Rocklin Academy

  1. PLC Story
  2. PLC Practices
  3. Achievement Data
  4. Awards
  5. Resources

We began our journey as a Professional Learning Community (PLC) over ten years ago. Although our state test scores were high, further analysis of the data showed a significant number of students who were not proficient. This led us to ask the questions: What do we want our students to learn, how do we know if they have learned it, what are we going to do if they have not learned it, and how can we support students who are already proficient? With Learning by Doing as our guide, and working closely with a learning community coach, we focused our efforts on creating a culture that was focused on student learning and results. Our administration and leadership teams have attended workshops with Rick and Becky DuFour, Mike Mattos, Tom Many, and Ken O’Connor. To this date, approximately two-thirds of our faculty has attended a Solution Tree workshop focusing on PLC’s.

For the first year of implementation, time was given within the school day for grade level teams to meet every 3 weeks. Floating substitutes were utilized and administration facilitated the Collaborative Inquiry (CI) meetings to provide structure, protocols, and support with the intent to develop leaders within each grade level. For the entire first year, administration attended all CI meetings. Administration gradually moved from the role of facilitator to coach as the leadership team members facilitated the meetings. 

Rocklin Academy is a public charter school under the direction of Rocklin Academy Family of Schools in Placer County.  Initially one school, due to facility constraints with the district which houses the schools, the school was forced to split between two separate campuses, approximately 10-minutes apart.  Together, we are one Professional Learning Community.  We teach students in kindergarten through sixth grade, with three classes per grade level.  One class per grade level is housed on our Meyers campus and two classes per grade level are housed on our Turnstone campus.  Over the years, we have developed successful systems to sustain a thriving PLC to positively impact student learning.  

1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.

Rocklin Academy exemplifies Learning Forward’s definition of professional development by embodying the practice of Collaborative Inquiry - a systematic, purposeful process during which teachers and administration work together to analyze student data and develop tiered instructional strategies that address the needs of all students, including those who require additional support, those who are close to proficiency, and the students who have achieved proficiency and are ready to delve more deeply into a concept. Through our Collaborative Inquiry (CI) process, teams develop SMART goals based on data from common assessments that were scored using common rubrics.  

It is not the fact that teams of teachers collaborate which is important, but rather that they collaborate with a clarity of commitment to ongoing learning and progress, examining student work on a regular basis and creating strategic goals to improve achievement.  Teachers continually improve their practice by regularly assessing student achievement, evaluating the effectiveness of teaching strategies and by learning from each other- by daily sharing the expertise that exists within our school. If, at the conclusion of a four-week Collaborative Inquiry cycle, assessment results show that academic goals have not been met, teachers re-evaluate and adjust instructional strategies and readdress areas of need until all students reach mastery.

The data utilized to identify common areas of need come from both summative and formative assessments.  Rocklin Academy students in  kindergarten through sixth grade participate in taking the NWEA MAP assessment three times a year to measure academic growth.  Additionally, grade level teams develop common assessments, using the data management system Illuminate Education to compile and share results.  Using these common assessments to continually check for understanding allows teachers to differentiate instruction and target specific skills.  Many forms of Common Formative Assessments (CFA) are given daily to closely monitor student growth and quickly identify any areas of intervention needed.  An example a common CFA at Rocklin Academy is our ‘exit ticket’ which is given at the end of a math lesson.  This data is used to develop differentiated groups so students’ needs are targeted at their level; whether students need additional time and support, are on target, or need their learning extended.  Another example of a CFA is during reading or writing block where teachers continually work with individual students on these skills, giving immediate and specific feedback to support their learning.  Each grade level has something called an Enrichment Block (E-Block) three times a week, where no new instruction occurs.  Our CFA data is used at this time where each student works on specific and targeted essential standards based on their needs.  This is a time where our intervention teachers (called Enrichment Support Specialists), and classroom teachers work with small groups or individuals to best support academic growth.  Each Tuesday, teachers are given time to work within their PLT (professional learning team) to analyze student data, develop their curriculum and participate in new professional learning. One full day every month, teaching teams are given a day to analyze multiple measures of common student data, develop a SMART goal with tiered interventions, and participate in meaningful professional learning.  

2. Creating systems of intervention to provide students with additional time and support for learning.

At Rocklin Academy, we believe that all students can learn at high levels and work collaboratively to meet the needs of all learners.  Within the classroom, teachers work to provide additional time and support for students who may be struggling with specific targets or essential standards.  Our teachers share students and work together to develop tiered instructional strategies to meet the needs of our learners.  If these interventions are not successful, teachers may extend their teaching team to include our intervention teachers. Identified students may be pulled to the intervention room individually or work in small groups to focus intensively on these targets.  

