ItemPositive Behavior Support in Delaware schools: Developing perspectives on implementation and outcomes(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2010-07) Ackerman, Cheryl; Cooksy, Leslie; Murphy, Aideen; Rubright, Jonathan; Bear, George; Fifield, SteveIn Spring 2010, the Delaware Education Research and Development Center conducted an evaluation of Delaware’s PBS project, an initiative focused on developing a school-wide system of strategies to reduce behavior problems and foster a positive school climate. The study focused on facilitators and barriers to PBS implementation, and also included analyses to examine the relationship between PBS and school suspensions. This report first provides background on the principles of the original Positive Behavior Support program and the history of its implementation in Delaware, and then presents the evaluation questions, briefly outlines the methods used, and describes the results. The report closes with a postscript reflection on the findings from a PBS expert and member of the DE-PBS leadership team. ItemDelaware Middle Schools Beating the Odds(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2010-07) Grusenmeyer, Linda; Fifield, Steve; Murphy, Aideen; Nian, Qinghua; Qian, XiaoyuThe investigation identified Delaware public and charter middle schools across the state which outperformed other Delaware middle schools with similar student demographic profiles. Teachers and administrators at six of these "Beating the Odds" schools and at six comparison middle schools were surveyed regarding their schools characteristics and practices. In a second phase of the study, principals, teachers and students from the six "Beating the Odds" schools were interviewed to determine what they believe accounts for their school’s success. The study found that significantly more educators from “Beating the Odds” schools agreed that 18 specific practices and beliefs were typical of their schools when compared to educators from comparison schools. Fourteen of these related to three domains: high expectations, data use, and collaboration. Also, the two samples of schools differed in the intensity of their responses. That is, “Beating the Odds” school respondents “strongly agreed” significantly more often than comparison school respondents to over 80% of the survey items. Twenty-six of these items fell under the domains of teacher role, leadership, district influence, and instructional support. Finally, while participants in on-site interviews described essential local differences, most of the middle schools that are "Beating the Odds" shared an organizational climate shaped by leadership that identified compelling educational approaches and brought educators, students and parents together around those approaches. ItemEvaluation Results of the Delaware State Improvement Grant Year 4: Analysis of 2006 Assessment Results(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2006-10-13T18:43:52Z) Sherretz, Kelly; Shepperson, Barbara A.; Qian, XiaoyuIn 2002, the U.S. Department of Education awarded a five-year State Improvement Grant (SIG)to the Delaware Department of Education. This report details the reading assessment results from the Delaware Student Testing Program (DSTP) for the 2006 spring administration and when appropriate, compares the performance of students from the spring 2003, 2004, and 2005 administrations. Through this initiative, students with disabilities will receive instruction aimed to improve literacy and reading skills in an inclusive educational environment through the use of trained teachers and the implementation of scientifically-based research regarding the teaching of early literacy and reading skills. ItemAN ANALYSIS OF STUDENT READING AS MEASURED ON THE DIAGNOSTIC ASSESSMENT OF READING (DAR)(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2006-06-13T18:37:12Z) Baca, Jo-Ann M.; Shepperson, Barbara A.As part of the reporting of Delaware’s State Improvement Grant (DelaSIG), the Delaware Education Research and Development Center (R & D Center) completed a study on the Diagnostic Assessment of Reading (DAR) scores of students whose teachers attended a professional development program designed to help focus teacher instruction of struggling readers in Grades 4 through 12. IMPACT, the acronym for Implementing Multiple Practices for Activating Comprehension in Teaching, is a 30 hour training component of the professional development program provided by the Delaware Department of Education (DDOE).This paper reports the findings of the fall and spring assessments of the DAR and discusses their results and implications. Program developers may find the perceptions of the IMPACT survey respondents informative; their perceptions regarding the influence of the IMPACT training on their classroom instruction and on their students’ reading provide insight into the context of the findings ItemDistributed Leadership in Delaware(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-08-13T14:30:19Z) Buttram, Joan; PizziniThe Delaware Education Research and Development Center (DERDC) conducted a two-part study to determine the impacts of this program on participating schools in the state. In the first part, DERDC interviewed a sample of administrators and teachers from 6 of the 15 participating schools. Their responses helped design a survey that was administered in the second part of the study administered to 13 of the 15 schools involved in the DL effort and 3 comparison schools not involved in the effort. The work undertaken by DL teams, and other members of the schools, more often involved collaboration between teachers and, sometimes, between teachers and administrators. Interview responses suggested that teachers and principals were generally positive about the initiative, feeling that DL provided