Laura Beth Jackson

Chelsea Treadway
Maggie Hayes
Jordan Johnson
Disaggregated Data Project
Trace Crossings Elementary School

2011-2012 4
Grade ARMT Scores
Student Group Reading (% at level 4) Math (% at level 4)
TCES Hoover
TCES Hoover
Whites 70.8% 75.7% 66.7% 45.8% 70.7% 65.3%
Blacks 23.7% 41.6% 39.3% 7.9% 36.3% 46.7%
Non-Poverty 69.4% 75.5% 75.3% 43.6% 75.4% 72.7%
Poverty 16.7% 40.3% 44.2% 4.7% 34.2% 49.9%

2010-2011 4
Grade ARMT Scores
Student Group Reading (% at level 4) Math (% at level 4)
TCES Hoover
TCES Hoover
Whites 81.8% 78.4% 65.3% 74.6% 74.7% 65.1%
Blacks 63.6% 46.2% 35.9% 42.4% 46.6% 42.7%
Non-Poverty 80.6% 77.3% 72.6% 68.7% 74.5% 71.8%
Poverty 57.1% 43.1% 41.7% 42.9% 43.5% 47.2%

Robinson Elementary School

2011-2012 4
Grade ARMT Scores
Student Group Reading (% at level 4) Math (% at level 4)
RES Birmingham
RES Birmingham
Whites N/A 45.5% 66.7% N/A 31.8% 65.3%
Blacks 25.0% 37.7% 39.3% 42.3% 48.4% 46.7%
Non-Poverty N/A 65.9% 75.3% N/A 68.2% 72.7%
Poverty 24.6% 34.5% 44.2% 24.6% 46.8% 49.9%

2010-2011 4
Grade ARMT Scores
Student Group Reading (% at level 4) Math (% at level 4)
RES Birmingham
RES Birmingham
Whites N/A 50.0% 65.3% N/A 62.5% 65.3%
Blacks 36.2% 37.0% 39.3% 40.4% 46.5% 46.7%
Non-Poverty N/A 53.9% 75.3% N/A 62.4% 72.7%
Poverty 34.9% 34.8% 44.2% 41.9% 45.2% 49.9%

TCES Summary
 Observations of teaching strategies, professional development, special
programs, or resources in these areas
o Reading
 Professional Development/Special Programs/Resources
 Ed Camp: had reading teaching discussions across all the
sessions. Many of these sessions focus specifically on using
technology to improve reading skills.
 TCES has a fully stocked library as well as a full-time librarian
on staff. The librarian holds grade level specific book readings
for students and helps students choose appropriate books.
Additionally, teachers allow students an opportunity to visit
the library at least a few times every week.
 Full-time reading coach: Mrs. Stubblefield is the full-time
reading coach at TCES. She holds small group instructional
sessions for struggling readers as well as support for teachers
with specific questions.
 In order to excite students about reading, teachers and staff at
TCES plan and celebrate reading-related events. For example,
the whole school participates in the Read for the Record
program and Dr. Seuss Day.
 Cub Club
 Teaching strategies
 For independent reading assignments, students are assigned to
use leveled books. Students are assessed throughout the year
so they know which books are appropriate for their reading
 The daily reading block always includes small group
instruction. This practice ensures that students on every
reading level are being challenged and learning new concepts
in addition to the required content.
 Teachers use “Big Book” readings during whole group
instruction to teach concepts of print.
o Math
 Professional Development/Special Programs/Resources
 Ed Camp: had math teaching discussions across all the sessions
 Math Night at TCES: event held designed to get parents and
students excited about learning math, background information
on the school’s math curriculum, finding math concepts in
everyday life, and enrichment opportunities in the home.
 Full-time math coach: Mrs. Puchta holds small groups for
struggling math students, offers student specific support for
students, keeps the school environment “math focused” with
decorations around the school.
 Cub Club
 Teaching strategies
 TCES uses Investigations math program, which is designed to
help children understand math number operations, geometry,
data, measurement, and even algebra basics.
 Investigations encourages students to find more than one way
to solve problems with teaching strategies such as number
talks, turn-and-talk, and modeling.
 Students are constantly asked to prove their thinking.
 Investigations Program uses a variety of student groupings
(whole class, small group, pairs, and one-on-one) to meet
individual student learning needs.
 Investigations requires several types of math manipulatives:
pattern blocks, cubes, etc. so students can visualize
mathematical concepts.
 Students are given the chance for independent practice with
specific math concepts during math center times. The teachers
individualize even independent word by providing
modifications for low and high level students on every game.

