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What is MTSS? How to Explain MTSS to Almost Anyone

By Jaime Harris | January 16, 2020

What is MTSS? A multi-tiered system of support or MTSS is a framework with a tiered infrastructure that uses data to help match academic, social-emotional, and behavioral assessment and instructional resources to each and every student’s needs.  In this tiered, data-informed framework, educators work to ensure that the majority of students respond to core instruction.…

Creating a Culture of Data: Keys to Making the Shift and Making it Stick

By Dr. Amy Jackson | January 9, 2020

Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to work with district and school leaders all over the country. I get to share in celebrating their successes, but also in helping to overcome their challenges. While every district is different, I’ve noticed that most still seem to have one problem in common: data. When I…

Illuminator Spotlight: Jonalee Castillo

By Mark Adato | December 6, 2019

Spotlight On: Jonalee Castillo, 2nd Grade Teacher School Description: The O’Farrell Charter School (K-12), CA Avid National Demonstration School Student Population (K-12): 1,689  Title 1 School – Free/Reduced Lunch schoolwide  How do you use Illuminate with your students?  At the end of each week (or bi-weekly, depending on student understanding and progression), I give students…

[Infographic] What’s a Comprehensive Assessment System?

By Kate Pechacek | November 27, 2019

Every student has a unique learning journey. To support each student, educators need the right tools at their disposal to measure, monitor, and verify students’ learning as they progress. Those are the tools that make up a comprehensive assessment system. A comprehensive assessment system is a system of assessment tools varying in purpose that promotes…

Setting Goals That Matter for Students With Dyslexia

By Rachel Brown, Ph.D., NCSP | November 14, 2019

Dyslexia is a widely-recognized reading disorder that affects both learning-to-read and reading skills over one’s lifespan. Individuals with dyslexia can learn to read, although it often requires additional intensive instruction. Once dyslexia is diagnosed, a treatment plan that includes direct and systematic instruction of the major components of reading is needed. Alongside the treatment plan,…

Illuminator Spotlight: Marisol Lopez

By Jill Albracht | November 7, 2019

This Illuminator Spotlight blog features Marisol Lopez, a 4th grade teacher from Rosedale Elementary in Chico Unified School District (CA). Marisol impactfully uses assessment in many ways. She uses it to check if her students understood the day’s lesson, to identify students who need additional support, to gauge content mastery with standards-aligned tests, and to…

10 Persistent Progress Monitoring Myths Debunked

By Rachel Brown, Ph.D., NCSP | October 31, 2019

Progress monitoring is a widespread practice in K-12 schools across the country and for good reason! By collecting frequent data about a student’s progress toward a specific learning goal, teachers can keep tabs on how well an intervention is working and make changes as needed. However, despite the widespread acceptance and general use of progress…

BI Tool: Acadience Pathways Report

By Franck Reyherme | October 24, 2019

This month, Illuminate’s BI Tool Blog highlights Salt Lake City School District’s “Acadience Pathways” report, created by Brittany Dimick. Just like David Jansson’s “A-G Tracker” report, the focus of last month’s post, Brittany’s report uses conditional styling to make the most important data pop off the screen (or the page, for us dinosaurs who still…

Maximizing Tier 2 & Tier 3 Data: Progress Monitoring, Intervention Fidelity, and Intervention Effectiveness

By Jaime Harris | October 17, 2019

As educators, we’re typically really good at determining when a student has a need—largely because of our experience and because of our interest in the well-being of our students. And as we increase our data literacy and invest in excellent data analysis tools, we become better and faster at identifying the student’s specific need and…

How to Use Quality Assessment Content to Build Assessment and Data Literacy

By Jeremy O'Neil | October 11, 2019

If you’re like most educators, your credentialing program focused on two main things: teaching strategies and classroom management. Information about how to assess and understand data is lacking in many of these programs today. To fill that gap, districts are now working to build assessment and data literacy through professional development (PD). But many districts…

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