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 Planning with the End in Mind

Just Read, Florida! Technical Assistance

Background

Reading has been declared a critical teacher shortage area in Florida. To increase instructional capacity for high quality reading instruction, Governor Bush recommended implementation of a reading endorsement, and the Board of Education approved a new K-12 reading endorsement certification last summer. Since then, competencies for the reading endorsement have been developed with the expectation that districts will plan for and provide opportunities for their participants to earn the K-12 reading endorsement in a District Add-on Certification Program.

This Just Read, Florida! Technical Assistance Planning Document has been developed to assist districts in appropriate planning and successful development of their District Reading Endorsement Add-on Certification Program. As additional resources for guidance in planning and development, both the reading endorsement competencies and the Add-on Certification Manual can be located at the Web addresses listed below.

Considerations

There are several key items and questions for consideration as district staff members develop master plans for their Reading Endorsement Add-on Certification Program. Primarily, it is important to keep in mind that the reading endorsement is unique and is a competency-based endorsement certification. Also, there are a total of six competencies, the last of which is a supervised practicum. Each of the competencies build upon one another, and program participants will need to demonstrate capability in each in order to have adequate preparation for the sixth and last competency.

The text rule for competency 6 states the purpose of the supervised practicum:

to obtain practical experience in increasing the reading performance of a student(s) with the prescription and utilization of appropriate strategies and materials based upon scientifically based reading research to address the prevention, identification, and remediation of reading difficulties.

The Supervised Practicum

With this end in mind, district personnel will need to carefully plan to accommodate the needs of participants in satisfying competency 6. Discussions and decisions will need to be made regarding the location of resources and the identification of processes. The Professional Development State Categorical funds earmarked to support reading could be utilized to support the effective execution of the supervised practicum. For example, staff needed to supervise the competency 6 practicum could be supported with these categorical funds. Also, substitute coverage to support teacher planning or completion of the practicum is an allowable expenditure with these categorical funds.

The supervised practicum of competency 6 can be defined as a clinical experience. Participants are expected to work with students and to produce evidence in developing reading proficiency. So what, specifically, must participants know and be able to do in order to be adequately prepared for the supervised practicum? The competency specific indicators -- which serve as specific objectives* for professional development components -- provide insight. Specific indicators for competency 6 are listed below:

6.1 Applies knowledge of language development, literacy development, and assessment to instructional practices

6.2 Demonstrate knowledge of research-based instructional practices for developing students’ phonemic awareness

6.3 Demonstrate knowledge of research-based instructional practices for developing phonics skills and word recognition

6.4 Demonstrate knowledge of research-based instructional practices for developing reading fluency, automaticity, and reading endurance.

6.5 Demonstrate knowledge of research-based practices for developing both general and specialized content area vocabulary

6.6 Demonstrate knowledge of research-based instructional practices for developing reading comprehension

6.7 Demonstrate knowledge of instruction to facilitate students’ metacognitive efficiency in reading

6.8 Demonstrate knowledge of research-based instructional practices for developing critical thinking and content area reading skills

6.9 Demonstrate knowledge of goal setting and monitoring student progress with appropriate instructional application that promotes increases in student learning trends in reading over time

6.10 Demonstrate knowledge of differentiated instruction for all students in mainstream classes, including students with disabilities in reading, and LEP students

6.11 Demonstrate instructional skill in working with LEP students that are at different levels of oral proficiency

6.12 Demonstrate knowledge of creating both language-rich and print-rich environments

There are certain activities in which program participants will need to engage to meet these objectives. The following activities will need to be included in a clinical experience:

  • Working with students from among diverse groups of elementary and secondary readers:
    • students reading at grade level
    • AIP students
    • ESE inclusion students
    • LEP students
  • Assessment of student(s) to generate comprehensive student reading profiles.
  • Analysis of data
  • Applications of appropriate instructional practices and resources to meet reading needs of students
  • Tracking student reading development over time
  • Use of differentiated reading instruction to meet needs of students with varying reading needs

* Specific objectives: See Add-on Manual, page 16-17

Under the supervision of someone with expertise specifically in reading, program participants are expected to provide evidence of impacting the reading proficiency of students with varying reading ability. It is recommended that the district plan to develop and implement specific activities* with this end in mind to make sure that participants are adequately prepared to meet the expectations of this culminating competency.

Resource Planning

To plan effectively, it is necessary for district and school administrators to take inventory of resources that are currently available. In the event that some of the resources are not accessible, it will be important for the planning team to discuss how the following resources can be either mobilized or obtained for participants to use in order to demonstrate accomplishment in increasing student reading performance and satisfy the requirements.

