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The Do’s and Don’ts of Data. Elementary Instructional Facilitators Caldwell County Schools. What We ’ ve Learned. Do: . Don ’ t:. Get buy-in from teachers and administrators. Include horizontal and vertical teams in data discussion.

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The do s and don ts of data

The Do’s and Don’ts of Data

Elementary Instructional Facilitators

Caldwell County Schools

What we ve learned
What We’ve Learned. . .



  • Get buy-in from teachers and administrators.

  • Include horizontal and vertical teams in data discussion.

  • Discuss student data in terms of what students need to be successful.

  • Discuss student data in terms of why the student is not responding to instruction.

  • Use data conversations as a “gotcha” moment.

  • Keep data “private.” Teachers can be defensive about what is considered private.

  • Discuss data in terms of what a teacher is not doing.

  • Discuss students as having deficits. Automatically assuming that the student has deficits halts conversations.

Data walls
Data Walls

  • Formats vary dependent on the needs of the school

  • Show overall school data and individual student data

  • Dynamic, not static

Data walls1
Data Walls



  • Show grade level trends

  • Sort students to determine student needs

  • Refer to data walls in discussions

  • Keep walls in areas away from students and parents

  • Single out teachers

  • Sort students to determine which “won’t make it” at the end of the year

  • Create a wall and never revisit it.

  • Use the data walls in conversation/conference with parents or anyone that is not part of the school staff.

Data notebooks
Data Notebooks

  • Vary depending on the needs of the school

  • School notebooks

  • Classroom notebooks

  • Student notebooks

Data notebooks1
Data Notebooks



  • Design notebooks that are useful for tracking student progress.

  • Allow students to set their own goals and track their own progress.

  • Keep data notebooks accessible to teachers and/or students.

  • Make notebooks “one more thing” that has to be done. If it’s not useful, don’t do it.

  • Keep student data a secret from the students.

  • Put notebooks in areas where they are not easily accessed or they will be forgotten.

Data meetings
Data Meetings



  • Set an agenda and use meeting times to discuss student achievement.

  • Look for trends in data.

  • Set SMART goals for groups of students needing the same skills.

  • Determine if interventions/ enrichment plans are effective.

  • Use meeting times to gripe about students or other school issues.

  • Use gut feelings to determine student needs.

  • Leave the meeting without a plan for intervention/ enrichment.

  • Leave plans open.

Data meetings1
Data Meetings

  • SMART Goals:

    • Specific

    • Measurable

    • Attainable

    • Realistic

    • Time-bound

  • Action Plans:

School administration
School Administration



  • Be knowledgeable about the types of data being collected at the school.

  • Set a high expectation for student achievement and instruction.

  • Follow through and follow up with teachers and students.

  • Assume that teachers will take care of data collection and know everything they need to know.

  • Allow expectations to drop or discussions to fade.

  • Forget to check on the progress of action plans and talk with teachers and students about their progress.

Instructional facilitators
Instructional Facilitators:



  • Assist teachers in data collection.

  • Assist teachers in looking at ways to use data in instruction.

  • Act as a reference for teachers in setting SMART goals and creating an action plan.

  • Provide teachers with resources to carry out action plans.

  • Inform teachers and administrators of trends occurring across the district.

  • Coordinate testing.

  • Analyze data for teachers.

  • Write action plans or participate in the implementation of the plan.

  • Write lesson plans for core instruction, enrichment or intervention.

  • Compare schools to each other.