• Common Core State Standards, Factors Influencing Student Achievement, Responsive Coaching, Teacher Evaluation, Autism

  • JP partners with schools and districts across the country to provide intensive professional development for scientifically-based programs.

  • JP brings together several critical factors in the development of an effective school.

  • JP Associates offers our sites grant writing assistance. Take advantage of our experience writing successful grant requests.

  • JP works with schools providing training on how to ameliorate teacher weaknesses brought to light through the process of teacher evaluation.
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How to Communicate Clearly During Organizational Change

Jun17-13-544602471

 

A former colleague liked to remind leaders of their impact by telling them, “There are children you’ve never met who know your name.” The point was simple: Their followers were also moms or dads who were going home and talking about their day in front of their children. And you, their leader, had a starring role in that story. As leaders, we are far more visible than we realize, and we are sending signals to followers all the time — even when we don’t realize it.

And while sending the right signals to our followers is important at any time, it is especially important during times of strategic change, when followers are trying to make sense of a new “ask” from the organization, in the context of all the existing asks they are grappling with.

Why, then, is it so hard for leaders to send clear, effective signals to followers?

In my experience of working with leaders, and in my research asking followers what they need during times of strategic change, there are three main ways in which leaders too often send confusing signals to their organizations. Get them right, and you can signal clearly and effectively; fail to pay attention to how and what you are signaling in these three modes, and you will have confusion at best — and at worst, the opposite of the strategic changes you’ve asked for.

Signal No. 1: Telling your organization what you want

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What Elements Make Teacher Professional Development High Quality?

JP's customized professional development meets all six criteria of the Every Student Succeeds Act! Contact us to learn how we can meet your professional development needs. or 516-561-7803.

 

Image result for Teacher Professional development

 

A report last fall found that the majority of professional development—80 percent—doesn't align with the new federal definition of high-quality training. So, what is working?

The fourth and final installment of a report series by the Frontline Research & Learning Institute, released last week, highlighted district best practices on high-quality PD. The institute is a division of Frontline Education, which is a K-12 software company. For this report series, researchers examined a nationally representative sample of 203 school districts, which included data from over 107,000 teachers who participated in almost 377,000 activities over a five-year span (between 2011 and 2016).

The federal K-12 law, the Every Student Succeeds Act, defines high-quality PD as meeting six criteria: sustained, intensive, collaborative, job-embedded, data-driven, and classroom focused. Sarah Silverman, the vice president of Whiteboard Advisors, an education policy research firm, and one of the authors of the report, said in an interview that there wasn't a clear framework of what these criteria mean, so the report defined key metrics for each category: 

  • Sustained: taking place over an extended period that's longer than one day. Only 13 percent of PD activities that teachers enrolled in consisted of more than three meetings.
  • Intensive: focusing on a discrete concept, practice, or program. The average length of PD activities was 4.5 hours.
  • Job-embedded: taking place in real time in the classroom. Sixty-three percent of PD activities studied were offered within the school system.
  • Collaborative: involving multiple educators working on the same concept or practice to gain a shared understanding. Just 9 percent of enrolled activities were collaborative.
  • Data-driven: based on and responsive to real-time information about the needs of teachers and their students. Only 8 percent of activities that were offered aligned to this format. 
  • Classroom-focused: relevant to the instructional process. Eighty-five percent of PD activities aligned with this standard.

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Setting Teachers Up for Success

Coahing and upfront coaching

Introducing JP’s Re-Start Academy (RESA)

retention

The nation’s current teacher shortage is having an intense impact on the school system. In 2013–14, 62% of school districts had unfilled teaching positions three months into the school year. 

In the same school year, close to 1,000 teachers were on substitute credentials—a 29% increase from the previous year. With one of the highest turnover rates of any state and 24% of the workforce eligible to retire by June 2018, the future outlook points to continued shortages.

