From Vision to Reality: How to Recognize Desired Behaviors to Reinforce Fidelity of Implementation

Local Vision for Learning

Iraan-Sheffield ISD first partnered with engage2learn (e2L) in the Fall of 2018 through TEA’s Math Innovation Zone (MIZ) grant.  During the Spring of 2019, e2L facilitated a design team comprised of central office administration, campus administrators, instructional coaches, community members, school board members, teachers, and students from Iraan-Sheffield in designing their local vision for learning. The design team created their local vision for learning or Call to Action as we like to say at e2L.

Call to Action:  Iraan-Sheffield ISD students take ownership for excellence in acquiring the necessary knowledge, skills, and attitudes to be productive, independent citizens responsible for their futures.

At e2L, we don’t just stop with a local vision for learning.  We then facilitate the design team in making the vision actionable through the creation of a Learning Innovation Framework. 

Learning Innovation Framework

In order to achieve the Iraan-Sheffield local vision for learning, a roadmap of behaviors is required. Clearly defining the desires of the entire local community for the learner experience in Iraan-Sheffield and aligning the behaviors of both learner and facilitator are critical components in achieving the desired experience.  Therefore, the design team created a learner profile and utilized that profile to develop a learning framework.  The development of the framework allowed the district to take all of its initiatives, including blended learning, and wrap it into one thing: The Iraan-Sheffield Brave Experience Framework.  

The Iraan-Sheffield Brave Experience Framework is based on the e2L Life Ready Best Practices. The design team created educator and learner protocols aligned to the best practices and blended learning approach, which provide clarity for both the teacher and learner on blended learning in support of mathematics and align the initiatives into one thing. As a result, MIZ campuses of Iraan Elementary School and Iraan Junior High School have a clear roadmap to ensure students are excelling in math through the implementation of a clearly defined blended learning approach. When the Iraan-Sheffield Brave Experience blended learning framework is implemented with fidelity, the academic achievement the district and campuses will see is the result of both achievement and innovation.   

The Iraan-Sheffield ISD Brave Experience Framework is built on four areas of focus: engage, initiate, adapt, and assess and reflect. The culmination of these four areas creates a blended learning environment that supports learners to be independent thinkers, have confidence, be problem solvers, be active collaborators, show initiative, manage time, exhibit positive work ethic, increase communication skills, to adapt, and to persevere. When these four areas are implemented in the classroom, the Iraan-Sheffield ISD vision for learning will be realized.

Responsible Rollout: Implementation through Training and Coaching

Once the framework was designed, Iraan-Sheffield ISD created a Responsible Rollout plan that included training and coaching for all math teachers over a 3-year period.  In the Summer of 2019, Iraan-Sheffield trained all of their PK, 3rd, and 6th-grade math teachers in designing units aligned to the Brave Experience Framework. In September, the Iraan-Sheffield instructional coaches attended the Coaches Innovation Academy to gain a deep understanding of how to support teachers in implementing the Brave Experience Framework.  Throughout the year, an e2L coach and the Iraan-Sheffield instructional coaches will provide at least five personalized learning coaching sessions to the PK, 3rd, and 6th-grade math teachers. These coaching sessions will center around coaching teachers on how to implement the e2L Life Ready Best Practices aligned to the Iraan-Sheffield Brave Experience Framework. During the 2020-2021 school year, the expectation is for the K, 4th, and 7th-grade teachers to implement the framework and finally, in the 2021-2022 school year, the 1st, 2nd, 5th, and 8th-grade teachers will be expected to implement the framework.  Thus, completing the responsible rollout over a 3-year period. 

Recognition Systems

In order to encourage teachers as they implemented the Brave Experience, Iraan-Sheffield leaders knew they wanted to recognize those teachers who were trying to implement the e2L Life Ready Best Practices aligned to the Brave Experience.  However, they knew they needed recognition systems in place in order to recognize the desired behaviors they were seeking through the implementation. Therefore, the instructional coaches came together and developed a multi-layer recognition system based on metrics.  The system includes 1) micro-credential badging, 2) framework sticker badges, 3) bright spots in newsletters, and 4) monthly awards ceremony.

  1. During coaching conversations, teachers bring back evidence of how they have implemented the e2L Life Ready Best Practices and once they meet expectations for implementing the best practice, they will receive electronic badges for each best practice. The badges earned are posted on the Iraan-Sheffield staff directory page of the district website. See more on earning badges through the e2L Blog, Badges? I Want Some Stinking Badges
  2. During classroom visits, the principal or instructional coach has the opportunity to award a culture tenets badge for a teacher exhibiting the cultural tenets.
  3. At least one teacher is recognized each month in The Brave Experience Newsletter as a bright spot for implementing the framework.
  4. The bright spot teachers are recognized at a monthly awards ceremony.

Conclusion

Many times, in education, we spend a lot of time organizing a design team to create a vision but don’t necessarily put in the systems to support the vision.  If you need practical steps for creating your vision and making it a reality, then look at the steps that Iraan-Sheffield ISD took. 

  1. Design your vision for learning. For more information, check out the e2L Blog, Designing a Community Inspired Vision for Every Learner
  2. Create a roadmap of learner and facilitator behaviors that clearly define the learning experience. 
  3. Determine a Responsible Rollout Plan.  For more information, check out the e2L Blog, Responsible District Rollout.
  4. Support teachers in implementing the learner experience through training and coaching. For more information, check out the e2L Blog, Coaching Helps you Grow for your Students.

Reinforce the desired behaviors through recognition systems. If you need ideas for recognition systems, check out the e2L blog, Stop (Unintentionally) Rewarding Toxic Behaviors and Measure What Matters Most.


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