In the Collaborative Response Model, the collaborative team meeting is critical. When we are asked the questions “what are the first steps to take in establishing the model? Where should we start?”, our answer always comes back to establishing a collaborative team meeting format. However, there are a number of elements of these meetings that need to be in place in order for them to operate efficiently and effectively. Establishing a visual student scoreboard is one of those elements that needs to be created and ready for the first meeting.
The purpose of the student scoreboard is to be the visual focal point, displaying all the students to be discussed at the meeting. Whether the meeting is focused on students at a grade level, division, or other groupings, all the students in that “cohort” are displayed. Essentially, the scoreboard becomes the meeting’s graphic organizer, showing priority for discussion and adjustments to individual student programming. A sample scoreboard has been included in the Resources section of our website.
Some considerations for the creation of your student scoreboards:
What will be the medium?
Whether a poster, tri-fold board or electronic resource , how you display student names is completely up to the school. However, think about this when creating your scoreboards:
- Can student names be easily moved on the board?
- Is the scoreboard transportable? Can it be moved? Can it easily be removed from sight? At a previous school we worked at, the boards were simply folded up and left in the principal’s office until needed again.
- Are the board and student cards able to withstand heavy use?
Some examples that we’ve seen are:
- utilization of the CRMS Software to visually display students, as well as collect ongoing notes, meeting records and much more (visit the CRMS landing page to request additional information)
- tri-fold boards (science fair boards) with laminated student cards, attached with velcro
- student names on magnets placed on a magnetic whiteboard (also allowed for notes to be quickly added)
- posters with library card envelopes
- post-it notes on a board (although consider this a temporary solution, as the post-its will not withstand heavy use)
Color the student cards
Establishing a color code system for the student cards is a great way to indicate to new staff the entry levels of students that are incoming, show progress during the year and provide (at a quick glance) an overall determination of the student group. One color system that we have seen work well is:
- Red – students significantly below grade level
- Yellow – students below grade level
- Green – students at or above grade level
- Blue – students at an enrichment level
- White – students whose level is not determined (new students for which assessment data may not be available)
Students are placed on a colored card at the beginning of the year and stay the same color for the year. Although students may advance (or slip) as the year progresses, keeping their card a consistent color works well to show growth and development. The categories on the board become the method of showing student growth and progress.
How you determine student color is another conversation and a subject for a future posting. What assessment data or collaborative conversation determines what color a student is when they enter? When first starting out, the initial student card colors could be established by a quick conversation, a single assessment or outgoing staff recommendations.
Determine the categories
On the board, the categories you establish can be very simple or complex, based on where you are in the development of your school’s collaborative response model. In its simplest form, the categories could be:
- Maintain – students who are currently experiencing success and on a path to meet expectations at the end of the year
- Watching – students starting to experience difficulty or are transitioning between concern and maintain
- Concern – students who are not likely to meet expectations at the end of the year, if they stay on the same growth pattern
However, as your school evolves, these categories should really reflect the tiers of support identified in your school’s pyramid of intervention. The example below shows this categorization.
During the meetings, student cards can be physically manipulated between these categories, showing the level of support being put in place for the student. As mentioned, in more sophisticated Collaborative Response Models, the categories reflect the tiers of intervention established in the school (as shown in the visual example). The need for student cards to be “movable” becomes apparent at this point. The student scoreboard visually captures the flexibility and responsive programming of the school’s collaborative response model.
Often these boards can progress from grade to grade (in schools where collaborative team meetings occur in grade-level teams) each year, showing the incoming team the level of support each student received at the end of the last school year.
Getting ready to talk about kids
As schools are beginning to prepare for their first collaborative team meetings, it is important to have the student scoreboards ready to go to guide discussion and give a bigger picture of all the students at that particular grade-level, division-level or whatever configuration is used in the school. It is also important to note that all students are represented on the student scoreboards, not just those students determined at-risk or currently receiving intervention support.
Best of luck as you get things established for your first collaborative team meetings! We invite schools to submit photos or examples of their student scoreboards to share!
Adapted from a previous posting – originally published September 18, 2011.