Case Study: The SchoolWorks MORE System

Teacher Helping Pupils Studying At Desks In Classroom

Chelsea Public Schools is a Boston-area urban school district that serves an 87% Hispanic population of 6,000+ students via a system of ten schools.  SchoolWorks was contracted by the district to provide a variety of targeted supports with the aim of improving overall instructional quality.

The Challenge
  • Elevate student academic performance, as measured by State accountability standards
SchoolWorks Approach
  • Instructional Inventories: Conduct 1-day “Instructional Inventory” site visits annually at all district schools to gain objective insight into instructional quality
  • Implement the SchoolWorks MORE System: Master, Observe, Rate, Elevate to improve instructional quality:
    • Training for Administrators: Facilitate targeted training in the evidence-based practices of high-quality instruction and introduce a data-driven framework for the ongoing advancement of instructional skills via regular school-facilitated classroom observation using SchoolWorks Classroom Visit Tool
    • Professional Development for School Leaders: Provide in-depth modelling and discussion of key indicators (based on observation findings) to help school leaders understand and fully visualize the successful implementation of highly effective practices in the classroom
    • Training for Teachers: Familiarize select teachers with the instructional expectations measured during ongoing observations
The Results
  • The MORE System has helped district leadership at Chelsea Public Schools develop a common understanding of high-quality instruction, establish clearly defined instructional expectations, and monitor and elevate overall instructional capacity district-wide.
  • To date, SchoolWorks has trained and certified more than 105 Chelsea Public Schools administrators and teachers in classroom observation, and provided a process for the ongoing collection and analysis of observation data.
  • Trained and certified Chelsea administrators conduct three rounds of internal observations annually to over 400 classrooms, tracking growth in the use of effective instructional practices with SchoolWorks’ tool.
  • In 2018 Chelsea Public Schools met the State’s growth target for English Language Arts in all grades, and exceeded the target for ELA achievement in grades 3-8.  The District also met and exceeded the State’s achievement target for science in all grades.
  • According to the State’s Next-Generation MCAS assessments, the percentage of Chelsea students in grades 3-8 meeting or exceeding expectations in English Language Arts rose from 23% in 2017 to 29% in 2018, and the percentage of students in grades 3-8 meeting or exceeding expectations in in Math from 26% in 2017 to 28% in 2018.
Dates: 2016 – present


"Our work with SchoolWorks has helped Chelsea administrators and staff establish a common vocabulary and understanding of instructional best practices in order to elevate the conversation about instruction on an actionable, granular level."
- Sarah Kent, Assistant Superintendent of Chelsea Public Schools

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