Creekside Forest Elementary (2023)

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

Creekside Forest Elementary’s journey to becoming a model Professional Learning Community began with the arrival of a new campus leader in August 2018.  Following her lead, the campus realigned the previous practice of a weekly “Focus Hour,” data talk centered on teachers - to a more student driven weekly team collaborative based on student learning and centered around the 4 PLC questions. At first, our staff was reluctant to change but as they began to see the benefits of the collaborative process, a shift in thinking ensued.  By the Spring of 2019, teachers requested more time to collaborate. It was apparent that our master schedule would need to be revamped to accommodate the PLC process.  Administration, in conjunction with a group of teacher leaders,  rewrote the master schedule to include a rotating block of time at the start of each day for collaboration. This ultimately created an extra 75 minutes a week, in addition to the 275 minutes of allotted planning time, to allow teachers to unpack TEKS, plan and share ideas for high quality instruction, adjust instruction based on student needs, work together to analyze current data, and create data driven flexible groups. 

As our journey through the PLC process evolved, teachers took a greater interest and began to trust the process. Several teachers requested to attend the PLC At Work Institute in San Antonio in the summer of 2019. Our campus leadership  made it happen as it was a priority on our campus.   At the event they gained a new understanding of the work of a professional learning community and returned to campus in the fall ready to share their experience with others and enhance the great work of ensuring high levels of learning for ALL students and supporting a culture where all meant ALL.. 

A take away recognized from the conference was that our grade level teams were collaborating effectively, but in isolation from other grade level teams.  In order to increase teacher efficacy, a cross curricular team of all grade levels was needed to truly build a culture of collaboration within the building. As a result our Guiding Coalition was formed in the summer of 2020. The Guiding Coalition  continually focuses on the next steps in curriculum, instruction, and overall culture within our school, with evidence of student learning as our guide. 

One of the first achievements of our Guiding Coalition was refining our mission and vision, and establishing a list of core values that serve as a collective commitment to excellence amongst our staff. We now use these in the hiring process to ensure candidates understand our beliefs and are willing to be committed to our learning community ensuring success of ALL students.

The Guiding Coalition has been influential in helping to determine our campus improvement goals and maintain honest, focused conversations centered around student growth. In 2020-2021 the Guiding Coalition determined that given the number of GT and high performing students we serve, a focus on question 4 was crucial, which became a whole campus focus and campus improvement goal.

In the 2022 school year, writing SMART goals became  part of our process, and under the guidance of the coalition developed into another campus wide goal to ensure mutual accountability within our campus community. Seeing the growth in achievement using SMART goals led to the 2022-2023 campus improvement goal of student driven individualized goal tracking. 

In an effort to facilitate a culture of continuous improvement on our campus we hold consistent “Kid Talks,” seek, plan and implement relevant campus professional development, meet vertically to align on essential skills, and most importantly we dig into the WHY. Kid Talks involve all stakeholders-teachers, our counselor, our diagnostician and administration.  All campus professional development aligns with the needs to enhance the work of our professional learning community.  For example, teachers learned and implemented the Icons of Depth and Complexity to support Question 4 of extending learning for students. Our campus maximizes four district days embedded throughout the year to collaborate within our grade level teams and align essential skills across all grade levels in the four content areas.  The work we do  always comes back to our WHY which is continuous campus improvement for students, staff, relationships, and academic growth.

To date 66% of our grade level teachers have attended the  PLC at Work Institute.  This includes 75% of the teachers on 4 out of 5 grade level teams and all members of the Guiding Coalition.  In addition to these teachers, both administrators and 40% of our specialist team have attended the conference as well. We plan to continue to educate our staff as funding provides opportunities until we have all been able to attend.  During and following each opportunity to attend the conference, we debrief and define the next steps in our process.


1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.

Teachers at Creekside Forest Elementary instill high levels of learning for all students. We work as a professional learning community by meeting with our teams daily, weekly, and quarterly to make pacing calendars for our students. Our master schedule includes a collaborative time for all teams to talk about kids and their progress. We identify essential standards and break them down using a Learning Design Template and backward design to ensure the success of our students. The LDTs focus on the four questions of the PLC process.  

These four questions drive our purposeful collaborative conversation to provide the same level of high quality instruction in every classroom.  Teachers have moved from compliance to a commitment  for all students to master essential standards by providing multiple opportunities to show mastery through progress monitoring. Every team in all subjects develop common formative assessments and assign common major grades.   Based on our CFA data, we flexibly group students for targeted small group instruction. These groups are fluid and change based on students’ learning outcomes and needs.  Student performance is monitored through the use of data trackers for grades K-5.

