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Connecticut . Trevor Yates Vice-President Cambridge Education (LLC). September 2007. WHO ARE WE.

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Trevor Yates


Cambridge Education (LLC)

September 2007



Since 1983, Cambridge Education has combined the expertise and experience of its permanently employed staff with self-employed associates. We currently employ 550 full time staff and have a data base of 7,000 associate education specialists world-wide; and have a current turnover of over $100m

Our vision is to create a lasting improvement in the quality of education experienced by the young people and adults we support, either directly or indirectly, through our relationship with clients

Our aim is to provide professional educational advice and practical solutions

Our objective is to contribute to and be part of the development of every organization we work with

Our approach is to develop partnerships based upon mutual trust.



Funding Agencies – Department for International Development (DFID), European Commission (EC), Asian Development Bank (ADB), World Bank (WB), International Development Bank (IDB), UN Agencies, Other bilateral donors (Sweden, Japan, Finland, Ireland, Denmark)

Government Ministries – policy support, planning and budgeting,capacity building, restructuring, systems development etc

Government Institutions and Agencies – teacher training institutions, curriculum authorities, examination boards,inspection authorities

Districts and Schools – district reform,policy development, leadership development, performance management, curriculum design, professional development.



street children, non-formal




Technical & vocational education


civic Education: curriculum development and training of teachers.


examination systems reform


project preparation, policy development, teacher training,


Basic education & vocational education


textbook design and publishing, education management, project management


pre- and in-service teacher training, , curriculum development, textbook development, EMIS, assessment and examination reform,


project design, school development

planning, teacher training, curriculum

development, inspection, headteacher training,


project preparation, policy development at both primary and secondary levels, school development planning, inspection, curriculum development, teacher training, headteacher training, textbook production, EMIS,




policy development for teacher



integrating ICT in the curriculum, teacher training, institutional development,

human resource development


project preparation, textbook

development, production and



project preparation, sector review,

monitoring and evaluation




strategic and financial planning, institutional development, teacher training, curriculum



school planning and financing, cost-sharing


support to the development of a SWAp, policy and planning, school improvement, teacher training,


support to design of a SWAp, and development of textbook policy


financial planning, institutional development, human resource development, EMIS


project design and sector development planning


project and sector review, non-formal education, institutional development

South Africa

strategic and financial planning, institutional development, human resource development, quality assurance, teacher training, curriculum development, equity, school improvement


TVET project design and

policy development



School inspection; district reform; performance management; coaching and mentoring; school improvement; school development planning; c.p.d.; site-based management; children’s services; health education; BSF; academies,ICT



School evaluations, district reform, executive coaching, district accountability planning, school improvement school development planning, technical assistance, charter schools, charter management organizations


Strengthening Tech Voc Education


Curriculum development, leadership training, school development planning, language development, VET, performance management,


Development of language centre

Windward Island

Dominica, St Vincent, St Lucia, Grenada - curriculum development, assessment, children at risk, equity, EMIS, teacher professional development, literacy and numeracy development

credible partner
Credible partner

Over 25 years experience

  • 45+ countries world wide;
  • developing local capacity and promoting school improvement.

Completed over 1,800 schools reviews across US

Worked in Connecticut for past six years

  • 50 + school reviews
  • Executive Coaching (State level)
  • Effective Classroom Observation (over 100 Administrators)
  • Facilitated Elementary School Principals Network (ESPN)
  • Provided Technical Assistance for District Improvement and Accountability Planning

Responsible for running Local Education Authorities in UK

  • Islington; Southwark; Isles of Scilly

Largest single contractor of school inspections in England

  • over 2,000 inspections a year on behalf of UK Government

Trained Inspectors and Reviewers for over 15 years in

  • America; Eastern Europe, Hong Kong,Thailand and UK.


Islington LEA – since 2000, when Cambridge Education took over responsibility, Islington LEA has moved from being considered a failing authority to the top quartile overall and top 5% of LEA’s for SEN, according to UK Government inspections - in 2 of past 3 years recognised as the most improved LEA in England.

Islington schools - in 2000 Ofsted Inspections identified 20% of schools in either special measures or serious weakness. In the Autumn of 2005 0% of schools were in either of these categories - and the 7 schools inspected under the New Inspections arrangements were rated:

3 outstanding, 2 very good and 2 good.

