learning (ATISL) steering committee meeting and the July focus group meetings. During the June 1 GTM, the content of the steering committee meeting was finalized, with extended discussions of the steering committee’s involvement in the ATISL process, as well as steering committee meeting logistics, participant materials, and resulting timeline. The July 2017 regional focus groups also were discussed—location, staffing, dates, participant recruitment, and protocols. During the June 15 GTM, MDE and SECC reviewed the June 16 steering committee meeting agenda, logistics, and the facilitation of the table groups. The facilitation process was explained in detail, as both MDE staff and SECC staff were to serve as table facilitators to obtain and record participate feedback on the teacher and principal focus group protocols. On June 16, MDE and SECC co-facilitated the 30-member steering committee meeting, consisting of teachers, principals, district administrators, institutions of higher learning (IHL) representatives, and teacher advocacy organizations. Topics covered during the meeting included steering committee goals, scope, roles and responsibilities; teacher leaders’ roles and responsibilities; and teacher and principal focus group protocols. MDE and SECC staff recorded and compiled steering committee feedback on the teacher and principal focus group protocol documents.
Following the meeting, SECC compiled the feedback from the various table groups and presented the information to MDE for a final consensus for use in the July regional focus group meetings. The revised protocol documents will be used to gather information from teachers and principals to inform the development of the assessment of teacher’s impact on student learning (ATISL) for teachers of non-tested grades and subject areas, a new component of the Mississippi Educator Professional Growth System. SECC staff also conducted teacher leader virtual trainings on June 26 for those teachers interested in assisting MDE in the further development and roll-out of the ATSL process. The MDE intends to engage teacher leaders over time to help inform, refine, and co-lead sessions on this new ATISL component, thereby ensuring that teachers’ voices are infused throughout the design and implementation process.
Additionally, SECC staff reviewed Mississippi’s combined Talent for Turnaround Leadership Academy (T4TLA) action plan and excerpted content to compose two separate action plans for the Holmes County School District and the Yazoo City Municipal School District. Furthermore, in an effort to inform the T4TLA network’s next steps and to summarize Mississippi’s progress SECC compiled information to provide a high level “snapshot” of progress to date, namely challenge, root cause, strategy selected, implementation status, team’s next steps, and supports/resources needed to move implementation forward. The district action plans will help guide the school districts in moving the T4T work forward in their respective districts, namely in developing strategic communications plans to support turnaround and talent management, enhancing current data systems, and reviewing and implementing districtwide equity policies.