Transformative Reading Instruction (TRI)
The Third Grade Reading Network uses the results from TRI pilot projects to refine programs and deliver a streamlined model in order to reach the Milwaukee Succeeds goal to become a top performing urban school system by 2020.
Begun in 2014 with 2 schools (see Table 1), the TRI model was developed by the partners involved in Milwaukee Succeeds. Its aim was to take advantage of evidence-based practices to tailor reading instruction to 3rd graders in an effort to increase the number that reach reading proficiency. In the 2015-2016 school year, the program expanded to include an additional 5 schools, bringing the total to 7, and reaching 504 students and 51 teachers.
TRI is a set of practices implemented with the vision of the school principals in order to accommodate a wide variety of student learning needs. The TRI model (see Figure 1) encourages readers by providing intensive evidence-based coaching to K-2nd grade teachers on foundational reading and social emotional skills. Coaching is then aligned with tutoring, parent engagement workshops, and experiential learning opportunities. The model aligns partners in a school around a shared goal of improved outcomes for students. For example, in partnership with Milwaukee Succeeds, Clarke Street School strengthened existing systems in the 2014-15 school year by:
- Wrapping additional support around existing structures
- Increasing the focus on reading foundations by building the capacity of teachers
- Incorporating a social-emotional learning component into professional development
- Aligning these efforts with the existing SPARK 1:1 tutoring and parent engagement programs offered through the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee
“TRI coaching has helped bring out my strengths as a teacher and use them to accelerate student learning. The collaborations and discussions gave me valuable time and space needed to reflect on improving and refining my practice. Our TRI coach was another welcome classroom adult whose presence aided in our culture of learning and collaboration.”
Jon Newcomb, Teacher
Rogers Street School
While all schools take the state-required assessment (i.e. Badger Exam), administered annually, districts also use progress monitoring tools that are administered two or three times per year to track students’ progress in core academic areas. MPS began using the STAR assessment for grades K – high school in 2015-16 (at present, it’s used in some high schools, not all).
The STAR assessment includes categories of significantly below target, well below target, below target, on target, and significantly above target. For the purpose of presentation simplicity, we collapse categories into “below target” and “on or above target.”
Both the charter and choice schools participating in TRI use the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) for progress monitoring. Here, we report data for these assessments to provide some indicator of each school’s progress in reading over the course of the last year.
MAP scores measure students’ growth in reading, beginning with a baseline assessment in the Fall, a Winter assessment measuring progress, and a Spring assessment that measures students’ growth to that point. Here, we report data on the net difference made between Fall and Spring.