 Strengths based on data
o Initially looking at the data charts between the two school years, we could
not see any strengths based on this data. However, we recognize that TCES is
still adjusting to a demographic shift in their student population that
occurred in the past five years. The teachers and administrators are taking
intentional action to address these changes, and we expect the data for the
next year to reflect improvements.

 Weaknesses based on data
o 1. Poor scores in comparison to local schools in both reading and math
 All demographic groups (whites, blacks, poverty, non-poverty)
performed below the Hoover district average in both reading and
 This is a big shift between 2010-2011 school year.
o 2. All student demographics struggle in math when compared to Hoover
 Even white students performed poorly. Only 45.8% of white TCES
students were at level 4 math proficiency vs. 70.7% in the Hoover
o 3. Black and poverty student groups perform well below white and non-
poverty student groups
 Black students score significantly below both the Hoover and AL state
averages in reading and math.
 Only 4.7% of poverty students at TCES performed at level four in

 Initiatives/ school improvement plans to increase performance
o According to the vice principal Mrs. Stone, the entire school is focusing on
improving math scores as a result of the AMRT scores.
o Teachers place a large amount of instructional time in math for student
discussion and exploration in math class. For example, math classes
consistently include number talks and class discussions.
o The school adopted the math program Investigations.
o In reading, librarian and reading coaches have worked to make reading
relevant and accessible for students. For example, the school is decorated
with QR codes related to different books.
o In both math and reading, TCES has a tiered RTI model. Even during regular
class instructional time, support staff comes to hold small groups/aid
struggling students.

 Informing/involving parents with data
o Like all Alabama school districts, all data is available on PARCA’s website
o TCES math night was designed to involve parents in data by explaining the
Investigations math program and opportunities for enrichment in the home.

 Accountability resources
o TCES uses Global Scholar as an accountability resource for its teachers.

 Support personnel
o Math coach: Mrs. Puchta
o Reading coach: Mrs. Stubblefield
o 6 extra instructional and Title I teachers

 Data meetings
o TCES does hold data meetings; however, they do not seem to be a big
emphasis for teachers.

Robinson Summary
 Observations of teaching strategies, professional development, special
programs, or resources in these areas
o Reading
 Professional Development/Special Programs/Resources
 The reading coach can also provide professional development
in the area of reading for the teachers.
 The individuals on the support staff are also resources for the
teachers to use.
 Teaching Strategies
 There is not much focus put on reading and teaching reading
through various strategies. Students spend about 30 minutes a
week in the library but reading strategies are not taught during
that time. Rather than instruction or even reading novels or
passages, students are given magazines to read silently.
 In the classroom, the students are given reading passages and
questions to go along with them. This is supposed to help
prepare the students for testing and comprehending passages
that they read. The teachers do not typically lead the teaching
of strategies but they provide resources for the students.
o Math
 Professional Development/Special Programs/Resources
 Teachers are provided professional development in math
through AMSTI.
 The main special programs that take place at Robinson were
character education programs and things like the math derby.
 One math resource that is used at Robinson elementary is
AMSTI. They have a representative who comes to the school
and teaches classes, including fourth graders. The AMSTI
individual also meets with teachers and talks about effective
math strategies that would be very beneficial in the classroom.
This serves as professional development for the teachers when
they meet with her during planning periods as well as while
the teachers observe her teaching their class.
 The individuals on the support staff are also resources for the
teachers to use.
 Teaching Strategies
 The teaching strategies for math typically revolved around the
textbook and workbook pages. Students had practice pages
that they completed individually and there was not much
communication going on among the students to problem solve.

 Strengths based on data
o Math
 The only real math strength was that the scores went up by 2%
between the years.
o Reading:
 Robinson remained very close to the Birmingham City percentages for
the 2010-2011 school year in reading.

