GV BOCES School Improvement

January 2022 Newsletter

News You Can Use

Embedded in the School Improvement (SI) newsletter you will find important updates, information, and resources from the New York State Department of Education (NYSED) & your regional Joint Management Team BOCES (Monroe 1 BOCES, Monroe 2 BOCES, Genesee Valley BOCES & Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES). Below are direct links that assist with staying current regarding news and changes at the state level.

January 2022 Regents Examinations Cancelled Due to Ongoing Pandemic

The January 2022 administration of the High School Regents Examination Program is cancelled due to the ongoing COVID–19 pandemic, State Education Commissioner Betty A. Rosa announced today. This cancellation applies to all Regents Examinations that had been scheduled for the January 2022 Regents Examination period. No decisions have been made regarding the June and August 2022 administrations of Regents Examinations or any other State assessment programs.

2021–22 Elementary- and Intermediate-level Testing Schedule

Upcoming Featured Speakers

Dr. Luvelle Brown

Title: Virtual Equity Series


Dr. Luvelle Brown, known for his experience in building and leading culturally responsive learning environments, will challenge participants with hard questions, and deep reflection to develop equitable, empathetic, culturally responsive, and inclusive learning environments. Participants can expect that best-practice examples from Dr. Brown's own nationally recognized work will be shared, as well as demonstrations on how to lead and activate change in your schools among colleagues, staff, and the broader community. Below is a breakdown of each synchronous virtual session.

January 12, 2022: Cultivating a culture of love, liberation, and belonging: Evaluating your system with an equity lens

February 14, 2022: Addressing unconscious bias in schools

March 23, 2022: Evaluating and creating local policy through a responsive, loving, and equitable lens

Patrice Bain

Title: Powerful Teaching

Description: Have you had students struggle to remember what was taught the previous year, semester, or even the last month? Have you had students internalize failure, thinking they won’t succeed because they’re “not smart”? There are reasons, researched reasons, why this happens. Patrice Bain, a veteran teacher and co-author of Powerful Teaching: Unleash the Science of Learning, knows the rigor required for the classroom. Having worked with cognitive scientists for over fifteen years, Bain developed teaching strategies based on robust research that improves learning. Best of all, these strategies don’t add to teachers’ already filled plates but will streamline what they are already doing. In this engaging and interactive workshop, Patrice Bain will unlock the research and provide evidence-based strategies that will transform your teaching so that all students will be successful learners.

In this workshop, educators will:

  • Learn the research behind: retrieval, spacing, interleaving, and feedback-driven metacognition

  • Understand how cognitive load, working memory, and desirable difficulties play a role in learning

  • Discern learning “myths” vs. “truths”

  • Grasp how simple changes to what they are already doing will increase student learning

  • Leave the workshop with a repertoire of tools and strategies that can be used the following day

Date: February 3, 2022

Location: Genesee Community College (GCC)

1 College Rd, Batavia, NY 14020

Conable Technology Building Room T102

Time: 8:30-3:00

Leadership Institute 2022 At-a-Glance Agenda

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Preparing to Score the Social Studies Framework Regents Exams

Get ready to recalibrate! Participants in this full-day session will explore the necessary documentation to successfully score both the New York State Global History & Geography and United States History & Government Regents exams. These Regents exams are aligned to the New York State Social Studies Framework. The morning session will consist of reviewing the scoring materials for the Global Regents with the afternoon session exploring US History materials.

Continue Your Professional Learning

The School Improvement (SI) newsletter also strives to continue professional learning for school administrators, teachers, and staff even from afar. This section of the newsletter will provide readers with timely and relevant learning aligned to evidence-based practices. If you would like more on topics outlined in the newsletter, please contact the SI department. Our contact information is located at the bottom of the newsletter. Enjoy!

Four-Part Article Series: Equity As The Lens For A School-Wide Tier 1 Framework

Part 1 - January Newsletter: Using Data to Establish Local Context

Part 2 - February Newsletter: Curriculum with an Equity Lens

Part 3 - March Newsletter: Instruction with an Equity Lens

Part 4 - April Newsletter: Assessment with an Equity Lens

In education, we continue to think of curriculum, instruction, and assessment as the three guiding pillars of a quality Tier 1 framework across classrooms. Having a guaranteed and viable curriculum is one assurance towards ALL students having equitable learning opportunities. Student learning has always been at the center of developing/revising curriculum, instruction, and assessment. The NYS Board of Regents 2021 Call to Action states that districts should consider inclusive and culturally responsive teaching and learning as part of their local policy. This includes inclusive curriculum, rigorous instruction and accessible assessment practices.

