The Atlas Protocol is one of the most commonly used structured dialogue formats among schools to facilitate a conversation about data for teachers and other members of the faculty. Learning from Data is a tool to guide groups of teachers discovering what students, educators, and the public understands and how they are thinking. The tool, developed by Eric Buchovecky, is based in part on the work of the Leadership for Urban Mathematics Project and of the Assessment Communities of Teachers Project. The tool also draws on the work of Steve Seidel and Evangeline Harris-Stefanakis of Project Zero at Harvard University. The protocol gives a detailed step by step guide on how to prepare and conduct a healthy, productive conversation about and with use of data. It starts with a selection of datasets that do not lead to a single conclusion and generally lead to rich conversations. From that point forward, the protocol describes 6 stages the group has to follow with the help of a facilitator in a prescribed timeline. You can find all the details on our LAC Learning Center under ‘Data Conversations’.
(This post is by Megan Brazil, Elementary School Principal, United Nations International School, Hanoi. The post was first published online in 2016.) In a ‘silo schools’ approach, teachers have generally been left to work independently on collecting, understanding and using their own classroom data to make decisions about instruction, planning and assessment. Many schools have not yet made the successful transition from individual to collaborative: to enable teams of teachers to collectively analyze learning data in order to improve learning outcomes for all students. What we know to be true in many schools is that teachers still spend a disproportionate amount of time planning instruction, but don’t place the same emphasis or effort on finding out if the instruction really worked. Perhaps then, less importance has been placed on finding time for teams of teachers, coaches and administrators to take a look at the ‘back end’ — the learning that has taken place as a result of the planni