Another system of intervention is our common Enrichment Block where no new material is introduced.  Two days a week, intervention teachers push into each grade level’s classroom at a common time to provide intensive support to small groups of students.  Additional E-Block time is protected in each grade level team, and is coordinated by the classroom teachers.  This is a time where specific and targeted interventions are provided in math and Language Arts to support growth in essential standards.  If students are on target for essential standards, they are given the opportunity to deepen their understanding of the standards and/or apply their learning in creative ways to demonstrate higher levels of thinking.  Extensions may include applying knowledge across topics to incorporate social studies and science from our rich Core Knowledge curriculum.  Working together, using common data, and sharing all students, we have found that our systems of support are effective.

 

 

3. Building teacher capacity to work as members of high performing collaborative teams that focus efforts on improved learning for all students.

With essential outcomes in mind, pacing guides and common formative and summative assessments are utilized to ensure that all students are able to reach proficiency in grade-level standards and that they will gain the appropriate knowledge, skills, and ability to effectively apply their knowledge.  Moreover, every week teachers engage in high-quality professional learning during purposeful, goal-oriented, grade-level team and faculty meetings. Each Professional Development topic is determined by current student data which drives instruction so that all students are learning at high levels. Teachers whose data demonstrates effective strategies share their methods and ideas with colleagues in order to replicate their success. Ongoing professional development is further embedded in the school day through peer observations and instructional walkthroughs targeted to specific student learning needs.  

Our PLC not only includes the grade level teachers, but also includes our Ed Specialists, administrators, Instructional Coaches, SLP, and Enrichment Support Specialists.  Teams also lean on the expertise of our ELD and GATE specialist as well.  Rocklin Academy has been closely tracking real time data for specific subgroups of students that include:  Special Education, English Learners, Students with a 504 plan, and Socioeconomically Disadvantaged Students.  This specific data is captured on our SMART goal template which allows PLTs to monitor student growth and celebrate success.  In order to meet the needs of all students, we find the greater team of experts enable the PLTs to dig deeper and provide extensive knowledge in order to develop effective instructional strategies with positive results.  

One Monday each month, teachers are provided additional time to analyze data and develop SMART goals with tiered interventions.  This is a full day where students are not in school. This is also a time where teachers further develop our K-12 Vertical Articulation Plan, which was identified as a need during our strategic planning process during the 2016-17 school year, to continually build a cohesive K-12 educational program across all of our schools.  This professional learning time is also utilized for essential standards work, such as improving our common ELA and Math assessments and rubrics, analyzing our exemplar rigor, and ensuring an overall common understanding of the essential standards taught with the best instructional strategies.

Achievement Data Files

Additional Achievement Data

 Rocklin Academy, since its opening in 2001-02, has consistently been a high performing school and with the inception of our professional learning community we have continued to be one of the highest performing schools in the Greater Sacramento area and Placer County.  Showcased is our Statewide testing data for the past three years.  Also included are our district SMART goals and results from 2016-17 school year.  The tables demonstrate growth and continued areas of need.  Rocklin Academy uses CAASPP data to identify trends for our district, school sites, and grade levels.  This information helps our organization develop next steps to continually reflect and grow to be an effective family of schools.  

CAASPP (California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress)  

Percentage of Students that Met or Exceeded Standards: ELA

Grade Level

2014-15

2015-16

2016-17

 

Rocklin

Academy

California

Rocklin

Academy

California

Rocklin

Academy

California

3

63

38

67

43

77

44

4

83

40

65

44

63

45

5

80

44

80

49

86

47

6

72

42

83

48

79

47

 

 

Percentage of Students that Met or Exceeded Standards: Math

 

Grade Level

2014-15

2015-16

2016-17

 

Rocklin

Academy

California

Rocklin

Academy

California

Rocklin

Academy

California

3

74

40

65

46

76

47

4

87

35

73

38

66

40

5

74

30

75

33

80

34

6

67

33

70

35

79

36

 

CAASPP (California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress)  

Percentage of Students that Met or Exceeded Standard for:

Rocklin Academy Elementary Schools

Testing Year

ELA for Rocklin Academy

ELA for California

Math for Rocklin Academy

Math for California

2015-16

78

49

71

37

2016-17

77

48

79

37

 




  • Official Solution Tree PLC Visitation Site
  • National Blue Ribbon Award 2016
  • California Gold Ribbon School 2015
  • California Distinguished School 2010
  • Learning Forward’s Shirley Hord Learning Team Award 2010
  • Official Core Knowledge Visitation School

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