Roark Early Education Center (2023)
- Number of Students: 291
- Percent Eligible for Free and Reduced Lunch: 87.29%
- Percent of Limited English Proficient: 29.55%
- Percent of Special Education: 19.93%
- White: 33.34%
- Black: 10.65%
- Hispanic: 51.2%
- Asian: 1.37%
- Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander: 0%
- American Indian or Alaska Native: 0.69%
- Multiracial: 2.75%
- Other: 0%
Our PLC journey as the new stand-alone Roark Early Education Center, began in July 2018 when our school district, Willis ISD, decided to remove all of the EE/PreK students off, the then, five elementary school campuses in the district. All of the EE/PreK teachers were excited because now they would be able to collaborate and create a viable curriculum for Prekindergarten students. A few of the teachers and the administrator had attended Solution Tree PLC at Work conferences and summits and used their expertise to create a collaborative team focused on early learning. With the passing of Texas House Bill 3, which focuses on learning and student outcomes, we wanted to create a school with a focus on the learning standards from the Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines. We began unwrapping the guidelines to create essential standards that we wanted our prekindergarten students to meet/master and set goals to attain. After deciding on the most important essentials, we met with the district elementary school Kindergarten teachers and shared our essentials and obtained input from them on what they wanted students to know and be able to do when they entered Kindergarten. We also used the Early Childhood Vertical Alignment documents to assist us in creating our essential standards. Later, in our PLC processes, we did a yearly book study of the the book, "What About Us? The PLC at Work Process for Grades PreK-2 Teams," to help guide us in focusing on the four critical questions of a PLC. We had worked extensively on the question of what we want our students to learn, so now our focus was on how do we know students have learned. We created a folder/binder of our esential standards that goes home with every student daily. This gives the parents a glimpse of what we want students to learn in PreK, gives the students ownership of their own learning by allowing them to set goals, and is an effective way for teachers to collect data and informally assess students daily.
The following year we created a guiding coalition team which consisted of the principal and teacher leaders who were able to explain our PLC journey and coach our processes. As a PLC, we defined why we exist and what our school must become to accomplish our purpose by redevleoping our mission and vision statements more inline with our campus focus as a PLC. We set collective committments and agreed to be more open and vulnerable with one another and share data and the most effective leanring strategies. Everyone really embraced that the students were OUR students and not MY students, which allowed the Roark teachers to collaborate more effectively and truly become a PLC.
After two years as a PLC, we began to understand the process enough to tighten up our norms, agendas and data protocols. As a CT we created SMART goals based off previous years data. We were a half day PreK and our waiver to become a full day PreK was expiring soon, so we implemented full day PreK for only two of our classess. We saw an extreme amount of growth in our full day classes compared to the half day classes, so we asked the district administrators if we could go ahead and have all full day classes a year earlier than anticipated. They agreed and our data has been GLOWING every since. Our CT meets twice weekly to look at data, develop and schedule CFAs and answer the 4 Essential Questions of a PLC. We began with 12 week common summative assessments, which allowed us to track BOY, MOY and EOY student learning growth. We also created a 12 week report card for parents. The following year we decided we wanted to be more aligned with the school district's grading periods, so we created a 9 week report card and did our CSAs at the end of every nine weeks. The teachers put their data in our data protocol chart in the CT Google Drive. The data is updated at the end of every nine weeks. The guiding coalition team meets bimonthly and discusses data. Based on these discussions, we made a plan for students that needed continued intervention and the effectiveness of the RtI process. This school year 2022-2023, we were more intentional with sharing learning strategies to help move more students forward and documented those students who were academic and behavior Tier 2 and Tier 3, so we would have have valid data for making SPED referrals, BIPs and a starting place for our Kindergarten teachers.
Along our PLC journey, we evaluate our process using our Willis ISD Stategy Implementation Guide 3.0 and shift as needed. We added weekly CT meetings for our bilingual and special education teachers. We continue to see progress and push towards ALL of our students achieving at HIGH levels socially, emotionally and academically.
Little learners building BRIGHT futures
Roark Early Education Center will set the foundation of learning by developing social/emotional and academic skills for ALL learners.
- Be Committed
- Be Exceptional
- Be Flexible
- Be Compassionate
- Be All In
1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.
Collaborative teams meet twice a week. One planning meeting and one collaborative team meeting where teams are expected to use the four PLC questions to drive their discussion. Our campus uses Scholastic PreK On My Way as their curriculum with the following planning documents to ensure a viable curriculum is being taught and that students' progress is being monitored.