  1. Supervision for the Practicum
    1. Who in your district or your region could be available to serve as a practicum supervisor?
    2. What are their qualifications in reading?
    3. What are their qualifications in supervision? (i.e., completed clinical educator training)
    4. What is their availability, and for what duration of time?
    5. Is there a local agency, university, or community college that could provide support for competency 6?
  2. District and School Instructional Resources
    1. Is there a comprehensive core reading program available for participants to provide explicit, systematic instruction and scaffold student reading development?
    2. Are there a variety of on-site supplementary resources and text materials available for participants to use to differentiate instruction in each of the following reading components:
      • Phonemic awareness
      • Phonics
      • Fluency
      • Vocabulary
      • Comprehension
    3. Is there an on-site print-rich environment with a variety of on-site resources and text materials in order for participants to assign reading:
      • At different independent student reading levels
      • For a variety of purposes
      • That accommodates diverse student interests
      • That accommodates diverse language needs for diverse populations
  3. District and School Assessment Structure
    1. Are there a variety of on-site instructional reading assessments available for teacher training and use and serve the following purposes:
      • Screening
      • Diagnostic
      • Progress monitoring

      * Specific activities: See Add-on Manual, pages 16-17

    2. Does the diagnostic assessment(s) identify strengths and weaknesses in each of the following areas to fully infor instruction:
      • Phonemic awareness
      • Phonics
      • Fluency
      • Vocabulary
      • Comprehension
    3. Which of the following areas do the screening and progress monitoring assessments or procedures address:
      • Phonemic awareness
      • Phonics
      • Fluency
      • Vocabulary
      • Comprehension
    4. Do participants have access to training in administration, interpretation, and analysis of outcome measures?
    5. Does the assessment structure include both quantitative and qualitative measures?
    6. Do the quantitative measures meet standards for reliability and validity?
    7. Do the qualitative measures meet standards for reliability and validity?

Concerning all of these topics, districts need to consider this key question regarding resources.

Is a sufficient inventory of resources for reading in place to accommodate successful field and clinical experiences?

Process Planning

In keeping with the National Staff Development Standards and Florida’s Professional Development Standards regarding content, planning, and delivery, the reading endorsement competencies provide a means for participants to develop capacity for problem-solving instruction. Specifically, in competencies 1 through 3, participants will gain reading CONTENTknowledge, and then will engage in building the PROCESSof problem-solving reading instruction in competencies 4 through 6. Also, in competency 6 participants demonstrate accomplishment in the CONTEXT of their school site as they increase student reading proficiency in the supervised practicum.

To adequately prepare participants and to ensure a successful clinical experience, it will be important to scaffold participants from the foundational competencies, throughout the application competencies, and toward the supervised practicum of competency 6. For example, districts can develop master plans that successively build inservice opportunities for participants to earn a specified number of inservice points by:

  • Participating as members of learning communities (i.e., competency 1)
  • Engaging in investigation of practice into student strengths and weaknesses in reading development (i.e., competencies 2 and 3)
  • Contributing toward collaborative action research (i.e., competencies 4 and 5)
  • Demonstrating accomplishment in building student reading proficiency (specifically, competency 6)

If a district adopts this scaffolded approach across the competencies, it will be important to plan the learner activities, learner outcomes, and inservice points* that correspond with each competency and inservice training appropriately. This can include any follow-up activities that coordinate with prior training.

For those in search of a guide in developing their reading add-on programs with the scaffolded approach described above, the chart below provides an example of approximated inservice points assigned for knowledge acquisition and investigation of practice for student reading development with problem-solving practices and instruction. Inservice points for such activities are designated by a range of time per competency with a suggested proportion between knowledge acquisition activities and field experiences.

Table 1: Suggested Proportion of Inservice Activities

Competency # Title of Competency** Total Inservice Points Range of Points Available for Knowledge Acquisition Range of Points for Investigative Activities into Student Reading Development
1 Foundation of Language & Cognition 60 points 48-52 points Learning Communities
8-12 points
2 Foundations of
Research-Based Practices
60 points 48-52 points Investigation of Practice
8-12 points
3 Foundations of Assessment 60 points 48-50 points Investigation of Practice
10-12 points
4 Foundations of Differentiation 30 points 18-20 points Collaborative Action Research
10-12 points
5 Application of Differentiation 30 points 15-18 points Collaborative Action Research
12-15 points
6 Demonstration of Accomplishment 60 points   60 Clinical clock hours can include:
  • Contact time with students
  • Preparatory time
  • Feedback from supervisor
  • Self reflection
  • Clinical cohort activities
  • * Inservice points:See Add-on Manual, page 16
    **Competency titles serve as instructional strands in the add-on program; See Add-on Manual, page 15

    In considering each of these topics, the following key question is presented for districts to determine regarding processes for professional development.

