Board gets data warehouse update

The Independent School District 834 Board was updated on the progress of a new data warehouse designed to personalize student learning during the board’s learning session Thursday.

The data warehouse went live Feb. 4 and was implemented in two months when similar projects normally take about six months, according to Dr. Chris Balow, coordinator of student performance and assessment.

The warehouse allows teachers to see students’ progress throughout their time in the school district. Information includes test scores, anecdotal notes and tips from other teachers, with goal to make learning a more personalized experience for students. The program allows teachers to keep an eye students’ behavior, develop learning intervention plans for students who need it and find solutions. The warehouse saves information gathered throughout a student’s school years in the district.

The system indicates blue for the well-performing students and red for the students with difficulties.

“My fear is that if I’m a teacher and I’ve got a class of all red students, is it going to be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Is there any danger of that,” asked board member George Hoeppner.

“It won’t show up with the colored flags at the start of a new school year and will reset every year except the test scores,” Balow said. “But the history, and notes left by past teachers can be accessed going forward.”

The colors are reset to green (middle-ground) when a new school year starts so students who had past behavioral issues begin with a clean slate in the system each new school year.

Although parents would not have direct access to the system to check in on their child, they have the right to request to look at it, district officials said.

“Teachers will be expected to use it on a regular basis and will have checkpoints throughout the year that they should meet to ensure that students are benefitting as best they can from the new system,” said Mary Anderson, director of elementary schools.

An August data summit will be held with teachers to develop plans about how they can use the system and create intervention plans using collected data.

At Thursday’s business meeting, the board:

  • Heard Anderson and Ryan Laager speak a more about their GATE programming idea.
  • Met new Oak Park Elementary School Principal Nate Cox.
  • Announced that Superintendent Corey Lunn, who has a performance agreement with the district, will be paid $9,730 for completing 66 of the 70 action items he was given by the board this year.
  • Approved a three-year extension of a joint powers food service agreement with Mahtomedi schools.
  • Restated their intent to have an operating levy renewal referendum in November.

Contact Avery Cropp at avery.cropp@ecm-inc.com

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