 Weaknesses based on data
o Math:
 Scores decreased drastically from the two years for poverty students
o Reading:
o The scores on the ARMT went down from 2010-2011 to the 2011-2012
school year.
o The scores at Robinson remained about 10% below the district average in
2011-2012 and close to half of the state’s averages.

 Initiatives/ school improvement plans to increase performance
 Robinson created an event called the math derby. This consisted of students
being divided by grade level and having a math competition. Not all students
participated but a few individuals from each class represented their peers.
This helped to spark enthusiasm in math and created excitement. The
students who did participate in the event had practice problems and had to
prepare for the event. The students were quizzed on math questions during
the actual derby. Robinson is trying hard to make students enjoy math
because when they do, test scores typically increase.
 The school is trying to add a little bit more emphasis on reading through
bulletin boards focused on the topic. There is one bulletin board in particular
that is about text and many of its different forms.
 Robinson is a part of Read 180, which is an initiative to improve literacy and
to help prepare students for college and careers.
 Robinson is also a part of Book It-another reading incentive program to help
motivate children to read more often. It provides teachers with tools and
tips for improving reading.

 Informing/involving parents with data
 Though the data was posted outside the classrooms, there were no evident
ways to involve the parents in the data unless they were physically in the
school. The parents were informed when testing was coming up and they
would know what the students had to do and what they had been doing in
class. The parents just were not as informed on how the school was actually

 Accountability resources
o The teachers are responsible for keeping data on reading and math in the
hallways right outside of the classroom. This helps hold the teachers
accountable and point back to how they want to grow stronger in those
o The principal and super intendant of the district also occasionally walk
around and visit classrooms to observe the teachers during class to see what
they are doing and how they are teaching.

 Support Personal
o The librarian served as a support personnel for reading.
o The representative from AMSTI was a resource as well as support personnel
for the teachers at Robinson in the area of math.
o Robinson has a reading coach.

 Data Meetings
o Teachers attend data meetings with their team of other teachers in their
grade level.