We hold “Kid Talk” meetings frequently throughout the school year to monitor students needing additional support. These meetings include teachers, specialists, administrators, and the campus diagnostician. This committee of professionals work together to provide a plan that includes additional targeted support for these students.


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

Creekside Forest Elementary has several systems in place to ensure additional support and learning time through intervention and extension. We serve all students at their level, as determined by assessments. Our master schedule has protected time set aside twice per day in each grade level. Students are flexibly grouped to provide targeted and meaningful instruction. All available staff are utilized to achieve this level of service and support of learners. 

Everyday on our campus teachers provide rigorous and  differentiated instruction of the TEKS. Grade level teams collaborate weekly outside of regular teacher conference times. This allows teachers time to focus on creating flexible groups that reflect on student needs, as well as determine levels of mastery based on common formative assessment data that guide instruction and determine  needs for extension. Specialists, interventionists, and administrators work with teachers to analyze a variety of data and determine necessary and appropriate steps for students.  

Systematic intervention is delivered through the RTI process during the time designated in the master schedule. Tier 3 instruction is provided by our full time campus interventionists. In the past, our specialists also provided Tier 2 instruction; however throughout the collaborative process a shift in how we view Tier 2 instruction has taken place. As teachers have gained a deeper understanding of continuous assessment and monitoring of student achievement, they have taken ownership of this level of small group instruction within their classroom. Teachers and specialists work together to monitor students through the RTI process, setting individualized student goals for struggling learners in Frontline (our venue for collecting information and data) and consistently monitoring progress  to ensure student  success.  

Keeping in mind the work that we are doing through collaboration to meet the needs of all students, we also focus on enriching the students that do not need intervention, but are not yet at mastery level. This year we have shifted our goal setting to a more student centered tracking system. All students have personalized academic goals to track, and during our flexible grouping time (two-30 minute blocks of time) they are motivated and focused on their own success by participating in independent TEKS based activities, specifically designed by the teacher, to help them reach their goal. This could look different for every student in every classroom at any given time but could include targeted lessons within universal screeners, choice boards, problem based learning, or depth and complexity icon tasks. 

Creekside Forest Elementary has a highly diverse population of international, gifted, and high achieving learners resulting in emphasis on question 4 as  a  strong focus on our campus. Every teacher has been trained in Depth and Complexity and utilizes the icons in their classroom to enrich and extend learning. During our intervention and extension time students who have shown mastery of a specific TEKS are extended in a variety of ways across campus. High achieving students work through hands-on STEM challenges and activities in our “Lighthouse Lab,” teachers and staff utilize our STEAM lab to extend learners using technology - such as robots. When students do not leave the room, they participate in personalized extension activities designed by the teacher, or work on their specific needs - strategically, using technology programs.


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

At Creekside Forest Elementary our mission is to continuously strive for excellence by providing a caring and innovative environment that celebrates diversity while inspiring life long learners and leaders. For us, this means we have a common commitment to creating outcomes for our students greater than what we could achieve in isolation.  Because of our high performing student population, the book, When They Already Know It is often used in the planning process of our PLC.  

At the beginning of each year teams work together to establish norms and collective commitments. These commitments are the foundation of our high performing and collaborative teams. Teams allow themselves time to get to know one another both personally and professionally. We have found that following our handbook, Learn By Doing, allows our teams to invest in this time together, and they are more aligned, engaged, and productive.

Our collaborative community is made up of people with expertise in many different areas. Our team includes classroom teachers, administrators, reading specialist, math specialist, Gifted and Talented, ESL, and our academic specialist. Each team meets every 6 days to unpack the state standards using a staff-created Learning Design Template. We review the district scope and sequence and create common formative assessments. We analyze these assessments and use them to guide our instruction and flexible grouping. Using this data, we create targeted lessons, prescriptive interventions, and meaningful extensions. Sometimes this leads to additional professional development, resources purchased, and co-teaching. Teachers are provided with the opportunity to observe one another to improve the ability to teach concepts to reach the needs of every student.  Our teachers are stakeholders in the collaborative process - helping to design district curriculum, as well as serve as presenters at district wide PD days. We use vertical alignment to understand what our students get before us and after us to make sure we are giving our kids what they need.  

