University Preparatory Academy has developed an approach to implement data-based "Individual Learning Team" meetings for teachers, parents and students. Individual Learning Teams can be utilized to support achievement by building a strong connection between students, parents and caregivers, teachers, and other staff. Student data is utilized and evaluated to ensure adequate progress and provide team members with high-quality, specific planning tools.
Learning Team Achievement and Accountability
Learning theorists agree (even when they differ on other things) that learning is an individual affair - we all learn at the "edges" of our own unique mental model of how the world works. By placing pictures of individualized student progress over time at the center of conversations between parents, teachers and students, the data-based Individual Learning Team meeting allows teachers to challenge students, enables them to use specific strengths and interests to address specific weaknesses, and enables parents to know the plan and follow up to see how it worked. It also permits teachers to see patterns of strengths and weaknesses in the classroom and to group students to focus on particular skills. The tracking mechanisms involved allow school administrators to reflect with individual teachers about how the data shaped their instructional design and delivery.
Finally, the model permits school administrators to correlate student success with particular instructional strategies, experiences or practices so that they can be extended or deepened. Tracking student achievement individually (with some degree of diagnostic specificity) is the first step toward systematically improving it.
Michigan Association of Public School Academies
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