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Resources

Understanding Scale Score

A scale is an arbitrarily established set of numbers used for measurement according to a rate or standard.  Learning to understand scale scores is an essential skill for every educator and this one-page summary created by the New York City Charter School Center can help.

SMART Goals Connect a School

School staff are periodically reminded to revisit their SMART goals—goals that are Strategic and Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Results-based, and Timebound, in order to better assess the student population across learning disciplines.  This article by Jan O'Neill offers useful advice for doing so.

Developing an Inquiry Minded-District

Analyzing data not only helps inform decisions and challenge assumptions, but also helps teachers view their instructional and collaborative practices with a new perspective.  In this abstract from Education Leadership, three schools show how the data-based inquiry and decision-making process can improve decisions about curriculum, instruction, and policy.

The Effects of New York City's Charter Schools on Student Achievement by Caroline Hoxby, Sonali Murarka, and Jenny Kang (2009)

The latest report from the New York City Charter Schools Evaluation Project compares the academic performance of charter school students with that of their peers who attempted to enroll in charter schools but were not selected in a random lottery. This method allows the researchers to isolate the effect of attending a charter school, without being concerned that factors related to the decision to apply to a charter school are really driving achievement differences.

SMART Goals, Smart Schools

Setting goals that connect to the classroom and focus on student learning helps educators see, learn from, and communicate their results.  In this abstract from Education Leadership, author Jan O'Neill discusses SMART Goals; setting specific goals that are strategic, measurable, attainable, results-oriented, and timebound.

Work Smarter, Not Harder: SMART Goals Keep Key Objectives in Focus

Businesses have long used SMART goals—goals that are Strategic and Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Results-based, and Timebound as a way to cut through the morass of conflicting priorities and focus their energies on goals that would make a difference to their work. Although SMART goals did not seep into the education lexicon until the 1990s, the power that they bring to school improvement work is the same. SMART goals can focus a school’s or district’s work and determine whether the work is making a difference.  This report suggests ways to make SMART goals work for educators.

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