Tackling the SGG

Resources to help you through your Student Growth Goal

Student Growth Goals on the Mind

As we finish up "Professional Growth Goals", and head into September, Student Growth is the next topics that is weighing heavily on the minds of many. There are lots of questions about pre-tests, appropriate measures,and identifying the skills that are in most need of improvement.


For many of the "Others" of the OPGES, this will be the first time they have to write an SGG, and the task may seem impossible. In general, find everything you need at the KDE OPGES page [here]. Check out some of the "SMART" goal resources below to help you get started.

Step 1: Determine Needs

The Entry Point

Ahhh, the entry point into your SMART goal. Where in the world to begin?


As teachers and "others" there are tons of resources available to us to use. In many cases, building administrators have been spending countless hours preparing reports of student data that you can draw from, but looking for gaps in specific skills can seem impossible.


Don't miss KDE's resource on Determining Needs [here]. The enduring skills sample list is especially helpful to browse through before trying out the enduring skills template. The OPGES Pre-planning kit can be found [here]. Click on "Think and Plan Tool" to print the document that will help walk you through the entire process.


If you are new to the goal setting process, you might want to choose an area that you are really comfortable with to get you started this year (reading, research, multimedia technology integration, math?) And look at the data specific to those standards.


Possible Sources of Data:


  • STAR Enterprise Data
  • iReady Diagnostic
  • MAPS
  • K-Prep Data
  • Teacher designed pre-assessment
  • Observation that includes some kind data collection


Use these data types to really drill down to specific skills that show room for growth.



It would also be a good idea to refer to identified needs of your school community as a place to start. Be sure to:

  • Review your District & School Vision and Mission
  • Check your school's CSIP (ask your building admin, or do a search on your District web page)
  • Ask! Talk to your building administrator, other teachers (including those from the grade level before yours), guidance counselors, and many of your students will be able to tell you what they need help with!
  • If you are an "Other" - ask your administrators to include you in receiving copies of testing data in the future - chances are they haven't bothered you with it in the past, but now we need it:)

What if you don't have a lot of assessment data for your area?

You may want to begin by getting an idea of what your students know - and look for gaps in what they need to know.


Below you will find two articles on constructing self-assessments to help you identify those skills most in need of growth based on student perception and voice.

Step 2: Create your SMART Goal

What can I use for help?

When goal writing, use the SMART method. Is it Specific? Measurable? Appropriate? Time-Bound?


Check out KDE's graphic [here] of the SMART goal process and links to KDE released PowerPoints [here].


You may also want to use a template to help you write you goal, such as the one [here].


If you're looking for examples, you'll find some in the KDE resources. You can also see some examples from other states [here] or [here].


Finally, this Student Growth Rubric from Washington State, may help you decide if you're on the right track.

SMART Goals in Education

Hardin County Schools - PGES Resources by Shelee Clark

Do not miss this resource below. Shelee Clark has been compiling reflections and resources on the entire process, including Student Growth a blog.

Design your Measuring Tool

You may be using state testing or a traditional, standardized test to measure your student's ultimate attainment of a goal, or you may be working on a teacher developed rubric.


If you're going to go with a standard test, you might want to review Carnegie Mellon's "Creating Exams"


When it comes to designing rubrics, there are number of formats to consider. Carnegie Mellon has a reference page for rubrics with examples. You will also want to know the difference between Holistic, Analytic and Single Point Rubrics which you can learn about at the Cult of Pedagogy.


For the be all end all page of rubric examples, check out Kathy Shrock's Guide to Assessment and Rubrics.


Other Rubric Examples


Step 3: Create and Implement Teaching and Learning Strategies

Design your Lessons to Help Attain Goals

KDE has a number of thinking and planning tools that you can use as a reference to get you started.


When it comes to designing lessons, you also may want to take into consideration methods explored in Backward Design and Carnegie Mellon's "Creating Assignments" as well as How to Write a Master Plan for Student Learning. I'm also a personal fan of Marzano's Classroom Instruction that Works. You can explore more at the post Planning for Effective Instruction and see some sample graphic organizers at the "Marzano's Instructional Strategies" wiki.

Step 4: Monitor Student Progress

Use a Variety of Formative Assessment Tools to Gauge Progress

Need some tools to help you think of formative assessment strategies?


Carnegie Mellon has a number of great resources including: "Using Classroom Assessment Techniques", which describes a number of methods to quickly assess students in an informal way. You may also want to check out their "Concept Mapping" or "Group Work" advice when it comes to assessing. The Group Work article in particular is nice because it reminds us to assess the process - not just the project.


The info above in Step 3 regarding rubrics may be useful here as well.


Using your formative assessment you can decide if you need to intervene to help students reach the goal, and if you need to differentiate more to accomplish goals.

Step 5: Did Students Reach the Goal?

Tracking your Data

You will need to keep good records along the way to track your student's progress toward reaching your goal. Be sure that you are keeping track of formative assessment before you get to that summative assessment that you outlined in your goal.


For an excellent tool to help you do just that, take a look at the SGG Data Analysis Spreadsheet by Shelee Clark. The spreadsheet can be found with Clark's Student Growth Goals: Resources to Finish the Year post, which would be great to review.

Johnson Elementary Library

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