Study Design: This design reflects research moving from informed theory to informed practice. Working from goals based on theoretical constructs as to professional development and support of teachers in the classroom, VMP staff and site leadership identify implementation strategies that reflect priorities and practices at the school level and support the goals.
Evaluation of the efficacy of this design utilizes a two-tiered, mixed methods evaluation plan guided by the project goals and logic model.
Sources of teacher (Tier 1) impact data include the following:
Classroom observation data
Pre-post tests of teacher pedagogical content knowledge, based on the Learning Mathematics for Teaching (LMT) materials development at the University of Michigan
Inventory of prior and current professional development
Data gathered in site-based focus groups
Data from administrator interviews
Sources of student impact data (Tier 2) include the following
Student performance on the New England Common Assessment Project (NECAP) for the two years that NECAP has been utilized as the statewide assessment in Vermont (plans are in place to add a value added analysis once a third data point is available in 2007-08).
Results of VMP schools are compared to state results for all students and for subgroups based on poverty and special education eligibility (the two equity areas of most concern in Vermont).
Evaluators also compare NECAP results at VMP sites with matched districts (matched on size, income, demographics, and comparable performance on the New Standards Reference Exam (the statewide test prior to NECAP) (See Tables 1 and 2).
Data from focus groups, interviews, and staff and participant logs were analyzed using NVivo to identify common themes through triangulation.
Classroom observation data was collected using the Vermont Classroom Observation Tool and analyzed in terms of teacher performance on eight measures and student performance on five measures.
Student performance results were analyzed in terms of the proportion of students performing at the Proficient Level or above.
Results for VMP schools were compared to the State of Vermont as a whole and to schools in matched districts. Results were disaggregated for socio-economic status and for performance of students with IEP's.