Some of the teams on our campus who help support student achievement indirectly are our Instructional Leadership team which consists of our five specialists and four administrators.  This team meets weekly to view and discuss data, school academic successes and concerns.  We have a team lead committee that consists of one person per team on campus who come together to make decisions so that equality is fluent through the building.  Our Guiding Coalition meets once a month to collaborate on the needs of our students as a whole, they work to gain an understanding of where we are and where we would like to go in the future.  Our Guiding Coalition completed a book study of Starting a Movement, in 2019 where they created the format of our meetings and shared with our teachers how to create a culture in our professional learning community.  Our principal meets once a month with a group of students of all grade levels to assess the overall climate of our student culture where they offer suggestions of things that they think could better our school.  As fiscal needs arise,we are fortunate to have a very active PTO that supports our school at any opportunity.

Achievement Data Files

Additional Achievement Data

Our school included the Star Renaissance Middle of the Year data for Third through 5th grade Reading and Math in 2019-2020 because of the COVID shut down of schools. The data is formatted in percentages of On or Above Level, On Watch, Intervention, and Urgent Intervention.  We do not have this data with the same demographics as we monitor STAAR, so we identified it with the performance levels that the test provides.

Current Awards:

2019 Superintendent’s Shining Star Recipient 

2020 Top Houston Open Enrollment School

2021 Top 15 Houston Elementary Schools According to Children at Risk  #2

2022 Top 15 Houston Elementary Schools According to Children at Risk  #8

2022 Great Expectations  Model School

2022 - District Principal of the Year

2022 US NEWS Top 10 Schools in Texas #10 out of 102,448 schools (only public school not identified as a GT school)

2022 #2 in the state on the Niche School Ranking 

2022 9th of 4,581 schools on School Digger

2022 Public School Review: Overall testing Ranking in the top 1% of the state

Ratings and Distinctions:

2017-2018 Accountability Rating - Met Standard

Distinctions Given:  Academic Achievement in Language Arts/Reading

Academic Achievement in Math

Academic Achievement in Science

Top 25% Comparative Academic Growth  #1

Top 25% Closing the Gap  #8

Post Secondary Readiness


2018-2019  Accountability Rating - Met Standard

Distinctions Given:  Academic Achievement in Language Arts/Reading

Academic Achievement in Math

Academic Achievement in Science

Top 25% Closing the Gap  #14

Post Secondary Readiness


2019-2020 Accountability Rating - A

Distinctions Given:  Academic Achievement in Language Arts/Reading

Academic Achievement in Math

Academic Achievement in Science

Top 25% Closing the Gap  #8

Post Secondary Readiness


2020-2021 Accountability Rating - A


2021-2022 Accountability Rating - Met Standard

Distinctions Given:  Academic Achievement in Language Arts/Reading

Academic Achievement in Math

Academic Achievement in Science

Top 25% Comparative Academic Growth  #3

Top 25% Closing the Gap  #5

Post Secondary Readiness


Grant Rewards:  Tomball Foundation Award 

2021 - $4613.80 Be and Influencer 

2021 - $1016  Apple Pens

2022 - $4382.00   Be a Pollinator



2016 - 1st Place Overall

1st Robot Game

1st in Gracious Professionalism

2017 - 1st Overall

1st in Mechanical Design

1st in Project

Inspiration Award

2018 - 1st Overall 

1st in Project

2019 - 1st Overall 

1st Core Values

1st Robot Game

2021 - 1st Overall

1st in Robot Performance

2022 - 1st Overall

1st Core Values

1st in Project



2016 - 2017 - 1st Place in Project Outreach,High Instant challenge, Da Vinci Award, 6th place at State, 11th place at Global Competition

2017 - 2018 - 2nd in Project Outreach, 4th in Fine Arts

2018 - 2019 - 2nd in Project Outreach, 3rd in Fine Arts

2019 - 2020 - 1st in Science, 3rd in Project Outreach

2021 - 2022 - 1st in Science, 2nd in Project Outreach, 2 teams competed at State and were invited to Compete at the Global Competition

2022 - 2023 - 3rd in Engineering



2016 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes

2017 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes

2018 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes

2019 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes

2020 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes

2021 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes

2022 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes

2023 - 1st Place Elementary Sweepstakes



2019 - 1st and 3rd Overall

2021 - 1st and 3rd Overall 

2022 - 2nd Overall 

2023 - 3rd Overall and 4 of 6 Honorable Mentions



2016 - 2nd Place at District

2018 - 4th Place at District

2019 - 1st Place at District

2021 - 1st Place at District

2022 - 5th Place at District



2018 - District Overall Highest Scoring Team

2019 - District Overall Highest Scoring Team

2021 - District Overall Highest Scoring Team

2022 - District Overall Highest Scoring Team

2022 - CFES student won the Klein ISD Overall Champion

2022 - CFES student won the Magnolia ISD Overall Champion