    What is the established proportion of inservice between knowledge acquisition activities and field experiences in reading per competency to effectively prepare participants for the practicum?

    Planning Across the Competencies

    Development of a reading endorsement add-on program will entail planning for professional development that thoroughly addresses Content, Process, and Context.

    Content:

    Participants will have adequate time and opportunities to grasp the comprehensive knowledge base in reading if they also have adequate time and opportunity for application and analysis.

    Processs:

    A participant that has participated in active learning communities, field experiences, conducted case studies, and engaged in collaborative action research that is focused upon each corresponding competency will be better prepared for an independent clinical experience than a teacher that faces the supervised practicum without prior problem-solving experiences.

    Context:

    There must be quality research-based sources for professional development in both context and processes that are specific to reading as well as adequate resources for participants engage in investigative activities that over time lead to action research and the supervised practicum.

    Districts can successfully plan across the competencies with access to quality materials to guide them in both the development and implementation of quality inservice and field experiences. Resources such as those listed below support an investigative approach and can serve as guidance in program development.

    • International Reading Association (2003). Prepared to Make a Difference: An Executive Summary of the National Commission on Excellence in Elementary Teacher Preparation & Guidance for Strategic Planning.
    • Journal of the National Staff Development Council (Spring 2003). Issue topic: Literacy: What it takes to teach it today. vol. 24, no. 2.
    • Sagor, Richard. (1992) How to Conduct Collaborative Action Research. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. ISBN 0-87120-201-8
    • Stanovich, P. & Stanovich, K. (2003). Using Research and Reason in Education: How Participants can Use Scientifically Based Research to Make Curricular & Instructional Decisions. Partnership for Reading. Phone 800-228-8813
    • Tomlinson, Carol Ann. (1995). How to Differentiate Instruction in Mixed-Ability Classrooms. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. ISBN 0-87120-245-X

    To begin discussions for planning and development of a scaffolded approach, the table below entitled Planning for the Supervised Practicum is provided with specific questions. All of the questions in the table need careful consideration and deliberation. It is important to include the resulting information as part of the district add-on program for the reading endorsement.

    (The table is divided into two sections identified as Table 2A and 2B.)

    Table 2A: Planning for the Supervised Practicum

    Planning Topics Comp 1 Comp 2 Comp 3 Comp 4 Comp 5 Comp 6
    On-site Resources Language Structure/Function & Cognition Research-Based Instruction Instructional Assessments Foundations of Differentiation Application of Differentiation Clinical Activities of Supervised Practicum
    Supervision* Who has expertise in language structure/function & cognition?

    Who will facilitate the learning communities & field experiences?

    Who in the district is responsible for determining competency?
    Who has expertise in scientifically based reading research?

    Who will determine assignments for tutoring & field experiences?

    Who will facilitate investigative activities?

    Who in the district is responsible for determining competency?
    Who has expertise in instructional reading assessments?

    Who will determine assignments for assessment field experiences?

    Who will facilitate investigative activities?

    Who in the district is responsible for determining competency?
    Who has expertise in differentiating reading instruction?

    Who will determine assignments for tutoring & field experiences?

    Who will facilitate collaborative action research?

    Who in the district is responsible for determining competency?
    Who has expertise in differentiating reading instruction?

    Who will determine assignments for tutoring & field experiences?

    Who will facilitate collaborative action research?

    Who in the district is responsible for determining competency?
    Who in the district with supervisory reading expertise is qualified to serve as a practicum supervisor?

    Who will determine assignments for clinical experience of the supervised practicum?

    Is there a local agency, university, or community college that could support supervision?
    Core & Text Materials A comprehensive core reading program available?

    Supplementary resources and text materials available?
    A comprehensive core reading program available?

    Supplementary resources and text materials available?

    A print-rich environment?
    A comprehensive core reading program available?

    Supplementary resources and text materials available?
    A comprehensive core reading program available?

    Supplementary resources and text materials available?
    A comprehensive core reading program available?

    Supplementary resources and text materials available to differentiate instruction?

    A print-rich environment?
    A comprehensive core reading program available?

    Supplementary resources and text materials available to differentiate instruction?

    A print-rich environment?
    Assessment Structure     A comprehensive set of instructional reading assessments available?

    Are they reliable & valid?
    A comprehensive set of instructional reading assessments available?

    Are they reliable & valid?
    A comprehensive set of instructional reading assessments available?

    Are they reliable & valid?
    A comprehensive set of instructional reading assessments available?

    Are they reliable & valid?

