Campus Turnaround and Long-Term Transformation
The Corpus Christi Independent School District (ISD), located on the Gulf Coast of Texas, first began their partnership with engage2learn (e2L) in 2011, when the district received a Magnet School Assistance Program (MSAP) grant to transform two existing campuses into innovative magnet schools.
Leveraging the renowned Buerk Method, eGrowe Coaching Model, and eSuite – e2L’s smart professional learning platform – e2L was able to provide thorough implementation support, leading to initiative results that far exceeded expectations:
- Attendance increased from 93.1% to 96.8% at the new magnet school campuses;
- Discipline referrals decreased from 17.5% to 7.8% at the new magnet school campuses;
- Standardized test scores increased by 6% - 8% for all subjects with an astounding 20%+ gain for students with special needs in just one year; and
- The former culture of bullying & cliques was replaced by one of learning and camaraderie, according to student feedback.
In 2014, the district was awarded Texas’s two largest Title I Priority Schools (TTIPS) grants to address and improve low-performing schools. Thrilled with e2L’s work and bolstered by the success of the magnet school transformation, Corpus Christi ISD committed to using the funding to expand the partnership to design and implement what would prove to be a successful and sustainable school transformation strategy.
Kostoryz Elementary School (2014 - 2017)
Corpus Christi ISD’s Kostoryz Elementary School was one of the lowest-performing schools in the state of Texas in 2014. Student achievement scores were below 50% across all content areas and grade levels, and discipline referrals were growing rapidly. Facing performance problems in almost all reported student groups — including Hispanic, Black, White, Special Education, Economically Disadvantaged, and ELL — the school was labeled “Improvement Required.”
Additionally, school staff across the board reported a discouraging and frustrating school culture. As a result, Kostoryz struggled with teacher satisfaction and attrition, having lost a devastating 70% of its teachers the year before expanding its partnership with e2L.
With these challenges in one hand and a $5.7 million grant for transformation in the other, Kostoryz and e2L entered into a three-year improvement plan that leveraged e2L’s proven educator growth processes and integrated edtech platform, eSuite. This investment in the strategic support of all teachers was ultimately an investment in the success of all students as well.
The Strategic Solution
Through evidence-based coaching on e2L’s research-backed Life Ready Best Practices, the improvement plan focused on making a fundamental culture shift through three phases:
- Year One: Designing a collaborative vision for learning.
- Year Two: Defining clear methods for making their vision a reality.
- Year Three: Establishing supportive and sustainable systems.
Teachers, staff, and coaches spent the first year with e2L laying the foundation for students to work towards content and skills mastery, honing problem solving, critical thinking, and collaboration skills. e2L facilitated evidence-based coaching and captured professional growth data using eSuite, giving district and campus leaders key insights into the impact of e2L support on learner achievement. After just one year, students were growing academically, exuding curiosity and creativity, and embracing a “no fear” mindset.
Heading into the second year, teacher retention soared to 94%.
With support and encouragement from their coaches, teachers felt confident implementing e2L methods, tools, and lesson design skills in their classrooms. Through ongoing, job-embedded coaching focused on best instructional practices, Kostoryz teachers were equipped to meet students at any level of mastery with individualized growth plans. The newly invigorated teaching staff was quickly embracing a growth mindset and aiming for an aggressive goal of wide-scale improved student achievement.
The final year of the Kostoryz partnership was dedicated to firmly establishing the sustainable systems that would promote continued teacher and student growth. Teachers and staff began scheduling and facilitating weekly collaborative instructional design time, turning the desired high-performance culture into a thriving reality.
Today, Kostoryz is ranked in the 60th percentile of all Texas elementary schools, an incredible turnaround from 2014 when the campus was ranked in the bottom 3%.
Therein lies the true success of the partnership.
Through e2L’s evidence-based coaching and intentional strategy, Kostoryz was able to build a positive, self-sustaining culture while dramatically improving student achievement. Continuing on the course they charted back in 2014 Kostoryz teachers and staff maintain the best practices that they learned from e2L and have the climbing student achievement scores to prove it.