Traverse City Record-Eagle

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March 13, 2014

TCAPS board retreat on tap today from 1 to 5 p.m.

TRAVERSE CITY — Traverse City Area Public Schools board members hope to have a deeper understanding of the district’s school improvement model and an employee evaluation pilot program by the end of their quarterly board retreat today.

The retreat is open to the public and will run from 1 to 5 p.m. at Traverse City East Middle School, 1776 Three Mile Road. The retreat will not be televised.

TCAPS Superintendent Stephen Cousins and Chief of Schools Sander Scott will give the board a presentation on Instructional Rounds, the school improvement model the district has been using for the last four years.

“It’s the main focus of our professional development for our teaching staff and professional staff,” board President Kelly Hall said. “The board wanted more information for our own education.”

Cousins said the presentation’s point is to keep board members up-to-date on the program’s process and to discuss how the district can improve within the model.

“In Instructional Rounds the (school) identifies a problem they want to address. Then they invite other teachers and principals into their building while they’re working to give them feedback,” Cousins said.

The district holds those visits two to three times a year at various buildings, Cousins said. He wants to look at how the district can improve its model for teachers.

The board also will hear about an employee evaluation rubric called the Marzano Evaluation, which is in the pilot stage throughout the district. It is used with both administration and teaching staff, and TCAPS plans to fully implement it next year, Cousins said.

“Most of our region in the north is moving toward using the Marzano model. The Intermediate School District is helping us with it,” Cousins said. “Because there’s such good research behind the model, we decided to switch.”

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