Professional Growth

Talk Data to Me: Professional Development Activity Trends

By analyzing professional development program data, school districts can identify specific trends and patterns in teacher performance and growth. This enables district leaders to adapt their programs and strategies to meet emerging challenges and leverage opportunities for growth. Ultimately, continuous improvement based on data analysis ensures that your professional development program remains relevant and aligned […]

Professional Growth

Effective Strategies for Analyzing Professional Development Data: It’s Not As Hard As You Think!

I remember struggling through my college statistics class. Just the term “data analysis” made me cringe. After all, I was going to be a teacher, not a scientist! Now that I’ve spent years collecting and analyzing data I’ve learned, I don’t need to be a statistician to do professional development program evaluation. Whether you love […]

Professional Growth

Report: Data-Driven and Classroom-Focused Professional Development

A look at the data with Elizabeth Combs of the Frontline Research & Learning Institute When the Every Student Succeeds Act was signed in December 2015, educators working in professional learning (as well as in every other area of education) took note. In particular, the criteria defining effective professional development grabbed K-12 administrators’ attention. The […]

Professional Growth

Professional Development Program Evaluation: Using Surveys, Interviews, Focus Groups and Observations

In the previous article in this series on evaluating teacher professional development, I shared that evaluation questions drive data collection and asked, “How would we know what data to collect, and from whom, if we haven’t settled on the questions we’re asking?” Once we have settled on a small set (about 1-3) of evaluation questions, […]

Professional Growth

Measuring the Impact of Professional Learning

When districts invest in professional learning, they expect results for both educators and students. Yet far too often, the evidence of effect is elusive. This reality can be changed when district and school leaders plan for the evaluation of professional learning when they initially design it to strengthen educator effectiveness and student success. Six districts […]

Professional Growth

Focus Groups: Your Secret Weapon for Enhancing Professional Development Program Evaluation

Focus groups (FGs) — essentially interactive, conversational group interviews — are an underappreciated data collection strategy. When used well, they can provide rich, nuanced and actionable data for your professional development program evaluation. They are fairly easy to add to your repertoire and don’t require extensive planning or resources to carry out. They are often […]

Professional Growth

What’s Involved in Evaluating a Professional Development Program?

Today’s article, focused on the five phases of program evaluation, is Part 2 of a seven-part series on evaluating professional development. In the rest of the series, you’ll learn how you can apply these phases to evaluate your own programs.   What is Program Evaluation? In Part 1, we learned that program evaluation is applying […]

Professional Growth

3 Non-traditional Professional Learning Ideas for Teachers

Tips to Boost Teacher Agency 20 miles east of Portland, Oregon sits Gresham-Barlow School District. With 18 schools, “We’re too small to be big, and too big to be small,” says Sarah Hayden, an instructional coach at the district. Sarah and her colleagues work one-on-one with teachers, but also work at the district level in […]

Professional Growth

5 Reasons You Should Be Evaluating Your Professional Development Programs

Wouldn’t it be great if we knew when our professional learning programs were successful? What if we knew more than just the fact that teachers liked the presenter, were comfortable in the room or learned something new? Wouldn’t it be better to know that teachers made meaningful changes in teaching practice that resulted in increased […]

Talk Data to Me

A data-centric view on the challenges facing school districts

Recruiting & Hiring

Talk Data to Me: Hire Rates

According to a 2021 Frontline survey, about two-thirds of over 1,200 school and district administrators reported having a teacher shortage. Some districts experienced the teacher shortage worse than others. About half of the respondents reported difficulty filling jobs across all grade levels and subjects while the other half felt the effects of the shortage in […]

Teacher Absences & Subs

Talk Data to Me: Trends in Absence Management and Substitute Pools

Troubled by substitute shortages and low fill rates? You’re not alone. These are challenges faced by many districts, and for good reason. Substitute management is no walk in the park: a lot of different elements go into maintaining and managing a healthy substitute pool.   To overcome the challenges associated with the substitute shortage, districts […]

Recruiting & Hiring

Talk Data to Me: The State of the Instructional Teacher Shortage

The Frontline Research and Learning Institute recently published a research brief called “The State of the Instructional Teacher Shortage”. Following a basic supply and demand economic model, the analysis investigates the quantity of candidates applying for jobs (supply) as well as the availability of open positions (demand). Trends show changes to both sides of the […]

Student Data

Talk Data to Me: Supporting the Health Needs of Students and Staff

In early April, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said that schools should be reopened and “full-fledged in person” come fall 2021, regardless of vaccination status. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona echoed this in early May, saying that he expects a full return for all students in the fall. With most states no longer placing restrictions on school […]

Front & Center

A series showcasing various leaders in the K-12 space