Direct Access to Achievement | A
n integrated approach on how to use data to inform instruction 

Data Retreat comes to La Grande

About 50 Eastern Oregon educators attended a Data Retreat on Saturday, April 26, hosted by the La Grande School District. Four trainers from the Direct Access to Achievement Project guided the teams of teachers and administrators through the data team process, and in using their own formative assessment data to make a plan for instruction. Participants came from the La Grande and Elgin school districts. "It was an excellent day of training for our staff," says Larry Glaze, the district's superintendent. "The training helped refine and improve instructional practices and strengthen data use for improving student learning in La Grande School District." 

DATA Project adds team resources 

An intense series of trainings around the state has added to the library of resources available from Direct Access to Achievement. Recent one-day Data Retreats held at the request of districts in Salem, The Dalles, La Grande and Woodburn have resulted in new videos, updated training guides and shared data team/PLC documents. Links to three of the new videos are posted below.

Crockpots and Results Indicators (9:42)

Third-grade PLC meeting, Scott Elementary (11:43)

The Grade Alike Team process (6:50)

Year 7 report available 

Wow -- Direct Access to Achievement is celebrating its seventh year! If you are curious about the program, we invite you to read our latest
Year in Review. The document contains information about where the initiative has been, what it has accomplished in the last year, where you can find specific resources, and what's going on this year. Reports from previous years are available under the Reports menu Year in Review.

Hub sites chosen 

Several districts in Oregon have been chosen to receive additional coaching and resource support through Direct Access to Achievement to help their PLC/data teams implement the Common Core State Standards and teacher effectiveness initiatives. The plans developed by these districts/ESDs (see them HERE) complement the action plans for CCSS implementation developed by the six Oregon DATA Project regions in the state. These plans are posted online HERE.

Data Retreats draw record crowds 

The last of a series of three Data Retreats sponsored by ODE's Direct Access to Achievement took place Oct. 28-29 in Coos Bay. The two-day sessions presented the concepts and tools administrators and teachers need to create and support highly effective PLCs/data teams. Workshop costs were covered by Direct Access to Achievement, which is supported by a federal Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS) grant. Trainers were practicing professionals from Oregon school districts, large and small, across the state. All three retreats filled up immediately, with 100-170 educators attending at each site. The first two Data Retreats were in Eugene and Portland. To download retreat materials, visit this page.

2013-2014 webinar schedule set

We would like to invite you to participate in Direct Access to Achievement's annual webinar series -- three powerful sessions that you won't want to miss. The first webinar, "Initiative Integration: Getting the Most Out of CCSS and Educator Effectiveness," took place Oct. 30. Details on the webinars are below. 

  • Oct. 30, 3:30-4:30 Initiative Integration: Getting the Most Out of CCSS and Educator Effectiveness
  • Feb. 26, 3:30-4:30 Making it Stick: Going from Training to Implementation Practice
  • April 23, 3:30-4:30 What Difference Is this Making? Evaluating Program Effectiveness and Fidelity of Implementation
  • Click HERE for more information and resources. 

Summer Assessment Institute draws 500

About 500 educators from across Oregon came together recently to share success stories, learn from peers, plan with school teams, and hear from national experts in the field of assessment and student learning. The annual ODE/COSA Summer Assessment Institute, on Aug. 1-2, featured 52 workshops and keynote addresses by national leaders, including national literacy consultant Mary Ehrenworth, the director of math for Smarter Balanced, Shelbi Cole, and well-known author Timothy Kanold.

Classroom assessment training developed

More than 100 teachers from throughout Oregon have completed a training in classroom assessment through the Direct Access to Achievement Project. The Embedded Formative Classroom Assessment training was developed by project volunteers in response to requests from the field for strategies on how to embed engaging formative assessment in regular classroom instruction. Trainers are Carol Middleton and Linda Vanderford of Clackamas ESD. Comments from participants included these: “Practical and timely. I can use in my classroom this week,” and “It was valuable to learn how to break down the standard and focus on small aspects of the standard.” 