Achievement of boys…for the past three years, CEA@Islington have consistently succeeded in raising the achievement levels of both boys and girls, while reducing the gap in performance between girls and boys.

Ethnic minority pupils…African Caribbean, African and Bangladeshi pupils in Islington are outperforming their counter parts in the rest of the country – in tests at 11, 14 and 16.

purpose of quality reviews
Purpose of Quality Reviews

The School Quality Review program is a central component in the State’s strategy for promoting continuous school improvement.

It is designed to enable and assist:

  • schools and districts to have a clear view of their strengths, areas for development
  • the School Board and the Connecticut State Department of Education to have a clear picture of the quality of education provided in each district and individual schools

A commitment to a cycle of monitoring, evaluation, review and revision (MERR) by the school’s leadership and staff is vital in creating a dynamic organisational culture of continuous improvement

key focus for school quality reviews includes
Key Focus for School Quality Reviews includes


  • The academic performance levels achieved by students in the school.
  • The quality of the education provided, including the quality of teaching and its impact on learning; the curriculum; community and parental involvement
  • How well the school uses data to inform instructional decisions at building and classroom levels
  • How well the school provides for student’s personal character development.
  • How well the school is led and managed.

These mirror the components of Connecticut’s Accountability for Learning Model.

the criterion for school quality reviews
The Criterion for School Quality Reviews

1: Student achievement in the core subjects

2: The quality of instruction through teaching, learning and curriculum

3. Students’ personal character development

4. Effective leadership and management

5. Partnerships with parents and community

key focus for district quality reviews
Key Focus for District Quality Reviews

The District Quality Review process is designed to address three central questions:

  • What service and support does the district provide to the schools in its system?
  • How well does it provide these essential services and functions?
  • To what degree is the district a high performance system—as a whole and in key functions?
the criterion for district quality reviews
The Criterion for District Quality Reviews
the grade levels
The grade levels

There is a 5 point scale

quality reviews have 3 stages
Quality reviews have 3 stages

Stage 1 - Pre – site visit

Stage 2 - Site-visit.

Stage 3 - Feedback.

stage 1 pre assessment visit
Stage 1 Pre-Assessment Visit

Preparatory work is the foundation of a successful Quality Reviews.

Each district and every school will be asked to complete short Self-Evaluation Forms

(DSEF and SEF)

  • summarize the district’s and school’s own perception of how well they meet the Quality Review Criteria.   

Prior to the review the State and / or District and will provide Cambridge Education with

key student achievement data.

At the start of the visit the district / school will provide the lead reviewer with:

  • the latest version of the district / school’s development (improvement) plan;
  • copies of reports of any internal evaluation undertaken during the past two years;
  • organizational charts which highlights any recent the changes made, including roles and responsibilities,
  • details of the staff professional development program.

The lead reviewer will be able to use this information alongside the SEF to gain an understanding of the school context, its history and most importantly actions, which have taken place during the past two years.

stage 2 site visit school reviews
Stage 2 Site visit – School reviews

The reviewer(s)will be in the school for two days, during which time they collect evidence, through:

  • meeting with Principal and School Leadership Team ;
  • observing teaching and learning;
  • examining students’ work;
  • discussions with teachers, students, parents and other members of the school community.

This evidence provides them with a thorough understanding of

the range and quality of the school’s work.

site visit district reviews
Site visit – District reviews

The district review team will normally consist of 4 reviewers:

  • 2 from Cambridge Education and 2 from State Department of Education

The review team will spend 1 week reviewing each district

Day 1 will be spent at the State Department, reviewing and analyzing data

The remaining 4 days will be spent in the District.

