Summit Street School
- Number of Students: 220
- Percent Eligible for Free and Reduced Lunch: 33%
- Percent of Limited English Proficient: 18%
- Percent of Special Education: 20%
Summit Street School began our commitment to the PLC at Work Process throughout the last four years, taking strategic and bold steps to facilitate a culture of continuous improvement in our school. Our journey started by developing our shared vision and knowledge through collective inquiry. We reaffirmed our mission, vision, and values and set our long and short-term goals. We clarified and developed a consistent focus for our school district with our EWSD Mission Statement and made our path towards a compelling future for our students through our vision. [see: ewsd-continuous-improvement-plan.pdf]
Collaborative Teams established their values and made collective commitments to each other and among the collaborative teams. This allowed teams a clear path to developing goals that were targeted with clear timelines. Each team works together on our school-wide SMART goals that support our guaranteed and viable curriculum [instructional-smart-goal-summit-street-2021-2022-1.pdf]
We established a guiding coalition led by teacher leaders and facilitated our culture by learning together, asking critical and challenging questions of each other. We have refined our team structures to create meaningful teams where the success of the group is determined by the interdependent success to achieve our common goals. Our teams make time for collaboration and seek out opportunities to build their collaborative skills. This can be seen in our systematic agenda meetings and norms. [see:first-grade-collaborative-team-meeting-sample-norms-and-agenda.pdf]
The pandemic provided us additional opportunities to reevaluate our practices and continue to refresh and refine following the PLC at Work process. In December of 2019, just before the start of the pandemic, our Kindergarten team embarked on a 15-day Challenge on letter sounds. Every teacher that interacted with kindergarteners, had a small group and daily instructed, reviewed, and monitored student progress on this essential standard. Students and teachers set daily goals and continuously monitored which students needed extra time and support. At the end of the 15 days in December, our kindergarten data was comparable to the data we usually see in May. This propelled our kindergartners for success into the time of a full shutdown in March 2020 of all schools. [see:2019-2020-kindergarten-letter-sound-data-15-day-challenge-5560.pdf]
Each year as a faculty we reaffirm our collective commitments to each other with deep group norms that drive the collective commitments and support our values. These values guide us to become the school we set out to be each fall. This trust in our teams improves our ability to use student learning to improve teachers' individual practice as well as the collective instruction at that grade level. These norms are read at each team meeting and revised throughout the year when needed. [see: collective-responsibility-team-picture.jpg]
Our collaborative teams meet two times a week as well as several times a month in longer increments. These teams are action-oriented and engage with each other and reflect in student learning as well as their own individual learning and shared learning.
It became clear in our PLC at Work process that we must continually build capacity to have the skills and knowledge to serve all of our students. During our second year of the PLC at Work process, our grade level collaborative teams developed skills to work independently and analyze the impact of the practices on student learning. We carefully analyze student information using the four critical questions of collaborative teams and use the results of our common formative assessments to assist our teams in building on teacher strengths and improving instruction.
Over the last four years, we have built opportunities to identify and acknowledge progress and celebrate in intentional ways. Our Guiding Coalition has developed a dashboard to organize and share work amongst grade-level collaborative teams, as well as to share celebrations of student learning. [see: guiding-coalition-dashboard-1.pdf]
1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.
Summit Street School first established with all teachers the essential standards that all students must know at each grade level in reading, writing, and math while considering endurance, leverage, and readiness. These essential standards were then refined by the district grade level collaborative teams to ensure all students, regardless of which teacher or school they attend, will have access to the essential information that they must know. [see: green-essential-standard-progression.pdf]
Our collaborative teams at Summit Street School developed unit plans by essential standards that included addressing pre-requisite skills, learning targets, student-friendly “I can” statements, common formative assessments, and interventions. This led to clarifying academic vocabulary that our school agreed all students would know. [See: 1st-grade-literacy-plc_rti-unit-plans.pdf]
Our guaranteed and viable curriculum is developed by collaborative teams strategizing to ensure all students have access to the same essential learning standards and that they are taught in the same scope and sequence. This linked delivery of instruction allowed us to efficiently deploy resources for intervention and extension. This guaranteed and viable curriculum has helped us remain consistent and observe all students through retirements and staff changes.
In addition, this work on student-friendly “I Can” statements have been supported by teachers working with students to identify and reflect on their learning, and in third grade, this work includes students communicating their learning to their parents through student-led conferences.
To monitor student learning on a timely basis, teams schedule and plan their short and long-term goals during the unit planning process. Each collaborative team has a special educator, English Language Learner Teacher, math and literacy interventionists, as well as classroom teachers at that grade level. There are many eyes consistently on the data with shared responsibility.
Students are well aware of the Essential Standards and Learning Targets and speak fluently about them. With the return to in-person conferences this year, our 3rd-grade collaborative team worked with students to have student-led conferences where students led their parents through their learning targets and evidence of success. Students also practice this skill of self-monitoring throughout an essential standards unit using a student learning target sheet. [see: student-conference-rubrics-2019-docx.pdf]
2. Creating systems of intervention to provide students with additional time and support for learning.
Creating a system of intervention and extension based on our essential standards was a priority for Summit Street School collaborative teams. Teacher teams developed common formative assessments and at regular intervals frequently gathered the evidence of student learning and developed intervention teams to deliver intervention for students needing additional support to learn the standard. [see: literacy-intervention-progression.pdf]
Most intervention is delivered during a dedicated intervention block called WIN (What Individuals Need) although all students that need additional time and support on grade-level standards will receive this throughout their school day regardless if they are in another intervention during WIN black. In addition, some students are offered another dose of support outside of the school day in a program called EWSD Reads which is paired with healthy snacks and afterschool care.
