Technical Assistance in Indiana: Year 5

Overview of Planned Work

Great Lakes Comprehensive Center (GLCC) implemented a new process for technical assistance planning for Year 5. Rather than developing a plan designed around the requests from MDE office directors and deputy superintendents, the Michigan state manager and project leads reviewed MDE goals and strategies, Year 4 projects, and proposed projects for Year 5. GLCC leadership reviewed the proposals using a newly developed technical assistance selection criteria checklist (Appendix A). Following the review, four project proposals with strong potential to advance MDE goals and strategies were presented to MDE’s Chief Deputy Superintendent for approval. Two projects are multiyear initiatives that will be completed in Year 5. Year 5 project summaries are provided next.

Project 1: Strategic Partnerships

To maximize the impact of technical assistance and minimize duplication of services, GLCC will serve as a relationship and technical assistance broker to facilitate coordination, alignment, and leveraging of resources provided by the wide range of technical assistance providers working with MDE. Such necessary coordination will support the achievement of MDE’s goal to develop an innovative and cohesive state education agency (SEA) that supports an aligned, coherent education system at all levels. It will also ensure that for key Michigan initiatives, each technical assistance provider will be tasked with respective, appropriate responsibilities.

Project 2: Early Warning System Supports

MDE is strengthening its accountability systems to identify students falling behind, so that resources can be directed to helping them and their schools to improve. GLCC will work with the College and Career Readiness and Success Center (CCRS Center) and MDE to develop a Michigan process for analyzing data retrieved from Michigan’s new Early Warning System tool, identifying interventions and monitoring supports for students identified as at risk. GLCC and MDE will design a series of professional development opportunities for educators at the state level to support local districts and schools in the implementation of an early warning intervention and monitoring system process.

Project 3: Social and Emotional Learning

Through this continuing project, GLCC is assisting MDE to reduce barriers to learning by developing Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) standards, an integration framework, and implementation guidance. GLCC partners with the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders (GTL Center) and the Collaborative for Academic and Social Emotional Learning (CASEL) to help MDE develop a framework and guidance for local education agencies (LEAs) that integrates SEL into existing initiatives. By developing statewide SEL standards, MDE will be positioned to lead intermediate school districts (ISDs) and LEAs in successfully supporting students to graduate ready for careers, college, and community.

Project 4: English Learners with Suspected Disabilities

In Year 4, GLCC worked with MDE and other English learner (EL) experts around the state to codevelop Michigan’s Guidance Handbook for Educators of English Learners with Suspected Disabilities (MDE, 2016a). Collaboration will continue in Year 5 to create professional development modules that will be used to train trainers on the use of the handbook.