Evaluation of the Early Literacy Specialist (ELS) Coach Initiative in District Elementary Schools
About the Initiative
Early Literacy Specialist (ELS) coaches support students by promoting and supporting the implementation of research-based teaching practices for literacy; improving K-3 teacher content knowledge, instructional practices, classroom environments and classroom structure; and providing content- focused coaching and resources.
During the 2015-16 school year, 40 elementary schools (cohort 1), serving approximately 14,000 K-3 students, received a literacy coach. In the 2016-17 school year, an additional 53 schools (cohort 2), serving 15,400 K-3 students, received a literacy coach. In the 2017-18 school year, the remaining 57 schools (cohort 3), serving approximately 18,500 students, received a literacy coach.
About the Evaluation
The Office of Research and Evaluation (ORE) is conducting a four year evaluation of the implementation and outcomes of the Early Literacy Specialist Initiative. The evaluation instruments include satisfaction and implementation surveys of principals, teachers, and ELS coaches; teacher focus groups; coach activity logs; school level literacy block implementation data; and a longitudinal analysis of student outcomes.
Research questions include:
- Was ELS coaching implemented as intended?
- What were the primary successes and challenges of implementing coaching in a large urban school district?
- Were coaches, teachers, and principals satisfied with the ELS coaching initiative?
- What do teachers and principals perceive to be the benefits of coaching?
- In what ways did schools improve their literacy instruction as a result of coaching?
- In what ways did student outcomes change?
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