Our teams developed interventions within a comprehensive intervention that is timely, directed, and responsive to learner needs. These teams are grounded in delivering a guaranteed and viable curriculum that teachers agree on common pacing to support high leverage common formative assessments and response to student need with shared intervention. Students are required to be part of these interventions and teachers agree on the criteria to enter and exit these interventions. [see: 1st-grade-literacy-plc_rti-unit-plans.pdf]
Summit Street School was supported by our school district and applied the needed resources to reassign highly skilled classroom teachers to the intervention site team. Students are identified by target, by skill, and they move seamlessly in and out of interventions without the need for an academic label or plan such as 504 or IEP. Data is analyzed student by student, and target by target.
The collaborative teams continually work to make our systems better through highly skilled teachers improving their instruction and intervention as well as continually keeping the schedule responsive to student needs.
While our teams continually monitor essential standards learning targets, our collaborative teams also monitor overall program effectiveness overtime looking for continuous improvement. This can be seen in our program effectiveness charts. This gives us a wide view of the movement of our programs through time. This allows our teams opportunities to discuss our long-range goals and how to improve. [see: kindergarten-letter-id_letter-sound-fall-2020-progress-monitoring.pdf]
Our Summit Street School schoolwide schedule is developed to support high-quality instruction, as well as dedicated collaborative team meetings and effective resourcing so that all students have access to additional time and support. [see:5-day-instructional-schedule.pdf]
3. Building teacher capacity to work as members of high performing collaborative teams that focus efforts on improved learning for all students.
Building teacher capacity is a critical step for our high-quality collaborative teams to enhance their skills to improve learning for all students. Over time we worked as a faculty to increase teacher resilience and build skills for educators to work together and take collective responsibility for all learners.
After three years of developing collaborative teams, this year we had a large number of retirements and we took this opportunity to make bold moves to create the most dynamic teams possible to serve students. Teams began the year by reaffirming and learning more about taking collective responsibility to establish goals that require mutual accountability.
Teams have schoolwide established SMART goals that enhance the work of the team and increase student learning through a focus on student learning targets, “I can” statements and the analysis of student information through common formative assessment and evaluation of indicators of the strengths of our programs through summative assessments.
Our guiding coalition teacher leaders lead the collaborative teams and model the values of the school and stable and maintain consistent priorities. New hires to Summit Street School are aware of and know the expectation to participate and engage as a collaborative team. Our school district also added the addition of a Social-Emotional Learning coach to increase our ability to serve students with collaborative teams.
In addition, we have transitioned Guiding Coalition Teacher Leaders to key positions within our school to further our work and trained new teacher leaders. Our Guiding Coalition meets weekly and plans for their collaborative team meetings and shares essential resources as well as practiced new protocols to use to effectively lead their teams.
Our Guiding Coalition Dashboard allows easy access for all teachers to important shared documents and information and keeps our teacher leaders well informed of each other's work. There is a shared responsibility among teacher leaders. In August 2021, with many new teachers at Summit Street School and a continued pandemic, our guiding coalition led a day of renewal and a focus on collective responsibility at Summit Street School. Teachers learned new ways to collaboratively work together, share best practices, and continually focus on improved student learning. [see: guiding-coalition-dashboard-1.pdf]
Achievement Data Files
Additional Achievement Data
Summit Street School Achievement Data
Summit Street School students take the Smarter Balanced (SBAC) Summative Assessments based on 3rd grade Common Core State Standards. This is the Vermont State Assessment and the data shows the comparison within our school district and in comparison with other 3rd grade students in the state of Vermont. [see:summit-street-effectivenessdatatemplate.pdf]
This data shows Summit Street School's scores to rise through the pandemic and exceed both district and state averages. Summit Street School also reflects on data regularly both in collaborative teams as well as our Guiding Coalition school leadership team.
Our kindergarten literacy program sets the foundation for early building blocks for success in school. The collaborative team regularly monitors progress on letter sounds and letter identification. [see: kindergarten-letter-id_letter-sound-fall-2020-progress-monitoring--kindergarten-1.pdf]. In the 2019-2020, school year kindergarten teachers used a 15-day challenge to improve their rate of progress. [see: 2019-2020-kindergarten-letter-sound-data-15-day-challenge.pdf]. This monitoring of progress continues throughout the year, every year. [see: kindergarten-id_sound-progress-monitoring-fall-2021--set-1--1.pdf].
This cohort of students is now in 2nd grade and you can see their continued progress in the progression of their phonics and text level data. [see: 2nd-grade-sample-data-phonics.pdf, 2ndgradefandp.pdf]. The phonics data gave us the opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to essential standards. While viewing the total score, it quickly became apparent how important it was to be clear on which scores measure the essential standard.
Collaborative Teams discuss data weekly and focus on formative data to improve their instruction and make important intervention decisions for students so that all students that need additional time and support have the opportunity to do so. Our third-grade data shows remarkable progress over time including many students moving up a proficiency band. [see: 3rdgradefandpovertime-1.pdf]
Vermont PBIS School of Merit and School of Recognition