As a former LPAC facilitator and ESL teacher for newcomers, I recall always loving the first semester of the school year. As the fall semester came to an end, though, a creeping sense of dread overcame my bliss. I knew that once the 2nd semester began, an epic battle of cat and mouse would ensue as I attempted to chase down teachers to collect their feedback on linguistic accommodations for STAAR assessments.
I attacked each day with a mental game plan. A typical day would include:
- teaching for half the day
- working one-on-one with teachers during a PLC meeting to discuss what linguistic accommodations their students used on a regular basis
- checking my mailbox for completed accommodation forms
- e-mailing teachers with clarifying questions about their responses
- hunting down colleagues in the copy room, gym, computer lab, and front office to redo forms they had completed incorrectly
More than one teacher admitted to turning the corner as soon as they saw me approach with my binder of STAAR Participation and Linguistic Accommodation Decisions forms!
My experience was not unusual. As an Ellevation trainer, I’ve heard the same anxiety from district professionals across the state. In these discussions, I often hear a common question:
“We love that Ellevation makes it so easy to document teachers’ recommendations for linguistic accommodations for the LPAC to approve. But what we really need is an easier, more efficient way to collect their recommendations. Can you help?”
As a team member of an organization committed to streamlining your high-anxiety, migraine-inducing processes, I’m happy to say, “Why, yes, yes we can.”
We offer Ellevation InClass, a companion to the primary Ellevation platform, but designed for classroom teachers. InClass gives classroom teachers valuable, easy to understand, up-to-date information on the ELLs in their classrooms, including proficiency levels, descriptors, program assignments, and historical assessment results. In addition, InClass shows classroom teachers the accommodations, language goals, and notes that the ELL team has entered for students in the Ellevation platform.
But better yet, InClass allows information to flow from the classroom back to the ESL/Bilingual specialist or administrator! What’s an example of information that needs to get from the classroom teacher to those holding an LPAC? You guessed it: STAAR Accommodation Decision forms!
|Automatically Assign||STAAR Accommodation Decision forms are automatically assigned, weeks before they are due, to classroom teachers based on student schedule information in Ellevation.|
|Complete Forms Online||Classroom teachers fill out STAAR Participation and Accommodation Decision, entirely online, via Ellevation InClass.|
|Track Frequency||Classroom teachers can note the frequency with which accommodations are used in the classroom. No more mistaken accommodation decisions in LPACs when a student “occasionally but rarely” uses extra time on assessments!|
|Reference Progress||LPAC users can reference a dashboard to see which teachers have completed their forms and which forms are outstanding. We even offer easy "reminder tools” for a friendly nudge.|
|View Completed Forms||LPAC users will automatically see completed STAAR Accommodation forms for any given student while holding their Assessment LPAC. Now, making determinations of testing accommodations is fully informed from those who know the student best!|
When cumbersome processes are moved online with full accountability and visibility, educators can focus less on hunting down pieces of paper and more on student instruction. Ellevation InClass, combined with the STAAR Testing Accommodation Recommendation feature, lets educators and LPAC coordinators focus on what they do best and leaves the hassle of paperwork to technology to solve!
Looking for more collaboration tips? Check out this LPAC meeting tip list compiled from our team of former Texas ESL Teachers and LPAC Facilitators.