Trace Crossings Data Analysis
A quick glance at the data from Trace Crossings Elementary School immediately
reveals that math is by far the students’ weakest subject. Even among the highest
performing demographic (white students), only 45.8% of fourth graders were at level four
proficiency. More frightening still, only 7.9% of black students and 4.7% of poverty
students at TCES earned level four proficiency. While some educators may credit these
failures to the situational circumstances minority students and children in poverty face,
these statistics in each demographic are still well below the Hoover district and Alabama
state averages. This indicates a school-based problem rather than a demographic trend.
Additionally, a score comparison between the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 school years
indicate a sharp drop among all demographics in math scores; meanwhile, the district and
state scores remained fairly consistent. For example, 42.9% of poverty students achieved
level four math proficiency in 2010-2011, but that number dropped 38.2 percentage points
in one year. Not only do these sharp drops indicate the need for intensive intervention with
poverty and minority students, but for all students at TCES.
While the Trace Crossings students performed significantly better in reading, an
analysis of the AMRT scores reveal areas of both strengths and weaknesses among TCES
fourth graders. Almost three quarters of white students (70.8%) reached level four reading
proficiency, almost equal to the Hoover district average score and exceeding the Alabama
state average. Similarly, non-poverty students also performed almost as well in reading as
other Hoover and Alabama non-poverty students. Sadly, like the math scores, black
students and poverty students performed well below other students in the district and
state. For example, only 16.7% of poverty students reached level four reading proficiency
compared to 40.3% in the Hoover district. Also similar to the math scores, reading scores
fell dramatically for all demographics between the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 school years.
The dramatic math and reading score drops between the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012
school year can probably be partially explained by the rapidly changing demographics in
Hoover city. In 2000, only 3.76% of the population identified themselves as Latino. By
2010, that number had jumped to 6.02% of the population for a 106.08% change. While
the expansion of the Latino population is certainly the most obvious demographic shift in
Hoover, many minority groups have also experienced population growth in the last ten
years. Unfortunately, the Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama (PARCA) does not yet
specifically track data for these ethnic minority groups, so a disaggregated data analysis is
Trace Crossings Action Plan
From our first hand experiences, Trace Crossings’ faculty and staff are actively
involved in creating and implementing an improvement plan to addresses the weaknesses
revealed by the PARCA data. The school employs a math coach, and Mrs. Puchta has fully
embraced her role in improving students’ math performance. She regularly meets with
struggling students and works with teachers to address the needs of specific learners in her
class. Mrs. Puchta also offers general feedback and suggestions for teachers to improve
their teaching after observing the Investigations program math lessons. Apart from direct
math instruction, Mrs. Puchta is intentional about helping the students see math as a
necessary, real-world skill. For example, she puts up fun math displays around the school
that engage the students in math even as they walk down the halls. The school has also
begun hosting math nights to foster the home-school connection, allowing parents to ask
questions about math enrichment and students to “show off” their math learning.
TCES’ efforts are certainly a wonderful start; however, our PLC has identified a few
additional strategies to further the already existing initiatives. In a document entitled
“Improving Math Performance”, the U.S. Department of Education has identified six
common themes found in math curriculums from national Blue Ribbon School award
winners. The six pillars are listed below and guiding force behind the action plan explained
1. Alignment with state frameworks: In order to provide content alignment,
teachers must be aware of and familiar with the new Common Core standards
recently adopted in Alabama. Although resources like the ALEX Insight tool are
certainly invaluable, teachers at TCES would also benefit from targeted professional
development on the new Common Core standards and specific ideas for
implementation. Many such courses are available, but the one provided by is particularly well-designed. Teachers may choose several
different targeted options sorted by grade level, compare old standards with the
new Common Core, and participate in flexible, online professional development. The
updated information will help teachers and administrators ensure that their daily
math instruction will prepare students to meet state expectations.
2. Coherent, focused, demanding programs: Common Core and TCES’ Investigations
program ensures that math curriculums are coherent and challenging for students
across grade levels. However, in order to boost TCES math testing scores, teachers
also need to intentionally prompt and motivate students to use higher math skills
daily in the classroom. Over the course of the summer, the math coach will create
grade level enrichment programs to provide teachers with appropriate math
activities. Activities will range in extensiveness and time commitment. Examples of
such activities include pre-made daily math journal questions, mini-math research
projects, and pre-made games. This school specific program will guarantee that
there is consistency across grade levels, all levels of math learners are addressed,
and any necessary changes can be made quickly.
3. Connections to real world: Establishing real-world connections not only allow
students practice with essential math skills, but also motivates them to persevere in
difficult lessons. TCES already holds a Math Night for parents and students, but this
event should be expanded to maximize its learning potential. Specifically, older
students will set up a “Math Fair”, where they display real-world PBL projects to
Math Night attendees. Research on mathematical education suggests that Math Fairs
and PBL projects benefit students by providing a non-competitive environment for
success, ownership of a project, and insight to difficult concepts. The opportunity for
real-world math connections in combination with the necessary collaboration skills
will only increase students’ math abilities.
4. Year-to-year continuity and 5. Building on prior skills and knowledge:
Activating students’ prior learning is essential for successful math instruction;
therefore, every teacher must understand the content that is taught in the previous
grade as well as the following grade. To provide better year-to-year continuity
between math curriculums, TCES will hold annual meetings before each school year
to explain the math content taught at every grade level. At these meetings, teachers
will also meet with other grade levels to discuss what students already
know/should be prepared for in the next grade. This summit-like event will focus
the teacher’s content and teaching strategies for the school year, prepare her to
activate prior knowledge, and ensure that she emphasizes important concepts for
later math concepts.
6. Use of manipulatives for concept development: Thankfully, the Investigations
program already in place at TCES involves several different types of manipulatives.
Teachers will be expected to perform semester “materials inventory” to make sure
all students have access to the called for program material.