The team will hold meetings / focus groups with a range of individuals and

organizations including:

  • The Superintendent and District Leadership Team
  • The Chair and at least one other member of the District Board
  • District leaders for: instruction / data-analysis / operational support / fiscal
  • A range of stakeholders:

Parents / local community groups/ unions / administrators/ teachers

The team will attend district meetings and observe the workings of the district

This evidence provides them with a thorough understanding of the range and

quality of the district’s work.

student learning and development
Student learning and development

Evidence is collected to evaluate the impact the district / school is having on student learning and development:

  • standards achieved and progress made by students
  • the impact on student development: attitudes, character and personal growth and development
engaging the students and staff
Engaging the students and staff

In schools:

Reviewers will talk with students in order to assess:

  • their understanding and knowledge of different subjects
  • their attitudes towards work
  • their life at school

Reviewers will talk with teachers in order to judge how

roles and responsibilities are fulfilled

Reviewers will ask teachers for:

  • examples of student’s work
  • curriculum frameworks
  • record of internal assessment
  • results in external tests and examinations

The school may offer other measures or indicators of

attainment and progress

engaging the staff
Engaging the staff

In Districts:

Reviewers will talk with central office staff in order to judge how

roles and responsibilities are fulfilled

Reviewers will ask staff for:

  • examples of policies and procedures
  • evidence on the quality of the services provided by the district to the schools it serves track individual work
  • evidence of the impact of the district’s work on student achievement
  • curriculum frameworks
  • record of district assessments
  • results in external tests and examinations
  • evidence of how the district monitors, evaluates and reviews the quality of its own services and the quality of the education provided in its schools

The district may offer other measures or indicators of school improvement

what questions underpin the review
What questions underpin the review?

Quality reviews asks three key questions:

  • how well is the district / school doing now?
  • what strategies and factors does the district / school employ at present to contribute to its success?
  • what does the district / school need to do in order to further improve?
overall judgment
Overall judgment

How good is the district / school?

What does it do well?

What should it do to improve?

The MIC approach:

What should it Maintain?

What should it Improve?

What should it Change?

stage 3 feedback
Stage 3 Feedback

Throughout the visit the reviewers meet regularly with the Superintendent / Principal to:

  • provide on going feedback on the progress of the review
  • check and clarify understandings
  • request any other areas of information
  • give a daily overview of the observations made

The Superintendent / Principal can also direct feedback to the lead

reviewer on any issues which need following up

final oral feedback
Final oral feedback

At the end of the visit the reviewers provide oral feedback and leave a written summary with the school. This feedback includes:

  • overview of the outcomes from the review
  • outlines the main strengths of the school and areas for development

If there has been effective communication it is unlikely that this feedback will contain any surprises.

It is helpful for the superintendent / principal to have others from their team and/or members of the board present at the feedback.

This enables the principal to listen, direct all his /her attention to the message given and to ask questions.

the final report
The final report

The final written report is an analysis of the district / school’s strengths and areas for development.

Districts /Schools have the opportunity to review the draft report for factual accuracy before final publication, which is usually within 4 weeks of the end of the site visit


What the school does well

  • The school is well lead and managed by the principal and ably supported by many key teaching and support staff in the school.
  • The literacy and numeracy facilitators lead and manage their areas of responsibility very well and are driving improvements in English language arts and mathematics.
  • There are good systems for recording and analyzing data on students’ achievements. This underpins the improvements, which the school has made.
  • The school is making good use of data to measure progress, identify where it is doing well and target where more improvement is needed.
  • There is a good climate for learning and relationships between students and adults are positive. The students’ behavior is generally good in classes and around the school.

What the school needs to improve

  • Improve consistency in the implementation of the school’s strategies for teaching literacy and numeracy by:
    • creating more opportunities for students to engage in meaningful discussions
    • improving further, the teachers’ questioning skills
    • raising the quality and quantity of hands-on work that the students undertake
    • improving the interest and productivity levels of tasks that students do in class
    • ensuring senior leaders make more frequent visits through classrooms to maintain a clear oversight of the quality and consistency of teaching
    • continuing to improve teachers’ knowledge and confidence to differentiate work
    • continuing to develop the strategic use of computerized learning.
post review
Post Review

The district / school can use the report to

  • develop a plan of improvement
  • focus on the totality of its work
  • keep teaching and learning at the forefront of its thinking and planning

When district and school evaluation is set within a culture of self-reflection, analysis of results and action, it becomes a very powerful tool for district / school improvement

Thought of in this way a Quality Review is a beginning

district school improvement planning
District - School improvement planning





(open our minds and

behaviors to spot the



the district/


… continuing to assessthe needs of the communityand adapt to deliver those



(Establish theenterprise)



(Evaluate and choosethe opportunities)


(Vision & Plan )