(A Coming Crisis Teacher Report)

Among all beginning teachers in 2007–08, 10 percent did not teach in 2008–09, 12 percent did not teach in 2009–10, 15 percent did not teach in 2010–11, and 17 percent did not teach in 2011–12.  Voices from the field tell us the trend has continued!

Public School Teacher Attrition and Mobility in the First Five Years

Interested in preventing teacher burnout?

Faced with filling teacher vacancies every year?

Want strategies that address teacher retention?

JP can help you address these and other needs.

With over a quarter of a century of experience in designing and implementing professional development to thousands of schools JP can assist you in creating a plan that will work for you.

RESA Academies focus on preventing high teacher attrition identifying it as the one factor within a school’s sphere of influence.

Strategy: RESA (Re-Start Academies)

RESA Academies provide a two-pronged approach to the challenge of teacher retention. The first prong targets new teachers (1-5 years in the field) providing training that can be implemented at intervals during the school year.  Information and strategies are based on current data collection identifying reasons teacher are leaving the field. Training is supported by ongoing coaching on a regular basis by trained School Improvement Specialists. 

The second prong focuses on school leadership and their role in creating a culture that supports teachers and develops a teacher-leadership pipeline.  Strategies presented include both a focus on classroom support and establishing school-wide processes and policies.

An integral element of both prongs is the identification of local teachers/administrators who can be trained as coaches so the project can sustain itself. 

Objectives:

  • To improve teacher retention
  • To establish effective and evidenced based mentoring
  • To create positive school environment via collaborative efforts among districts and schools and schools and staff and community
  • To provide training for principals/leaders enabling them to create and support an environment/culture that affects teachers’ decisions to remain or leave the field. 

5 ways teachers can improve student learning based on current brain research

plastic brain

How students can better overcome language and reading problems thanks to the plastic brain and teacher know-how.

 

The brain is an experience-dependent organ. From our very earliest days, the brain begins to map itself to our world as we experience it through our senses. The mapping is vague and fuzzy at first, like a blurred photograph or an un-tuned piano. However, the more we interact with the world, the more well-defined our brain maps become until they are fine-tuned and differentiated. But each person’s map will vary, with some sensory experiences more distinct than others depending on the unique experiences and the clarity and frequency of the sensations he or she has experienced.

Educators can positively influence students’ learning by understanding how the brain is shaped by their early experiences—and how it can be rewired and reorganized to work more quickly and efficiently.

The Plastic Brain and the Critical Period

Brain plasticity, or neuroplasticity, refers to the brain’s ability to change with experience. In infancy and early childhood, a brain is so “plastic” that its structure is easily changed by simple exposure to new things in the environment. This time is sometimes called “the critical period,” or “the sensitive period.” [NOTE: the term ‘critical period’ although popular a couple of decades ago it is rarely used anymore because we understand plasticity better and realize new skills can be acquired long after the early developmental period, hence it is not really “critical”.]

Consider, for example, how babies easily learn the sounds of language and words by listening to their parents speak. Inside the brain, what this learning looks like is the brain actually reorganizing itself to change its own structure and create new sound maps that reflect the sounds of their native language. These sound maps are then interconnected with other maps and nodes to form interconnected networks so sound can be linked to meaning.

Networks can be expansive. For example, the sound map needed to recognize the word “pen” might first be connected to the meaning connoting a writing instrument, but over time, “pen” might be part of a network for comprehending “pen” as a verb meaning to write, then part of a word referring to legibility, “penmanship” and perhaps later to farm regions, like a pig pen.  Networks will also develop to allow words to be used in grammatical sentences then organized for reading.

 

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  • Detailed Needs Assessment
  • Customized Professional Development
  • Grant-writing
  • Strategies for serving students with Autism
  • Creating a positive school/classroom culture
  • Leadership training and coaching
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Effective Instructional Practices
  • Differentiating Instruction
  • Effective Reading Instruction
  • Job-embedded, side-by-side, onsite coaching
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