Evanston High School

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

***PROMISING PRACTICES SCHOOL***

Evanston High School is a small community in southwestern Wyoming. We are nestled below the Uinta Mountains of Utah in the frozen tundra of Wyoming. 

Uinta County is designated as the second poorest county in Wyoming. We are primarily an agricultural, manufacturing, and natural gas producing county.

In August of 2017, Uinta County School District #1 traveled to Sheridan, Wyoming for a conference with Dr. Thomas Many. The title of the conference was, PLC Lite vs PLC Right. This was our first look as a district at the PLC process. We left there with a foundation for the vision of what we wanted to accomplish as a school and District.

In the fall of 2017, we began the work of collaborative teams. That work included the prioritization of standards, writing common assessments, and developing proficiency scales. We also instituted a half-day Friday program called TGIF. This was a program that kept students on campus that had a D or F in a class.

Our next large area of growth came in 2018 when we took our steering committee to Salt Lake for an RTI conference. During the conference, Mike Mattos encouraged us to move from TGIF (Friday only for students that are passing classes) to a system during the day that supported all students and their needs. We worked with Pioneer Middle School to create our own intervention/extension time. We have since purchased the Software from their team and fully implemented the same program at EHS called Devil Pride Time. He also encouraged us to change our bell schedule to embed time during the day for student intervention/extension and teacher collaboration. We immediately began the process and switched the schedule for the following school year.

Since we began the PLC journey, 90 percent of our secondary teachers have attended a PLC institute. We have also attended the Art and Science of Teaching by Jan Hoegh and brought her into our district multiple times to support us in the journey.

Throughout this time, we have seen consistent growth in our student achievement. Our growth is due to the hard work of our staff in implementing a guaranteed and viable curriculum and using our systems of support through our RTI model. As a result of this hard work, we have successfully become a High-Reliability School in level one and have been greenlighted for our level two certification.

This last year, we changed our steering committee to a guiding coalition where we have created a new mission, vision, collective commitments, and school goals.  We have been working in PCL collaborative teams for nearly 5 years and felt that a reboot of the basics was necessary.  This focus also brought us back to ensuring that we are answering the 4 PLC questions with fidelity in our departmentmental collaborative teams. We have also always struggle with school-wide goals, and departmental student achievement goals.

What do we want all students to know and be able to do? - Since the beginning or our journey, we have worked diligently with Jan Hoegh, Maria Nielson and others to make sure that we have a guaranteed and viable curriculum throughout our school system and specifically at the high school. We started by indepth analysis of our standards.  We spent time prioritizing the standards and breaking them into clear learning targets and proficiency scales for clarity in our assessment development. Maria worked with us extensively with our 15 day plans and ensuring that we have repeated common assessments throughout each unit of instruction. The assessments that we developed are used to monitor student learning and provide the necessary support and enrichment on each particular learning target.

How will we know if they learn it? - Uinta County School District #1 has worked with Jan Hoegh as a consultant for our assessment system. Jan has helped us develop quality assessments that measure the essence of each learning target linked to our prioritized standards and skills. Our collaborative teams have developed and use common assessments to measure student learning. Our collaborative teams are working through data analysis and becoming more proficient at using common data to: clearly identify who needs more support in the classroom (tier 1), who need our tier two support or (Devil Pride Time), and who ultimately needs our tier three support classrooms. 

How we respond when some students do not learn? - Our guiding coalition members attended the TRI conference with Mike Mattos in Salt Lake City. Since then we have successfully implemented a tier 2 system (Devil Pride Time), we have used our newly alligned assessments to improve our quick support for our tier 1 support for all students, and we have implemented tier 3 supportive classrooms in Algebra 1, English 9 and our ELL classroom. Each of these classrooms have a combination of special education and non IEP students. They are team taught and have para professional support as well. We are seeing amazing growth by our lowest performing students in each of these classrooms.

How will we extend the learning of students who are already proficient? - EHS has used part of our tier 2 support (Devil Pride Time) to enrich our students. Our top students are finding the 30 minutes of additional support time to be extremely helpful in our AP, and concurrent college courses. We also dedicate time in each department weekly to offer students support classes that are designed for enrichment of the learning targets. High schools are a rich way of supporting students with the enrichment they need through our upper level course offerings. We still have lots of room to grow in this area. 

We continue to work on the consistency and quality of our collaborative teams in order to ensure high levels of learning for all students. We are undergoing a culture change that is exciting and positive. We look forward to our continued growth and learning.

 

1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.

Evanston High School is committed to implementing a guaranteed and viable curriculum. Teams began by unpacking and prioritizing essential standards by course. Common assessments were created and embedded in units of study to ensure students receive additional time and support throughout the unit rather than waiting until the end of the unit. Content teams frequently adjust and change year-long pacing guides to ensure the viability of the guaranteed and viable curriculum. State standards and assessment blueprints are references while designing pacing guides and units of study.

Common formative assessment data is reviewed frequently to inform student and adult learning. Based on common formative assessment data, teams assign students weekly to tier 2 Devil Pride Time intervention and extension.

 We no longer gauge our success based on teaching but on student learning. All decisions made at Evanston High School are based on high levels of learning for ALL students. 

 
 

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

Evanston High School has implemented a multi-tiered support system for interventions and extensions. We have followed the RTI model and continue to make changes to different aspects of our system.

 Our tier 1 focus in the classroom is to ensure that all students master prioritized standards. We have focused our team’s work on quality first-time instruction and assessments.