- Identify PreK Essential Standards
- Unit Planning Document-Identify learning targets
- Data Spreadsheet-Teachers enter student data each 9 weeks to discuss in their collaborative team meeting.
- What Does the Data Say-This document is used after nine week formal assessments to guide CT conversations.
We have established SMART goals based on our essential standards, that we review at the beginning of each year and at the end of each 9 week formal data CT meeting for continued relevance. We progress monitor these SMART goals four times a year. Each classroom teacher has a data binder, with a section for each student. Students set goals with their teachers, track their own progress, and reflect on their achievements.
We reserve time for common planning and data meetings twice weekly on Wednesday mornings for one hour and Thursdays during our 45 minute conference period.
2. Creating systems of intervention to provide students with additional time and support for learning.
Our master schedule includes a 45 minute to an hour "body break," which we gives our students time to rest their bodies and/or nap. Beginning in February, we use this time to be intentional on working with our Tier 2 and Tier 3 students on the essentials they have not yet met or mastered. During this time, we also share students within our same pods when necessary.
Our Early Childhood/PreK program is an RTI program at heart since At Risk and English Learners are two of the main ways students qualify to attend. Throughout the year, teachers plan instruction for their chosen Essential Standards, provide learning opportunities for students to be able to show if they master particular skills, and then use data to determine any necessary reteaching. In the PreK instructional minutes, the daily schedule includes 30-45 minutes of RTI/Extension time built within center time where the teacher is a center rotation to work with individual students and small groups of students. A valuable and developmentally appropriate focus of our PreK program is repetition and continuous connections with Essential Standards that are provided daily. Teachers embed these skills in whole group instruction, circle time, and/or calendar time, which allows for additional exposure and spirals concepts throughout the school year. Each content area also includes small group instruction during centers that encompasses Tier 2 interventions. At the young age of our students, multiple transitions are also challenging. However, we have developed a process that enables teachers to dig into their data, and collaborate together to meet the needs of their students who haven't learned yet, who are meeting the standards, and students who have mastered the essential standards.
During data CT time, we complete and/or review our data analysis protocol. Based on our data, we brainstorm different types of lessons and strategies we can implement for the whole class. A lot of our lessons can be individualized based on student achievement level. After our collaborative team meetings, teachers implement shared lessons and strategies. After each nine weeks, we come together at data team meetings and discuss how the interventions affected our student performance data and document and/or change our goals.
Another key component of our effective collaborative team is our lesson plan template, in which we created in our committment to be more intentional and focused on our teaching strategies, resources and alignment of our curriculum.
3. Building teacher capacity to work as members of high performing collaborative teams that focus efforts on improved learning for all students.
We have been successful at building teacher capacity by having all of our guiding coalition team members trained at the PLC Summit or district Solution Tree trainings. We have also registered and reserved money in our budget for more teachers and a new administrator to receive training so that the knowledge is spread among all stakeholders of our collaborative team. Teachers who attend bring back what they have learned to present to teachers during district staff development days throughout the school year. We also did a year long book study of "What About Us?," which as been a valuable resource in the success of our CT meetings for unwrapping the essential standards, discussing data, monitoring progress and planning instruction.
Our district IT&L department and campus principals also created a Strategy Implementation Guide that has been very useful in helping us keep check of where we are as a PLC. We started off being stuck at proficient, but as we have grown with resources we have gotten from PLC conferences/trainings, books "Learning By Doing" and "What About Us?," we are growing kids and feel very comfortable saying we have reached "Gold Standard" in most areas of our work as a CT.
Our collaborative team is able to focus their efforts on the planning phase of instruction by having crucial conversations around the four essential questions. During Guiding Coalition meetings, team leaders and campus leaders engage in data conversations with opportunities for questions and/or suggestions from team members. By analyzing individual student data using our individual student binders of essential PreK skills and discussing each students' needs and tracking their progress, this gives us a visual representation of where our focus is needed. As a CT, teachers discuss their class data and make specific plans for students in need of intervention and extension.
Achievement Data Files
Additional Achievement Data
Our student enrollment is made up of ECSE, EC 3 and PreK 4 students. As required by the state, we also assess our PreK students using the CLI CIRCLE Progress Monitoring Assessment at the BOY and EOY. We use this data at the end of the year to measure percentile growth.
We were included in the process of designing our state-of-the-art PreK Center and won the:
Summit Award for Design Excellence at the A4LE(Association for Learning Environments) Southern Region Conference
2021-2022 Willis ISD Administrator of the Year- Calandra Lewis