Data Decisions in Deeper Waters?



    Data Decisions in Deeper Waters?

    Posted by Kristina Clecak on Mar 13, 2017

    Digging for Disaster or Decision Making?

    Educators across the Nation have a few things on their mind this time every year, the loss of one hour, thanks to Daylight Savings, and the proximity looming of “end of the year” state high-stake-test, known as PARCC or SBAC. Moreover, and realistically teachers have most recently given some form of a Formative Assessment, Interim Assessment or Benchmark, to analyze how students are performing on grade level standards and/or creating an action plan for the next upcoming weeks to readdress gaps and needs to prepare for the upcoming PARCC assessments,  

    or SBAC smarter balance assessments. Additionally, districts have seen the power of Common Formative Assessments across the district to better justify educational programs that are or aren’t working successfully for all children.


    That leaves the question looming, what are educators seeing? Disaster in their data? Or information to strategically adjust and provide some changes to teaching to better ensure mastery. We hope for the later. However, even with the mindset of excellence and laser-like focus that hundreds of teachers work through, it is realistic to find some disappointments in the data and possibly for that split second, one might see a “disaster” and thus, as so many teachers know, one must move past this and refine instruction to move the “disaster” to decision-making.

    Decision-making attributes:

    • PLC – Professional Learning Communities by content Departments or Grade levels meet to discuss data and work through the action steps needed in the next 2, 4 or 6 week instructional schedule. Finding strategic steps to addressing needs without losing the pacing and rigor of the year’s scope and instructional sequence.
    • Weekly collaborative discussions with teams to check in on progress and adjust accordingly.
    • Ensuring a Mindset of success and belief in our own teacher efficacy and belief in student achievement, at any given instructional level or needs.
    • Supporting the “academic language” needed to attain mastery on various technology enhanced items (TEI). Practice online assessments and TEI on weekly skills, quizzes and other instructional learning.
    • Rigorous objectives and vigorous assessment platforms to prepare for mastery of academic standards.


    Lastly, as an instructional leader and advocate for student success, I am motivated beyond belief, to continuously witness our amazing teaching force across hundreds of schools making an impact and without a doubt, moving from data digging to action oriented steps for student success. Therefore, these educators are far from any disaster and completely on track for success.

    Is your school, team or district systemically making strides right now? I would love to highlight your district and share your insight. Let’s connect.



    Topics: assessment, SBAC Assessments, Assessment Management

    Written by Kristina Clecak

    Kristina has been in public education for nearly 20 years. Serving as Lead Principal, Equity Data Instructional Coach and Classroom teacher at various grades. Her skills set and laser-like focus of Instructional pathways, mindset and data-driven goals have been at the heart of her work. Awards winning practitioner who holds multiple Masters degrees and Nationally Board Certified & Recognized in K-12 Literacy, she is no stranger to on-going, life time learning. She will continue to say her greatest accomplishment and purpose remains with equitable and cultural responsive and enlightened instruction for ALL students. Inclusive opportunities and the greatest expectations, along with support for all students, is her daily drive. She serves as the Senior Account Manager and Educational Innovation specialist for SchoolCity, Inc and continues her passion for Student Success, Quality of Instruction and Digital Platforms that reach all Students in their learning.

    Imagine a dynamic, equitable and effective "city" full of innovation, collaboration, educational drive and inclusivity for all, while overlapping with digital brilliance. Welcome to SchoolCity Suite, a place for all professional learning communities to thrive and make an impact.




    Did you know...

    SchoolCity continues to replicate and mimic current academic technology tools and make on-going adjustments, with various Technology Enhanced Items (TEI). Thus supporting students all year round to better prepare for true mastery of all skills and standards in a given grade.
    • Constructed Response (CR Items) - Requires a written response from the students and is scored with a rubric.
    • Evidence Based Selected Response (EBSR) - Requires students to answer a two part question in which Part B provides textual evidence for the answer in Part A.
    • Explicit Constructed Response (XCR)- Requires students to type / write an exact response to a question which is then automatically scored by the system in the online assessments. (aka short answer)
    • Hot Text (HT) - Require the student to select words, phrases, or sentences within a given text to answer the question.
    • Inline Choice (IC) - Requires the student to select the correct answer from a drop down menu. Answers are automatically scored by the system.