 Our tier 2 focus is our Devil Pride Time. Devil Pride Time allows teachers to make assignments by student by standard. Devil Pride Time is directive and specific. This process happens weekly. We offer Devil Pride Time three times a week for thirty minutes. Each department determines placement based on common assessment data for the week. Departments collaborate and job share so that teachers can teach students from other teachers focused on a specific learning target. Departments also determine the extension topics that align with the priority standards.

Each week of our Devil Pride Time starts on the previous Thursday. Our collaborative teams in their common planning, review weekly data, choose topics for support around learning targets, and assign students that need those specific supports to the appropriate class. Friday and Monday are when students begin to assign themselves for support if they have not been assigned. The administrative team reviews the assignments and makes additional assignments if students have not been assigned to an event.

We piloted a tier 3 course in Algebra 1 this year. We created a double-blocked team-taught course with additional para support to tackle our most struggling mathematicians. We modeled this after our neighboring school. After our first year, we were able to see tremendous growth. We grew at nearly three times the rate of the state average on the state assessment. We were able to move 4 of the students to proficiency in one year. For the 2022-2023 school year, we will have double blocked courses in algebra 1 and English 9 and our ELL class will have additional support to help with our Hispanic population. We have also changed our physical science, biology, geometry, and geography to a more supportive tier-three classroom where we have identified students with needs and are providing more targeted support with multiple staff members.

Our summer school program has also been completely revamped. Any students that have been identified as losing credit for academic needs are brought into summer school to target the specific concepts and learning they did not master during the school year. Students are then expected to remediate their learning until they have shown proficiency. Once they have demonstrated proficiency in all of their coursework, they are free to have their summer. This year we had around 125 students attend summer school. Of the students that attended summer school, all but three were able to reach proficiency in their courses and recapture credit for the course. We had three students that completed partial proficiency and we have created a game plan to address their deficiencies this coming year. All of our seniors were able to reach proficiency and receive their diplomas. Summer school was a tremendous success.

 
 

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

High-performing collaborative teams work in collective cycles of inquiry to improve student learning. Our continued focus on the four PLC questions has helped us stay dialed in on individual student progress.

  1. What do we want our students to know and be able to do?

  2. How will we know if they have learned it?

  3. How do we provide intervention when students have not reached mastery on the standard or target?

  4. How do we extend the curriculum when students have mastered the standard or target? 

 

Teams continually modify the content and assessments in our guaranteed and viable curriculum. The continued use of common formative assessment data is the catalyst for making instructional adjustments. Students are provided extra time and support during the day during tier 2 Devil Pride time. Collaborative teams track individual student progress with each priority standard and intervene until the goal is reached.

 

Achievement Data Files

Additional Achievement Data

Evanston High School is excited about the growth and changes we are seeing in our school data. Our RTI model embedded in the school day ensures that all students will master course-identified priority standards to ensure a guaranteed and viable curriculum. 

 

We have seen growth in our WYTOPP assessment over the last four years from:

  • 37%-58%,(Grade 9) and 44%-59% (Grade 10) in ELA, 

  • 44%-45%,(Grade 9) and 46%-51% (Grade 10) in mathematics,

  • 47%-49% in science (Grade 10) 

 

Even through COVID, we continued our upward trajectory of growth. We continue to be above the state average in every tested subject area. This is a stark contrast from our data 6-10 years ago. Historically in the bottom third of the state, we are now in the top third.

 

Another goal we have is to increase access and student achievement in our AP courses and exams. In 2007, we had 40 students participate in AP courses. Our number of students passing the exam was increasing until COVID hit and we are hoping to get back on the growth trajectory. The last recorded year we had 187 completed exams. This year we have 270 AP course enrollments, and all those students will take the exams in May.

The ACT performance for all juniors at EHS increased as well until COVID. We increased from 18.0 to 19.6 (Average score) but the test we took after the COVID quarantine was back down to 16.9 (we did not receive an official report that year). Our newest 2022 data shows that we are back to where we were prior to Covid with an 18.9 (Average). We look forward to getting back to our growth trajectory in future years. Regarding our graduating class ACT, we increased from 19.4 in 2017 to 21.1 in 2020. We went from below the state average to above.

Disaggregated Data:

WYTOPP and ACT Data Strengths: 66% of our white females and 67% of our multi-racial students were proficient or advanced in 9th grade ELA. 74% of our white females, 68% of our white males, and 67% of our multi-racial students were proficient or advanced in 10th grade ELA. 67% of our multi-racial students were proficient in 9th-grade math. 67% of our multi-racial, 60% of white females, and 59% of white males were proficient or advanced in 10th-grade math. Our ACT and WYTOPP results have similar patterns. We are closing in on an average ACT score of 21. We have had a long-standing goal of reaching a 21 composite average for several years. With specific tiered support, we will be able to reach this goal.

WYTOPP and ACT Areas of Concern:  Across the board in all assessment areas our Hispanic students are underperforming. They are performing at a rate around 30% less than their white counterparts. We have spent considerable time and effort as a school and have come to the realization that we are having the most success as we deal with each individual student in our tier 1, 2, and 3 supports. We have also initiated an intensive tier 3 support for students this year that should produce results. Our ACT results show the same pattern as our WYTOPP where we have our Hispanic students underperforming by about two points in all testable areas of the ACT.

 

 
 
  • Evanston High School has been recognized by US News and World Report in 2015, 2019, and 2021 for being a top-tier high school.
  • Evanston High School was awarded for being on the AP Honor roll in 2021
  • Evanston High School is certified as a Safe and Collaborative high School by the Marzano Institute for High-Reliability Schools.
  • Evanston High School is certified as being a school for Effective Teaching in every Classroom for the Marzano High-Reliability Schools level two.
  • Evanston High School had a National Merit Scholar finalist in 2021.

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