an opportunity to “open up so many doors,” reduce “the isolation” that many felt, and “let…everyone have a voice in the school.” ItemRelationship between Performance on DIBELS Oral Reading Fluency and Performance on the Reading DSTP(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2006-08-13T14:04:21Z) Uribe-Zarain, XimenaThis study was conducted to determine if the measure of reading fluency in the DIBELS is a reliable predictor of reading performance on the Delaware Student Testing Program (DSTP) in third grade. Given the three DIBELS ORF outcome levels and considering whether the student met or not the DSTP standard, students were classified into different groups. In particular, this study examines the characteristics of the students who are in these groups. ItemSchool-Based Teacher leaders: Longitudinal Report(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-10-08T19:52:02Z) Uribe-Zarain, XimenaThis evaluation report, prepared by the Delaware Education Research and Development Center (R&D Center), includes a description of the performance of a group of mathematics teachers who participated in the School Based Teacher Leaders (SBTL) project from 2005 until 2009 in the state of Delaware. During five years trained observers from our center conducted classroom observations as part of the annual evaluation of the project. ItemDE Reading First students' motivation and opportunity to read: Student survey results(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2007-04-08T19:29:42Z) Grusenmeyer, Linda; Uribe-Zarain, XimenaThis study surveyed and compared reading motivation and reading behaviors of first, second, and third graders in Delaware Reading First (DERF) schools with that of similarly aged students in comparison schools and a national sample. Data for this study was gathered in the fourth year of DERF’s five year implementation and was used to answer broader questions of the program’s impact on students: Do Reading First students read more frequently? Are they more positively disposed toward reading? ItemConverging Curriculum Interview Report 2007(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2007-10-08T19:22:15Z) Sweetman, HeidiThe main goal of the Converging Mathematics Project intervention program is to increase mathematics competency of at-risk and special education students and their teachers. For its first year of implementation, the project targeted a small cohort of teachers in grades five through nine. For its second year, the project expanded to include a larger audience of teachers. The project provides recommendations for materials and methods for extended math time interventions for at-risk students that are carefully aligned to the existing mathematics program. ItemConverging Curriculum Project: Year 3(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-08-08T19:22:06Z) Sweetman, HeidiObservations of teachers participating in the Converging Mathematics Project were conducted in order to determine the impact that the project is having on teaching techniques. Staff of the Delaware Education Research and Development Center conducted 18 observations of math lessons during fall 2008 and 15 observations during spring 2009. The observations conducted included three main components: The design and implementation of the lesson, mathematics content, and elements of classroom culture. ItemConverging Curriculum: Interviews 2009(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-09-08T19:21:58Z) Sweetman, HeidiThis study examined the experiences of teachers with the Converging Curriculum Project. The goals of the study were to 1) understand why teacher become a part of the program, 2) identify the biggest obstacles teachers encounter when implementing the curriculum, 3) identify the biggest help teachers encounter when implementing the curriculum, 4) better understand how and to what degree other instructional aides in the classroom facilitate teachers’ implementation of the curriculum, and 5) identify why teachers chose to remain with the project for multiple years. Results indicate that teachers become a part of the program in part because of their desire to better meet the needs of their students and their desire to become better teachers. ItemInvestigating teachers’ instructional leadership in the School Based Teachers Leaders program(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2008-12-08T19:21:48Z) Uribe-Zarain, XimenaThis study describes the use of social network analysis to evaluate the leadership configuration of mathematics teachers. The goal of this method is to use teacher collaboration data to map and explain the course of leadership and the adequate environment for a mathematics teacher to succeed as an instructional leader. This shift in evaluation model modifies the traditional view from explanations of events based on individual teachers to a view where a more contextual and systemic understanding of events takes place. In this way, the use of social network analysis in evaluation changes the focus from characteristics of individuals to interrelationships of systems’ individuals. ItemPowerful Pedagogical Practices Evaluation report Year 1(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-07-08T19:21:38Z) Uribe-Zarain, XimenaThis evaluation report, prepared by the Delaware Education Research and Development Center, includes a description of the performance of a group of Delaware mathematics teachers who participated in the Powerful Pedagogical Practices (P-cubed) project in the school year 2008-2009. This is the first year of the evaluation. ItemEarly Mathematics Teaching Leadership Project. Classrooms Evaluation: Year 1(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-08-08T19:21:27Z) Uribe- Zarain, XimenaThis evaluation report, prepared by the Delaware Education Research and Development Center, includes a description of the performance of a group of Delaware mathematics teachers who participated in the Early Mathematics Teaching Leadership project in the school year 2008-2009. This is the first year of the evaluation. The goals of the project are: (1) to build teacher knowledge of elementary mathematics concepts, (2) to develop district leadership structures that promote collegial planning, (3) to build leadership skills of elementary math specialists, (4) to promote the use of formative assessment, (5) to gather and analyze students and teacher data, and (6) to improve cohesiveness and effectiveness of elementary mathematics instruction. ItemMath Partnership Project Evaluation: Year 5(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-09-08T19:21:26Z) Uribe-Zarain, XimenaObservations of teachers participating in the Math Partnership Project were conducted to determine how teaching techniques changed over the school year. Staff from the Delaware Education Research and Development Center conducted 35 observations of math lessons during fall 2008 and 35 observations during spring 2009. Thirty of the teachers observed in spring were also observed in fall. The observations conducted included three main components: The design and implementation of the lesson, mathematics content, and elements of classroom culture. The data gathered indicate a positive change towards better teaching techniques; in all three components. ItemSchool‐Based Teacher Leaders: Longitudinal Analysis(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009) Uribe-Zarain, XimenaThis evaluation report, prepared by the Delaware Education Research and Development Center (R&D Center), includes a description of the performance of a group of mathematics teachers who participated in the School Based Teacher Leaders (SBTL) project from 2005 until 2009 in the state of Delaware. During five years trained observers from our center conducted classroom observations as part of the annual evaluation of the project. ItemSurvey of New Castle County Library Staff(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2009-09) Cooksy, Leslie J.; Ruddy, KyriannaThis report presents the results of a survey of library staff conducted by the University of Delaware Education Research and Development Center for the New Castle County (NCC) Division of Community Services. The purpose of the survey was to help Division administrators prepare for the annual Library Staff Day scheduled for September 17, 2009 by providing information on staff reaction to policies and changes made in the past year, staff input on future priorities, and staff recommendations for improving library services and libraries as a place to work. ItemPolicies and Practices of Successful Delaware High Schools(2009-07-27T14:03:21Z) Buttram, Joan; Cooksy, Leslie; Rubright, JonathanThis study examined the policies and practices used by three Delaware high schools to promote student achievement and graduation. The research found that high schools employed different combinations of policies and practices, including transition programs to orient incoming ninth grade students, academies to organize ninth grade students into smaller groups, extra instructional time to support students not making satisfactory academic progress, afterschool instructional help for all students needing extra help, mentoring, and twilight programs for students missing a small number of credits to graduate. These approaches were based on research findings, sound management, and creative programming. Many had been in place for multiple years, others had only been recently adopted. Although few conclusions about the effectiveness of the specific policies and practices described above can be drawn from a study of only three schools, the case studies do point to key considerations in deciding what interventions are appropriate in any school. These include student population, universal versus targeted services, resource availability, and size of school. ItemAwareness To Action: Recognizing and Addressing the Achievement Gaps in Delaware Schools(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2002) Banicky, LisaThis report represents an attempt to create a common understanding of the challenge facing many of the schools in Delaware with respect to the achievement gap separating minority and low income student performance from that of other students. It contains a school-by-school description of achievement gaps in the areas of reading and mathematics as measured by the Delaware Student Testing Program (DSTP). The hope is that the information provided in this report will promote an active dialogue that translates into the dissemination of concrete strategies for closing existing gaps and increasing the academic performance of all students in Delaware schools. ItemTransforming Early Childhood Education in Delaware: Building Foundations of Change(Delaware Education Research & Development Center, 2008-10) Noble, Audrey J.Early education is one of the best investments we can make—the returns for society are measurable. Each dollar spent on early education saves society about $4-$7 down the road in other costs, such as incarceration and Medicaid. Learning doesn't begin when children enter kindergarten at age 5 or 6. Research shows that the greatest brain growth and stimulation occur much, much earlier. Children who enter kindergarten unprepared are often two or three years behind their peers and many never catch up. Without skilled professionals, without stable programs, without proven practices, early childhood care and education will make limited contributions to the state’s vision of a world class education system. However, it appears that what the state expects ECE teachers to know and do is not reflected in how educators are compensated.