- Number of Students: 660
- Percent Eligible for Free and Reduced Lunch: 10%
- Percent of Limited English Proficient: 2%
- Percent of Special Education: 9%
- White: 46%
- Black: 19%
- Hispanic: 20%
- Asian: 3%
- Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander: 1%
- American Indian or Alaska Native: 1%
- Multiracial: 10%
- Other: 0%
Randolph Elementary started the PLC journey in an effort to make a good school a great school. Commitments were made to have daily teaming time for all grade level teams, ensure a guaranteed and viable curriculum, and develop common formative and summative assessments. A mission of learning was established for the children and the adults at Randolph Elementary.
Our master schedule contains a period of teaming time within the school day in addition to a period for teachers to have a conference time. This allows all grade level teams to team together daily. Teams focus on the four essential questions: What do want our students to learn? How will we know if each student has learned it? How will we respond when some students do not learn it? And How can we extend and enrich the learning for students who have demonstrated proficiency?
This daily teaming time has been critical to the development of our professional learning community. During this teaming time, teachers design their own common assessments for their students and design their units of study. The team is critical in the development of the curriculum. Teams develop their own scope and sequence and are responsible for its implementation. They are the curriculum experts for their subject and grade level for our district. We do not have a Central Office who delivers Benchmark Tests to us nor gives us a curriculum to teach.
Our campus goal is supported by all. For example, all teams report to the Campus Improvement Committee on their progress towards meeting the goal. Teams share their data multiple times a year. They share their team goal that supports the campus goal, what they expect the students to know, how they are assessing their progress, how they are providing intervention and enrichment, and what their next steps are in order to meet their goal.
Faculty meetings are frequently focused on sharing professional development learning. We have developed a way to share out learning by having each member of a team meet with a small group. This has been very effective and feedback from teachers has been very positive and the comfort level to ask more questions in a small group setting has been noted. Every effort has been made to eliminate housekeeping items from faculty meetings.
The journey to becoming a successful PLC has been a process. While the journey started a decade ago, we continue to change and refine our practice of being members of the learning community. The mission at Randolph Elementary is simply “learning” and it is understood that the learning is for all who enter our community.
1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.
The first step Randolph Elementary School took in monitoring student learning was to develop common assessments. The teams took on the role of a central office curriculum department. They identified learning targets, developed their own scope and sequence, units of study, and common assessments.
When teachers designed their own common assessments, the team furthered developed their understanding of the curriculum. They became experts in curriculum and assessments. They developed their assessments and analyzed the data they receive from their own assessments plus the state assessments and let this data drive their instruction. They learned from what they had designed just as much as what the students have learned from the units of study.
Using backward design, teachers developed rigorous common summative assessments followed by formative assessments. The formative assessments were key in catching students during the unit of study that needed intervention. This has improved our core instruction. We have decreased the chances of a student learning content incorrectly, as intervention is almost immediate. All teams involve their students in monitoring their learning and setting goals. Student goal setting is part of our everyday habits.
2. Creating systems of intervention to provide students with additional time and support for learning.
When we first started an intervention model at Randolph Elementary School, we carved out time during the day and developed set times during the day for intervention or extension. We found this to be effective, but realized that from time to time, we were not providing intervention to each child prior to the end of a unit of study. Instead, we were waiting for summative assessment and then intervening. We soon realized this was definitely not in the best interest of the child. As a result, we had to change our instruction in order to provide intervention immediately through the use of formative assessment.
Our revised intervention model allows teachers to use formative assessment on a daily basis and intervene with a student immediately. If a student is struggling, the teacher is supported by their entire team. For example, if a student is struggling in a particular concept another teacher may work with that student and others who are experiencing similar difficulties. This allows fluid grouping of students on a specific intervention. Students that are experiencing difficulty in mastering the same concept would be clustered together, however it is based on why the student is struggling. For example, as 30% of our students are new to our district/school every year, students who have never received the prerequisite skills are clustered together. Another teacher may take the students that are struggling with comprehension in reading due to their fluency. All teachers support all students. Academic coaches, special education teachers, and/or behavior specialists also participate with the grade level teachers to provide intervention or enrichment for all students.
If a student continues to struggle a school wide support system is in place. The teacher and RtI coordinator will schedule a Student Intervention Team meeting to brainstorm and problem solve on how to best support the student. Members of this team may include a special education teacher, a behavior specialist, an academic coach, and/or a school counselor. Parents are involved in every part of this process and are present at the meetings.
3. Building teacher capacity to work as members of high performing collaborative teams that focus efforts on improved learning for all students.
One essential key to developing high performing collaborative teams is the establishment of designated teaming times during the instructional day. Library, Computers, Music, Spanish, and Art are included in the daily rotation and students attend P.E. daily. The master schedule gives teachers a daily teaming time in addition to their conference period. This precious treasure of time is key to the success of our teams. Teams set their own goals which in turn support our campus goal. By having a focus on what they want, they all work together and as a result become successful.
The team meetings are focused on meeting the team’s goals. The four questions are the key components of the team’s daily work. Teachers develop assessments, refine units of study, and analyze data from common formative and summative assessments, and plan for intervention and enrichment. Agendas are shared with administration and all faculty including administration are included in team meetings.
Special education teachers who serve students at a specific grade level attend the grade level team meetings for their students. Our goal is for our special education teachers to be content experts and develop the expertise our grade level teachers are striving for. Our Computer, Art, Music, Library, and Spanish teachers meet as a collaborative team as well. This interdisciplinary team sees all of the students in our school and they too develop a team goal that supports the campus goal. Instructional coaches support our goals by facilitating professional development, lesson planning, and curriculum development.
At Randolph Elementary we know that it takes everyone in the building to work together to support learning for all. In addition to teams focusing on students learning, the teams manage their own learning. Different teams will seek out their own book studies to assist the work of their team. We truly have become a true professional learning community but understand this will always be an ongoing process.
Achievement Data Files
Additional Achievement Data
We received Distinction Designations in Academic Achievement in ELAR/Reading, Science, Top 25 Percent Student Progress, and Top 25 Percent Closing Performance Gaps by the State of Texas on our 2017 Accountability Ratings.
www.niche.com rated our elementary school as the #1 elementary school in our county in August of 2018!