Ready, Fire, Aim: Instructional Leaders’ Evidence Use and Assessment within a Latino and Emergent Bilingual-serving School
Torres, Kathryn Elizabeth
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Accountability systems and instructional reform efforts have relied on various forms of data to improve student outcomes. Yet, it is unclear exactly how data is being used in practice, by leaders and educations within particular contexts for instructional improvement. This case study explored forms of evidence use of an instructional leadership team during collective data-focused inquiry, within an Latino and emergent bilingual-serving school. The goal of this study was to determine how available assessment tools and forms of evidence created opportunities to learn and respond to their Latino and emergent bilingual student population. This work posits that data and assessment use is a situated and collective process, embedded within state, district, school, and professional learning community contexts. Observations of instructional leadership team and professional learning community meetings, alongside interviews with educators, revealed that assessment data was primarily used for targeting students for intervention and support services. Their accountability context, available assessment tools, and emphasis on testing created many tensions that decreased opportunities for educators to make connections to the instructional core. Findings indicate forms of data and assessment used within data-focused inquiry has the potential to shape practitioner discourse, as well as opportunities for educators to engage with each other to develop capacity to serve their student population. Implications for research, practice, and policy are discussed.
- Education - Seattle