EDUCAUSE features Oregon DATA Project

The Oregon DATA Project was recently featured in a lengthy article by EDUCAUSE Online. The best way to read the interactive article is online, by clicking HERE.  You may also download a hard copy by clicking on the attachment link below. 

National magazines feature Oregon DATA Project 

The Direct Access to Achievement Project has been featured in several national publications recently. An article in Governing magazine, "States Lead Effort to Utilize Data in Education," mentions Oregon as a state taking "great strides" in the push toward harnessing data to improve instruction and policy. Read the entire article HERE. In Converge, a national educational technology magazine, writer Tanya Roscorla explores the project in depth, talking to state officials as well as participants in the DATA Project at the ESD and district level. Click here to read the article.

Webinar features Oregon districts

A recording is now available of a national webinar featuring  the Oregon DATA Project and two participating districts, Redmond and Oregon City, where creating a culture for data use is taking hold. The webinar was held as part of a series by the School Turnaround Learning Community on "Using Data for Effective Turnaround."

Oregon contributes to SLDS resources

The Oregon Department of Education has had several opportunities lately to contribute to the resources available to states receiving Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS) grants from the Institute of Education Sciences.

The "Best Practices Brief for Stakeholder Communications" offers communication tips for states as they plan, develop and implement longitudinal data systems. ODE staff contributed suggestions and feedback, and several of Oregon’s best practices are mentioned in the publication and available here.

Oregon is one of seven states participating in the pilot phase of the national Public Domain Clearinghouse, an online resource for states developing longitudinal data systems. Oregon contributed one of eight tools used in the rollout of the site–an architecture map of the Oregon DATA Project website.

Teachers tackle Common Core State Standards

Nearly 200 teachers around Oregon rolled up their sleeves recently to better understand the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in Writing. The Strand 4 training from Direct Access to Achievement, “Essential Skills in Writing: Impact on Teaching and Learning,” took place May 17-18. A third day, May 19, was reserved for school teams to polish up their implementation plan.

Participants are using the CCSS to look at standards that are already in place, as well as changes to standards that will affect their instruction. They will use this information to critically assess their approach to the essential skill of writing. Participants created one of two things: a curriculum map for at least one grade level, or a K-12 district assessment calendar.

The training was broadcast from Clackamas ESD, which hosted 55 participants, to seven ESDs and about 120 participants around the state. Malheur ESD in Ontario had more than 50 people attending, with about a dozen each at Douglas, Lane, Lake County, Harney County, High Desert and Umatilla Morrow ESDs.

The Oregon DATA Project training is one of the resources, services and support that ODE is providing to the field on the Common Core State Standards.

Lights, camera, action! DATA Project debuts video

The Direct Access to Achievement (DATA) Project has just released a short informational video that captures the incredible partnerships created throughout the education enterprise, the amazing K-12 network built for staff and the significant impact this work is having on student learning. Please take 10 minutes--actually 9:41--to view the video. 

Oregon DATA Project in the news

The Oregon Direct Access to Achievement Project has earned mention in a statewide teachers' magazine, a national blog, and a regional newspaper.

The June 2010 issue of Today's OEA magazine devotes a four-page spread to the project. "Data driven: A Statewide Grant Turns Test Scores into Teaching Strategies" takes a look at project activities––and their results--around the state.

In an entry titled "Data, Data Everywhere: But Are There Brains to Think?," a blog focusing on stimulus issues highlights the DATA Project. The writers discuss the importance of training people to use data, then say: "Among the pioneering states is Oregon, which is training teachers and principals on data use and has a comprehensive website that's been a good model." Read the entire blog entry HERE.

The good work being done in the Grant School District in eastern Oregon is featured in an article in the Blue Mountain Eagle. "The WRITE stuff: Local teachers use data to help students hone their skills" talks about the great strides student at Humboldt Elementary have made in achievement, thanks to teacher Susie Garrison and her work with the Oregon DATA Project. Download the story HERE.