Robinson Data Analysis
At Robinson Elementary School, there have been concerns about student progress
due to the standardized testing and the data that comes from the ARMT testing scores.
Students are still taking the tests for the 2013-2014 school year, but the results from 2010-
2011 and 2011-2012 are accessible and very interesting to study. The population at
Robinson is completely black and poverty, there is no data for white or non-poverty
individuals. Since the demographics are only for students who are black and in poverty,
this makes the scores from this school different than schools that may be a little bit more
diverse. The scores for fourth grade are compared to the district as well as the state level
and one can see the differences between the two years. In reading, the scores of black
students went down 11.2% between the two years. As a whole though, Birmingham city
went up 0.7% and the state stayed the same among the black population of students. In
reading, students in poverty scores went down between the two years again almost 10%
and state went down 0.3%.
Math scores slightly increased between the two years for the black population but it
is better to have them barely increase than to decrease. However, the percentage scores
for the students in poverty actually went down 17.3% from one year to the next. The math
scores for the black population of students remain fairly close to the state average for
2011-2012 because the score at Robinson was 42.3% and statewide 46.7%. Birmingham
City’s average actually fell higher than the state average in this instance because it stood at
48.4%. The weakest point and most drastic decrease between the years were among the
population of students in poverty going from 41.9% to 24.6%. This also made Robinson fall
much further behind than the average for the district, which stood at 46.8%.
Robinson Action Plan
Unless something is done about it, scores will continue to go down in school
districts around the state, specifically Birmingham City in this instance. Math and reading
are very important for a child’s success and future and unless the foundation is firm, then
the student will have a hard time getting out of the hole. Many schools throughout the state
are trying to do something to increase test scores and improve reading and math
instruction in elementary schools. Robinson is taking a few steps towards improvement
and trying to impact students’ scores in both reading and math. The school is becoming
data driven and the teachers post their data for their class outside the classroom so that it
can be seen publically as a reminder of what still needs to be done. There are still many
steps that need to be taken in the positive direction for reading instruction, but there are
some things around the school that have been put into place to try to improve scores. The
school has a reading coach who works with some of the students and teachers and that is a
helpful resource when it is used properly. One step towards intervention that Robinson
has become a part of is the Scholastic’s Read 180 program. This provides grade-level texts
and questions that can follow. This is supposed to be a way to reach college and career
ready standards.
Robinson is trying to emphasize mathematics and help students to find a joy in it.
The school has made initiatives and is trying things like the math derby where students
compete with math facts based on the grade level. AMSTI is another way that Robinson is
trying to do something to create positive change in the field of math. Someone from AMSTI
comes in periodically to classrooms and teaches math lessons to the class. This serves as a
model to the teacher as well as the class.
Reading is an area that Robinson is trying to improve because of the test scores, but
it still has a long way to go to reach success. Although there is a reading coach and small
steps that are being made to implement reading instruction into the school, there are still
many things to be done to raise the 25% on reading for black students in 2011-2012 and
24.6% on the ARMT for students in poverty. One way to improve reading would be
through recreational reading and reading competitions. The school has a library but the
students do not ever check books out from it. The have time to go to the library but do not
read books during that time. If students were encouraged to read books on their levels,
this could progressively grow to become stronger readers and move up on levels. This is
something that students can do without parent involvement but if everyone was to just
read for twenty minutes a day, big changes could happen. Students can log the books that
they read and can write up book commercials for them for their peers and for every 10
books of a certain level students read, they could get a prize or a homework pass. This is
something that could take place in the whole school but the students just need to find a
love for reading and they need to see teachers model that love.
There are several factors that come into play that keep some of the improvement
plans that have been implemented from being truly successful. The levels of poverty
among the students at Robinson Elementary play a big factor in success and improvement
or lack thereof. The socio-economic status of the families and the family life play a factor in
limiting the complete implementing of beneficial improvement plans. As a whole, parents
at Robinson are not as involved in their child’s schooling as some other schools in different
areas. The parents are often doing well to get their children to and from school. They often
have many other things to worry about like where their next paycheck will come from or
putting food on the table that often a child’s schoolwork is the last priority or thought. A lot
of students at Robinson live in single parent homes or with grandparents. There are often
communication issues with the caregiver and the parent regarding if someone had to talk
to the teacher about the child. Parent involvement is an important factor in the ultimate
success of a child. A teacher can work with the child all day but it takes a partnership
between the two to be as successful as possible.
Trace Crossing Parent Letter

Robinson Parent Letter

 Action Plan
 Demographic info
 Data