Categories for Quality Leadership

How can schools best provide teacher inservice training?

November 12, 2020

Teacher Inservice Professional Development. he American education system values in-service training to improve teacher performance, spending an average of $18,000 annually per teacher. Like many promising practices, it has failed to produce as promised. Schools invest extensively in teacher induction in the early years of a teacher, supplemented with in-service training throughout the teacher’s career. Unfortunately, this training is often delivered in unproductive ways, for example, workshop sessions that commonly rely on passive didactic techniques, such as lecturing or reading, shown to have minimal or no impact on the teacher’s use of the practices in the classroom. This is especially true when the outcome, using the practices in the classroom, is assessed. Coaching-based clinical training, with the teacher practicing skills on students in a classroom setting and receiving feedback from the coach, has been found to produce the best results. Sustained professional development with scope and sequence curriculum, accompanied by manuals for interventions in which the teacher is being trained, is superior to single events. Computer-assisted instruction as a companion to systematic training techniques identified above has been found to be a cost-effective adjunct staff development tool.

Citation: Cleaver, S., Detrich, R., States, J. & Keyworth, R. (2020). Overview of Teacher Inservice. Oakland, CA: The Wing Institute.




What is the cost of coaching teachers?

November 12, 2020

Assessing the Cost of Instructional Coaching. Each year school systems spend approximately $15 million per school year, $230 per student, and $3,390 per teacher, totaling 2.9% of the operating budget, to provide a variety of professional development opportunities from workshops to coaching to whole-school development (Cleaver, 2020). Research suggests coaching is one of the most effective methods for increasing the effectiveness of professional development. 

Over the past twenty years, the popularity of school-based instructional coaching has grown. But one obstacle to the wide-spread use of coaching is the cost of delivering the service. This paper examines the resources needed for coaching and offers a framework for measuring these costs. The author finds coaching costs range from $3,260 to $5,220 per teacher. These are substantial expenses. Given limited education budgets, policymakers need to conduct cost/benefit analyses that compare traditional professional development methods such as workshops. This study lays the groundwork for cost-effectiveness studies by presenting a framework for measuring costs and reporting costs of a specific program.  

Another valuable resource for determining a return on investment for education interventions is Stewart Yeh’s 2007 study, The cost-effectiveness of five policies for improving student achievement. Yeh offers a framework for utilizing a practice effect size and costs of the practice to determine what method is best suited given a school’s current budget. Incorporating cost-benefit analyses into schools’ decision-making process is essential if educators make the most informed decisions impacting student outcomes. 

Citation: Knight, D. S. (2012). Assessing the cost of instructional coaching. Journal of Education Finance, 52-80.

Yeh, S. S. (2007). The cost-effectiveness of five policies for improving student achievement. American Journal of Evaluation28(4), 416-436.




How does professional development impact student mathematics and science outcomes?

November 10, 2020

Effects of Teacher Professional Development on Gains in Student Achievement: How Meta-Analysis Provides Scientific Evidence Useful to Education Leaders. This meta-analysis examines completed studies of effects of professional development for K-12 teachers of science and mathematics. The researchers wanted to answer the following questions: (1) What are the effects of content-focused professional development for math and science teachers on improving student achievement?; and (2) What characteristics of professional development programs (e.g., content focus, duration, coherence, active learning, and collective participation of teachers) explain the degree of effectiveness, and are the findings consistent with prior research on effective professional development? 

This meta-analysis of professional development programs in mathematics and science found that 16 studies reported significant effect sizes for teacher development in relation to improving student achievement. These studies reported effect sizes for student achievement gains for a treatment group as compared to a control group and the studies provided adequate data and documentation for the research team to compute or re-analyze effect sizes. The analysis also confirms the positive relationship to student outcomes of key characteristics of design of professional development programs. 

Citation: Blank, R. K., & De las Alas, N. (2009). The Effects of Teacher Professional Development on Gains in Student Achievement: How Meta Analysis Provides Scientific Evidence Useful to Education Leaders. Council of Chief State School Officers. One Massachusetts Avenue NW Suite 700, Washington, DC 20001.




What is corrective feedback?

October 27, 2020

Corrective Feedback Overview. orrective feedback is a form of performance feedback used to improve student achievement. Teachers provide feedback to students to reinforce expectations and to correct student errors during lessons. Feedback is often noted as the single most powerful tool available for improving student performance, and more than seven meta-analyses conducted since 1980 support this claim. Classroom teachers use corrective feedback as a teaching technique every day. The feedback may be as simple as giving praise, returning assignments the next day, immediately correcting student misconceptions, or as a component of active student responding. Other effective strategies rely on peer review or self-assessment to increase feedback. For the best results, feedback must meet these four conditions: (1) It is objective, reliable, measureable, and specific; (2) it provides information about what was done well, what needs improvement, and how to improve; (3) it is delivered frequently and immediately following performance; and (4) it is about performance rather than personal characteristics.

Citation: Guinness, K., Detrich, R., Keyworth, R. & States, J. (2020). Overview of Corrective Feedback. Oakland, CA: The Wing Institute.




What practices are critical for creating a school-wide behavior management system?

