School Improvement in Maryland

Engage Staff in Analyzing the Data

Analyzing your data is a process in which you will want to involve your entire staff. Good data-driven dialogue leads to data-driven decisions. If you engage staff in an ongoing data dialogue about what the data is telling you, it is much more likely they will feel ownership for the data-based decisions you collectively make.

Student progress in reading and math for the elementary and middle school grades is measured by the Maryland School Assessment (MSA) or—for a small number of students with profound disabilities—the Alternate MSA (ALT-MSA). The High School Assessments are used to measure reading and math for high school grades.

There are numerous resources on MDK12 to help you engage your staff in analyzing their state assessment data. Low performance areas will drive your school improvement goals.

How do you engage staff in clarifying your problem?

Now that you have identified your low performance areas, you are ready to clarify your problem. Key questions that need addressing during the problem clarification process include the following:

  • Do all teachers (at each grade level) understand the target?
  • Do all teachers teach and assess the content standards their students are expected to know?
  • Do all teachers know where each of their students is in relationship to the content standards?
  • Do all teachers use that information to inform their instruction?
  • Do all teachers monitor student progress in a format that will inform instruction and program interventions?

The answers to these questions will lead to an identification of the school improvement strategies needed if the school is going to see improved student achievement and the professional development needed to build teacher capacity to implement these strategies.

Additional MDK12 resources that will assist your school in clarifying your problem in a low performing area are listed below: