We use data as a tool for collaboration, to empower staff to make decisions that benefit students everyday. We help teachers and administrators use student-, classroom- and school-level data to understand what students need both in and outside the classroom. At PWC, data is a light we shine to understand how we can best help students and schools, to understand whether our efforts have been effective and how to shift our focus as needs change. Examining data with teachers and school staff regularly gives everyone a voice and an investment in continuous learning about how to improve student well-being.
Our approach to data is layered. We examine individual case notes and any crisis intervention data daily, and supervisors review caseloads weekly to make sure that we are providing support where it is needed most. Our data team creates school-specific “dashboards” to share with school teams each month.
At our Community Schools we work more broadly with the entire parent population, so we developed a parent survey to ensure we had direct access to parent input. The tool gives parents a means to voice their beliefs about whether the school is welcoming, respectful and safe; whether materials are culturally relevant and engaging, how engaging the school is for students across a variety of areas, the adequacy of communication with families, and much more.
In addition to our collaborative goals, we also try to understand whether we are implementing programs as planned, meeting set goals, providing appropriate assessments, and ensuring that students are engaging with our services. We also utilize standard metrics – attendance, grades and test scores, and promotion data – to ensure that we are helping schools meet these critical benchmarks. We currently use DESSA (Devereux Student Strengths Assessment), a validated measure of teacher perceptions of student growth around social-emotional capacities. We plan to reassess our measurement strategy and the tools we use from the lens of our commitment to equity and anti-racism.
Data from the most recent complete year of in-school classes and services (2018-2019), demonstrates our impact on key measures:
- 92% of our K-8 schools increased their ELA scores within 3 years of partnering with PWC. 75% of our partner schools increased their ELA scores by at least 10 percentage points. 50% have improved by at least 15 percentage points.
- 92% of our K-8 schools increased their math test scores within 3 years of partnering with PWC. 60% of our partner schools increased their math scores by at least 10 percentage points.
- All of our high schools have gains in graduation rates that have outpaced comparison groups identified by the DOE. One of our schools improved its graduation rate by 21 percentage points.
- 98% of K-8 students on the PWC caseload (highest-need students) in SY18-19 were promoted to the next grade for SY19-20.
- 70% of PWC affiliated community schools have outpaced the citywide growth in average daily attendance.
- 83% of community schools have decreased chronic absenteeism by at least 6 percentage points from the time we partnered with them.
- 75% of our chronically absent students increased their attendance from SY1718 to SY1819, with an average gain of 8.5 percentage points. 63% increased their attendance to 90% or above so that they were no longer considered chronically absent.
- PWC caseload students (highest-need students) improved their attendance an average of 5.4 percentage points from SY17-18 to SY18-19.