October 14, 2020

Sustaining and Scaling Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports: Implementation Drivers, Outcomes, and Considerations. Positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS) is a system-wide conduct management approach designed to increase student behavior consistency in schools. PBIS was introduced with the reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act in 1997. This paper examines the 25-year history of the PBIS implementation experience, including the core features of PBIS as a multi-tiered framework and the process and outcomes for implementing PBIS across over 26,000 schools. The authors summarize the national outcome data of PBIS implementation, and they propose future directions and considerations, improving scaling up services and sustainability of school-wide behavior management strategies.

Citation: Sugai, G., & Horner, R. H. (2020). Sustaining and scaling positive behavioral interventions and supports: Implementation drivers, outcomes, and considerations. Exceptional Children86(2), 120-136.




What classroom management strategies produce consistent results?

October 14, 2020

Evidence-based practices in classroom management: Considerations for research to practice. The purpose of this paper is to synthesize and summarize the research base on evidence-based classroom management strategies. Twenty practices are identified as having sufficient evidence to be recommended for use school-wide and in classrooms. An assessment tool is included for educators to evaluate and maximize the impact of potential classroom management practices.

Citation: Simonsen, B., Fairbanks, S., Briesch, A., Myers, D., & Sugai, G. (2008). Evidence-based practices in classroom management: Considerations for research to practice. Education and treatment of children, 351-380.




How can principals improve teacher classroom management?

October 14, 2020

Using Coaching with Video Analysis to Improve Teachers’ Classroom Management Practices: Methods to Increase Implementation Fidelity. Research strongly supports effective classroom management as essential for quality instruction and teacher satisfaction. Unfortunately, in-service training for teachers in classroom management practices frequently fails to achieve the desired results. Didactic lectures do not offer sufficient opportunities to practice new techniques, and little time is available for feedback on the effective use of newly acquired skills. Coaching with embedded video-analysis is one method for providing teacher consultation services utilizing technology to record teaching sessions, watch and analyze recordings, identify a target area for improvement, and use the information gained to improve practice. As general education teachers’ role in working with students with challenging conduct grows, coaching with video-analysis may improve implementation fidelity and sustainability of evidence-based classroom management practices. This study finds coaching with video-analysis increased the implementation of evidence-based classroom management practices.

Citation: Lane, C., Neely, L., Castro-Villarreal, F., & Villarreal, V. (2020). Using Coaching with Video Analysis to Improve Teachers’ Classroom Management Practices: Methods to Increase Implementation Fidelity. Journal of Technology and Teacher Education28(3), 543-569.




What are effects of principals on critical outcomes?

September 24, 2020

The Effect of Principal Behaviors on Student, Teacher, and School Outcomes: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of the Empirical Literature. School principals are commonly associated with improving teaching and learning conditions in schools, but what does the research tell us about the leadership strategies principals should focus on to boost student and teacher outcomes. This study offers four chief findings. First, there is evidence for the relationship between principal behaviors and student achievement. Secondly, there is evidence to support the school principal’s impact on teacher job satisfaction and effectiveness. Thirdly, research supports the role principals play in improving teacher instructional practices. Finally, principals are essential to sustaining the overall organizational health of the school. The study also concludes that more research is needed to establish a cause and effect relationship lacking in the current research base.

Citation: Liebowitz, D. D., & Porter, L. (2019). The effect of principal behaviors on student, teacher, and school outcomes: A systematic review and meta-analysis of the empirical literature. Review of Educational Research89(5), 785-827.




How powerful is leadership?

September 23, 2020

The Effect of Educational Leadership on Students’ Achievement: A Cross-Cultural Meta-Analysis Research on Studies between 2008 and 2018. This meta-analysis examines leadership approaches and the relationship between educational leadership and student achievement. In the literature review identified 151 articles/dissertations, for inclusion in this study. The results revealed educational leadership has a medium-level effect on students’ achievement. 

Citation: Karadag, E. (2020). The effect of educational leadership on students’ achievement: a cross-cultural meta-analysis research on studies between 2008 and 2018. Asia Pacific Education Review21(1), 49-64.

Link: The Effect of Educational Leadership on Students’ Achievement: A Cross-Cultural Meta-Analysis Research on Studies between 2008 and 2018



How effective is teacher induction? (Wing Institute Original Paper)

September 4, 2020

Teacher Induction. Teacher induction is a set of practices that help transferring and beginning teachers become competent and effective instructors. The goals of induction are to improve instructional practices; to help teachers in their first years understand and effectively integrate into school and community cultures; and ultimately to improve pupil learning. By supporting the teachers and facilitating their socialization into the profession, school systems could potentially reduce the significant turnover rate of teachers in the first 5 years of employment. Despite its substantial cost, induction has failed to meet most of the stated goals. Research reveals that despite setting high expectations, current models fall short in selecting evidence-based approaches for accomplishing the task. Goals and practices for induction activities are not clearly defined nor is performance effectively monitored. Finally, most models fail to provide effective implementation strategies necessary for sustainability. The overall message is that comprehensive teacher induction has the potential to positively impact teaching practices and pupil learning, but it requires careful reconsideration of current conceptual, procedural, and empirical foundations of the practice.

Citation: Cleaver, S., Detrich, R., States, J. & Keyworth, R. (2020). Overview of Teacher Induction. Oakland, CA: The Wing Institute.