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Lubbock, Texas Charter School Receives National Recognition

Rise Academy has been chosen as one of only two schools in Texas to be recognized with the prestigious National Title 1 Distinguished School Award. Selection for the Distinguished School Award is based on meeting high academic performance criteria and an 85% or higher low-income student population. Information about Rise Academy's educational philosophy will be provided to National Title 1 Association staff so these methods can be shared with other schools to help improve achievement for their students.

Rise Academy utilizes Reading Mastery Signature as its core literacy program in pre k-1. Rise Academy founder and director Richard Baumgartner gives credit to a dedicated staff, and also states, "More than anything else, Reading Mastery is a key to our success." He continues, "This award certainly validates the great progress we have made and motivates us to strive to be even better. With such recognition comes greater responsibility."

NIFDI sends its congratulations and best wishes for continued success!

For more information about Rise Academy visit their website

NIFDI Research Department Releases White Paper on What Works Clearinghouse

The What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) was established by IES to summarize the research evidence on curricular programs. Yet, as many of you know, WWC conclusions often differ dramatically from those found in reviews and meta-analyses in the scholarly literature. As part of our attempt to understand why these differences appeared NIFDI requested, through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), information on concerns others had raised through a "quality review process" regarding WWC procedures and conclusions.

Staff researcher Tim Wood has recently released a NIFDI White Paper that summarizes the concerns expressed in 69 quality reviews. For instance, more than four-fifths of the people and organizations requesting reviews were concerned about misinterpretation of study findings. Over a third were concerned with both the exclusion and inclusion of relevant research. In addition to summarizing these concerns the white paper discusses general issues with accountability with the WWC and the FOIA process and presents a number of important policy recommendations. The full text of the white paper can be found pdf here

There's Still Time To Register for Enhanced Coaching Academy!

Are you wanting to expand your ability to assist others in developing their skill in presenting DI lessons? NIFDI is offering our popular Coaching Academy, Enhanced Coaching and Facilitating Professional Development on March 2 & 3, in Columbus, Ohio. This two-day training, co-sponsored by McGraw-Hill Education, is designed for instructional coaches, peer coaches and others responsible for observing instruction and improving student performance.

If you attended the NIFDI Coaching Academy presented in November, this is a companion academy and not a repeat of the earlier session. Topics include:

  • Communicating with staff in order to increase instructional effectiveness.
  • Refining observational skills to increase the coach's ability to provide data-driven feedback.
  • Determining the appropriate intervention based on data and observation.
  • Utilizing a variety of interventions (in-class coaching, small group practice, 1:1 rehearsal sessions).
  • Designing and delivering efficient on-going professional development sessions.
  • Facilitating Data Analysis Team meetings to find and solve student performance problems in a timely manner.

The low fee of $279 includes lunch each day as well as a binder filled with resources. For a complete brochure and registration information, click here

Enhanced Direct Instruction Coaching Academy Announced!

Are you wanting to expand your ability to assist others in developing their skill in presenting DI lessons? NIFDI is offering our popular Coaching Academy, Enhanced Coaching and Facilitating Professional Development on March 2 & 3, in Columbus, Ohio. This two-day training, co-sponsored by McGraw-Hill Education, features veteran DI trainer Rosella Givens and is designed for instructional coaches, peer coaches and others responsible for observing instruction and improving student performance.

If you attended the NIFDI Coaching Academy presented in November, this is a companion academy and not a repeat of the earlier session. Topics include:

  • Communicating with staff in order to increase instructional effectiveness.
  • Refining observational skills to increase the coach's ability to provide data-driven feedback.
  • Determining the appropriate intervention based on data and observation.
  • Utilizing a variety of interventions (in-class coaching, small group practice, 1:1 rehearsal sessions).
  • Designing and delivering efficient on-going professional development sessions.
  • Facilitating Data Analysis Team meetings to find and solve student performance problems in a timely manner.

The low fee of $279 includes a binder filled with resources as well as lunch each day. For a complete brochure and registration information, click here

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