    * Supervision: See Add-on Manual, page 19

    Table 2B: Planning for the Supervised Practicum

    Planning Topics Comp 1 Comp 2 Comp 3 Comp 4 Comp 5 Comp 6
    Process Language Structure/Function & Cognition Research-Based Instruction Instructional Assessments Foundations of Differentiation Application of Differentiation Clinical Activities of Supervised Practicum:
    Knowledge Acquisition

    Learning Communities
    1) What sources for PD in language structure/function & cognition?
    2) What resources & activities to support training?
    3) What criteria?
            Assess student(s) of differing reading profiles
    Knowledge Acquisition

    Investigative Activities
      1) What sources for PD in research-based instruction?
    2) What resources & activities for investigative activities to support training?
    3) What criteria?
          Data analysis
    Knowledge Acquisition

    Investigative Activities
        1) What sources for PD in reliable & valid instructional assessments?
    2) What resources & activities for investigative activities to support training?
    3) What criteria?
        Apply results to instruction
    Knowledge Acquisition

    Collaborative Action Research
          1) What sources for PD in differentiated reading instruction?
    2) What resources & activities for PD in action research to expand training?
    3) What criteria?
      Track student development over time
    Knowledge Acquisition

    Collaborative Action Research
            1) What sources for PD in differentiated reading instruction?
    2) What resources & activities for PD in action research to expand training?
    3) What criteria?
    Apply differentiated reading instruction

    As indicated in the table above, it is important that the district reading endorsement add-on program indicate the methods for demonstrating competency* and establish criteria** for participant demonstrationacross the competencies. Table 3 on the next page is a planning sheet that relates to Section IV (Instructional Design & Delivery) of the Add-on Manual.

    ** Establish criteria: See Add-on Manual, page 18 - 20

    Table 3: Competency Demonstration

    Section IV: Instructional Design and Delivery *
    Competency Examples for Method of Demonstration Criteria for Demonstration **
    1
  • Skill demonstration in all 5 major reading components
  • Clinical interview portfolio
  • Investigative activities
  • Project: question mapping
  • Article summary
  • Analysis paper
  • Test
  • Criteria needs to be:
  • Identified
  • Measurable
  • Part of the evaluation plan
  • 2
  • Skill demonstration in all 5 major reading components
  • Article summary
  • Product: comprehensive lesson plans
  • Field experience log: student tutoring in reading
  • Reflective paper
  • Test
  • 3
  • Skill demonstration in assessment administration
  • Written interpretation of student assessment results
  • Article summary
  • Portfolio of clinical interviews & case study
  • Data analysis of student reading trends
  • Field experience log: student tutoring in reading
  • Test
  • 4
  • Article summary of LEP, ESE, and general education student reading needs
  • Product: differentiated instruction lesson plans
  • Field experience log: student tutoring in reading
  • Test
  • 5
  • Portfolio of case studies of LEP, ESE, and general education student reading performance
  • Education plan based on data analysis of case studies
  • Field experience log: student tutoring in reading
  • Differentiated instruction demonstration
  • Paper of investigative activities
  • 6 Supervised clinical experience with clinical portfolio with each of the following:
  • Working with students from among diverse groups
  • Assessment of student(s) to generate comprehensive student reading profiles.
  • Analysis of data
  • Case studies of student reading development
  • Education plans based on data analysis of case studies
  • Tracking trends in student reading development
  • Applications of appropriate instructional practices and resources to meet student reading needs
  • Use of differentiated reading instruction to meet needs of students with varying reading needs
  • Supervised Practicum: It is important for districts to establish criteria for evidence of reading progress (ERP)
    It needs to be:
  • Identified
  • Measurable
  • Part of the evaluation plan
  • * Instructional Design & Delivery: See Add-on Manual, pages 15-19
    ** Criteria for competency demonstration: See Add-on Evaluation Form: Add-on Manual, pages 26-33

    The following is a key question for districts to determine for planning across the competencies.

    What specific inservice for knowledge acquisition and what variety of field experiences for reading will be provided across the competencies?

    In Conclusion

    Throughout Florida, there has been much support for reading. The K-12 reading endorsement add-on certification is a means to increase instructional capacity for high quality reading instruction at both the elementary and secondary levels. Over the past school year, several professional development offerings sponsored by the Just Read, Florida! Office have occurred across the state. If applicable to a district, a district can include this professional development as part of their add-on submission to the Department.

    Finally, submission of district reading endorsement add-on programs to the Department is now possible through the Reading Endorsement Add-on Web tool (READd-on). Districts may submit a partial add-on plan on the Web tool prior to completion for conditional program approval. As district add-on plans undergo further development, the district submission can be updated at any time. However, once the district reading endorsement add-on proposal is complete and has received district school board approval, a hardcopy of the approved final plan with an original signature of Superintendent approval must be submitted for final program approval.