As we continued to pivot upward in a spirit of excellence, we knew that a curriculum management system would allow us to have all curricula housed in one place and breed consistency in curriculum formatting and expectations.
It would also allow our ultimate goal of having our curriculum public-facing on our district website to be accomplished. Through extensive vetting with our Curriculum Advisory Council, comprised of representatives from the Faculty Association and our administrative staff, we determined that Eduplanet21 would help us accomplish this goal.
Once the curriculum management system was in place, our staff was supported in writing curriculum units and embedding them into the Eduplanet21 platform.
The staff was divided into two cohorts to make the curriculum writing process manageable. The first cohort comprised all humanities courses, and the second cohort comprised STEM courses.
Our staff embraced this work and wrote over two hundred units in a short period of time. Through collaborative leadership and consultation, a vetting process was established to review the units and provide opportunities for curriculum refinement.
A student work protocol was also collaboratively created to provide a tool for the professional learning communities to further reflect on the curriculum design and student mastery of standards. We have begun using this protocol and will look to further its use in the upcoming school year.
To incorporate a digital aspect of the curriculum auditing, our Eduplanet21 representative assisted us in taking advantage of the tools available within Eduplanet21. One such tool was the Learning Goals Frequency Report.
The district had previously performed a deep data dive with the outcomes of our standards-based assessments from grades nine through twelve and identified three ELA standards that we desired to see incorporated within all courses. With the Standards Frequency Report, we would easily determine how many times the three ELA standards were being embedded into the UbD curriculum units.
The Learning Goals Frequency Report was first shared with administrators during one of our District Administrative Council meetings. It fostered collaborative dialogue around our next steps as a leadership team and systemically about teaching and learning. We also agreed that sharing this tool with our staff was important.
Eduplanet’s Stage 1 Learning Goals Frequency report allows you to see how many units
are addressing each of your standards or schoolwide goals. Learn more!
During one of our early release days, the staff received information on what the Learning Goals Frequency Report is, how to use it, and why the tool is important in our curriculum work.
The goal was for the PLC teams to reflect on how the three ELA standards were being actualized in the curriculum units across the district. They then worked through how it was being taught and assessed and within how many units the standards were being addressed.
With this report, the staff could easily see how many times the ELA standards were embedded across the district, department, course, and each stage of the UbD framework. This provided a gap analysis whereby staff could assess opportunities for further embedding of the standards.
We still have a way to go to operate with greater expertise around the tools. However, I am proud of our staff’s willingness and growth mindset around learning new tools.
Using the Unit Status Report, we plan to further deepen our curriculum auditing processes this year. This report will allow us to delve additionally into the manageability of the content being developed and whether or not there are any inconsistencies in the number of standards being addressed across courses.
The Unit Status Report provides an “at a glance” look for leadership to identify if their current written curriculum meets all necessary completion requirements determined by the school or district and to ensure curriculum alignment.
Our embracement of curriculum management and auditing have been essential in helping us to create a guaranteed and viable curriculum for our students. We believe that it will help us reach our district goals and obtain the long-term transfer goals.
The long-term transfer goals speak to what students should be able to independently do upon graduating as a Bloom Township District 206 student. I have enjoyed seeing the growth amongst our staff as it pertains to this work and look forward to continuing the work.
Reach out today to speak with an Eduplanet21 customer service representative to learn more.
Mrs. Dorith Johnson is entering her sixth year as the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum, Instruction, Assessments, and Grants for Bloom Township District 206. As an educator for over 26 years, Mrs. Johnson has served as a high school math teacher, school and district administrator, and a School Improvement Grant Reader for the Illinois State Board of Education.
Mrs. Johnson previously served as the Area Assistant Director for the Illinois Center for School Improvement at American Institutes for Research (AIR), overseeing seventeen school districts in the South Cook Area and a portion of Joliet.
Through managing a team of District Liaisons and District Assistance Team coaches, she supported the districts by implementing research-based practices around building effective data-informed interdependent leadership teams, intentional data systems, and communication and feedback loops throughout the system to provide the infrastructure for continuous improvement.
Mrs. Johnson holds a Master of Arts degree in Educational Administration and a Master of Arts degree in Mathematics Education. Mrs. Johnson has been married for 23 years, and she and her husband have two wonderful children.