Uncommon Measures: A Different Kind of Data

Researcher Molly Schen has been working with the Coalition to develop new indicators with which schools might document progress toward implementing Essential School ideas. What follows are some suggestions for these “uncommon measures”:

Who are we?
– Percentage of students from single-parent homes
– Percentage of “latch- key” children
– Extent of student and family mobility
– Demographic history and projections
– Percentage of students from feeder schools with like philosophy
– Extent of K-12 feeder system

What are we doing?
– Teacher-student load
– Per-pupil expenditures on instruction and materials alone
– Percentage of teachers on teams with students in common
– Number of students per team
– Number of common planning periods / week
– Frequency of faculty meetings
– Percentage of students in activities; in community service
– Samples of assessment tasks
– Use of flexible room arrangements
– Classroom observations for higher-order thinking skills, percentage of teacher talk, etc.
– Number of library books checked out per student per year

How are we doing?
– Samples of student work
– Percentage of parents at voluntary events
– Number and types of scholarships awarded
– Satisfaction surveys of students, teachers, parents, principal
– Percentage of students prepared for class with homework & materials
– Follow-up studies of graduates