Districts have a critical role in elevating the issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion; setting policies; establishing data targets; reviewing and modifying their curriculum (The NYS Board of

Regents Framework on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in New York’s Schools: A Call to Action, 2021). Before beginning an audit/revision of curriculum, instruction, and assessment, districts might consider reviewing data sets to establish a clear understanding of the student population. Knowing the student that your district serves can change over time, and having this information will support accessible learning situations for ALL students by design, not chance. The data review can also provide information on areas of strength and the need for diversity, equity, and inclusiveness.

It is important to establish shared and collaborative data review teams that can work together to consider multiple perspectives, develop common understandings about equity, and create safe spaces for dialogue about data (Fabillar, Education Development Center, 2018). The data team should consider demographic data, perceptual data, student learning data, and systems data as articulated by Victoria L. Bernhardt in her 2013 publication of Data Analysis for Continuous School Improvement (see picture below).

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When looking at your data, it is important to examine who benefits from the current structures and systems that are in place, and who does not. This can be done by disaggregating the data into student/staff subgroups. Some areas to consider are race/ethnicity, gender, native language, ability/disability, gender identity, and socioeconomic status. Districts can review many data reports on the United States Department of Education website by reviewing their civil rights data.

Other areas to disaggregate data could include:

  • Performance

  • Suspension

  • Graduation

  • Classification

  • AP courses admissions

  • Extracurricular activities

  • Code of Conduct

  • Attendance policies

  • Field trip policies

  • Restrictions to participate in sports

  • Dress codes

In the February 2022 School Improvement Newsletter, we will explore ways to examine local curriculum with an equity lens. Stay tuned for Part 2 of this series!

School Improvement Spotlights

School Improvement (SI) takes great pride in the work we do at the state level, regionally, and when working directly with component districts. This section of the newsletter offers insight into the work SI does and provides recognition to local districts that strive for continuous school improvement. Partnerships and collaboration are the key to everyone's success!

Building a Strong Curricular Foundation

Alexander Central School District is in the process of building a strong curricular foundation and looking to, in essence, future proof their curriculum revision cycle. Not only have the district’s instructional leaders been hard at work collaborating with BOCES coordinators to raise awareness and build capacity with the NYS Next Generation standards and local curriculum development, but they are also building a long-term scope and sequence to ensure that they revisit the work. The district is now working to layout a curriculum revision cycle that rotates on a five year basis, which would provide a spiraling focus for each discipline to reflect upon, revise, and rewrite unit-level documents on a rotating schedule. In this model, teachers are empowered to know that their current work matters, will have some reasonable assurance of sustainability, and will also be given the time and tools to discuss large-scale curricular adjustments that may come in the future. At this time, teachers are currently working on digging into their state standards for deep understanding and prioritization, as well as building learning intentions and success criteria for a model unit plan. In an attempt to model clarity, future work dates are already identified to apply this process to additional units as well as discuss modifications after the initial creation. Teachers have also been informed uniformly of specific times in which they will be allotted additional opportunities to continue their collaboration. In all, the response has been unanimously positive and the district has made great strides to enact and support their faculty’s collective efficacy.

Follow School Improvement on Twitter

Don’t forget that you can follow the School Improvement Team (SIT) on Twitter. The team is often posting information about upcoming professional learning opportunities, educational resources, and strategies for the classroom. You can stay in tune with what is happening at Genesee Valley BOCES and the SIT by following #gvbocessit.

2021-2022 Regional Professional Learning Opportunities

Registration for upcoming regional professional learning opportunities can be accessed through the links below. Check out the various opportunities the School Improvement Team is offering during the 2021-2022 school year. We look forward to seeing you in the upcoming months!

Need Support?

Please direct all requests for service to the Director of School Improvement, Stephanie Burns at 585.344.7923.