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Getting Excited about Data


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Table of Contents

Foreword - Tony Wagner Preface What This Book Is Not What This Book Is How This Book Is Organized Acknowledgments About the Author 1. Using Data for Alignment and Achievement Alignment Between Mission and the School Portfolio Alignment Between Mission, Portfolio and Concerns Alignment Between Concerns and Priorities Alignment Among Priorities, Study, and Strategies Alignment Between Priorities, Strategies, and Evidence Alignment Betwee Strategies, Evidence, and Action Plans Consolidating Multiple and Existing Plans Using Data for Alignment and Achievement Two Schools Implement a Major Change Two A's and Three Powerful P's Making It Public On the Road Again 2. Understanding the Importance of Proof My Data Roots Data to Close the Achievement Gap Use of Data Highlighted in National Research Reports Data Work in High-Performing Schools Data - Essential, but Not Sufficient 3. Coping With the Barriers to Data Use Reasons for Reluctance to Use Data Assessing Data Readiness Responding to Concerns 4. Engaging the People Internal and External Engagement The Cultural Problem Creating the Culture of Collective Responsibility Finding Time Making It Public 5. Arousing the Passion The Motivation Continuum Swapping Stories Language, Humor, and Music Monitoring Our Mission 6. Starting With the Significant Data > Test Scores State and Federal Mandates The Blue Ribbon Approach Of Local Significance No Snapshots, Please Finding the Starting Point The Snowball Approach 7. Displaying the Data Size User-Friendly Data Displays Displaying Longitudinal Data Color Coding Proficiency The No-Numbers Approach Displaying Perceptual Data The Whole Portfolio Making It Public The Acid Test 8. Interpreting the Results Carousel Data Analysis Listening In Using the Responses Making It Public 9. Designing a Data Day Purpose Preparation District Session School-Based Activities Follow-Up Making It Public 10. Establishing Priorities Getting It Out and Narrowing It Down Wordsmithing Works The Ends or the Means Mandates and Motivation in Goal Setting 11. Drilling Down the Priority Data Planning Forward With Student-Specific Data Planning Backward With Skill-Specific Data Ramping Up the Roster Slicing the Pie Attacking Anonymity Checking Out Perceptions Making It Public - Not 12. Looking Around and Looking Within Examining Research Exploring Best Practice Probing Our Practice Capturing Our Culture 13. Clarifying District, School, and Classroom Roles Going in Circles Going With the Flow Cycling in Synch Delivering the Data Coordinating the Common 14. Planning Your Work and Working Your Plan Developing Action Plans Evidence of Implementation Evidence of Impact Reaping Unexpected Benefits Making It Public 15. Sustaining the Struggle Analyzing Implementation Integrating Programs and Practices Saying No Celebrating Spreading a Little Cheer 16. Leading with Relentless Resilience Review Relentless Resilience Reflection References Index

About the Author

Edie L. Holcomb is executive director of curriculum and instructional services for Kenosha Unified School District No. 1 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. She has experienced the challenges of improving student achievement from many perspectives: From classroom teacher to university professor From gifted education coordinator to mainstream teacher of children with multiple disabilities From school- and district-level administration to national and international consulting From small rural districts to the challenges of urban education She is highly regarded for her ability to link research and practice on issues related to instructional leadership and school and district change-including standards-based curriculum, instruction, assessment, supervision, and accountability. She has taught at all grade levels, served as a building principal and central office administrator, and assisted districts as an external facilitator for accreditation and implementation of school reform designs. As associate director of the National Center for Effective Schools, she developed a training program for site-based teams and provided technical support for implementation of school improvement efforts throughout the United States and in Canada, Guam, St. Lucia, and Hong Kong. She developed a comprehensive standards-based learning system for the staff and 47,000 students of the Seattle, Washington, city district and has supervised K-12 clusters of schools and evaluated principals. Her work received the Excellence in Staff Development Award from the Iowa Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development in 1988. In 1990, her study of the needs of beginning principals was recognized by the American Association of School Administrators with the Paul F. Salmon Award for Outstanding Education Leadership Research. She served as an elected member-at-large on the Leadership Council for ASCD International, played an active role in Washington State's School Improvement Assistance Program, and contributed to development of the new School System Improvement Resource Guide. Holcomb is the author of four previous books and numerous articles and reviews.


"It was a pleasure to read Getting Excited About Data. I found it precise and on target for enabling school personnel to effectively use their schools' data to plan improvement." -- Theodore Creighton, Executive Director
"The book is written in friendly language and is a quick read with many examples. The diagrams and sample questions throughout are very useful." -- Jill Hudson, Principal
"Holcomb's enlightening revision gives educators a useful, fun-to-read resource full of strategies, tools, and techniques for focusing on data. Presented with tales of real-life experiences, this book gives the reader a 'ready-to-use' approach that is refreshingly practical." -- Debbie McDonald, Kentucky State Director

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