Just as policy and procedures development begins at the state level, it makes sense for the state to provide a broad framework for training and communication. These include:
The Massachusetts State Department of Elementary and Secondary Education developed a frequently asked questions website to address such questions as the following:
State data personnel whose responsibilities include collecting, maintaining, and reporting student and staff racial and ethnic data should be trained so that they can:
Vendors are important players in this process. They should be involved in the early stage and be well informed of all the issues and changes in order to accomplish the following:
School district personnel should be made aware of the process early on, with follow-up sessions throughout the implementation process, to help them:
The state could determine the mechanism for training and communication, which may include annual data staff meetings, staff orientations, web-based meetings, teleconferences, an online or telephone help desk, manuals and documentation, or any combination of the above. It is estimated that training needs will be heavy at first, but may be absorbed by regular established venues after the first year of implementation.
|What Do the New Standards Mean to School Districts?
School districts vary in size, organization, and function of the chain of command. The focus on training and communication at the local level would be on implementing local policies and procedures, so that the re-identification process is carried out in the most consistent way to garner accurate data. Some preliminary work in planning and orienting all of the parties involved in these changes will have substantial payoff later on.
Vendors should be involved in early stage of this process, to do the following:
School personnel, specifically the principal or his/her designate, should be made aware of the process early on, especially if observer identification is to be done at the school. Besides the content areas for school district training listed above, districts can provide some “real life” practice as school personnel analyze their current student population, develop scenarios of possible observer misidentification, and anticipate possible data entry errors.