Instructional Practices Audit

Part of the mission of our strategic plan, Learning for All, states that "Working together as a team, we will end the predictive value of race, class, gender, and special capacities for our children’s success through high-quality teaching and learning for all."

On average, our division outperforms the state of Virginia on a number of achievement measures. However, within our division, we have seen a gap in the achievements of our students of color and economically disadvantaged students.

To ensure that we are doing all we can to help all of our students succeed, ACPS is partnering with Bellwether to complete a third-party instructional audit.

Over 14 weeks, Bellwether will partner with ACPS to complete the audit in three phases:

  • Phase 1: Prepare for Success and Get to Know ACPS (4 weeks)
    • During this phase, Bellwether will work with ACPS to ensure that their team knows the ins and outs of ACPS. This will include data review and engagement with internal stakeholders in ACPS.
  • Phase 2: Assessing the Current State (6 weeks)
    • During the second phase, the Bellwether team will collect and analyze data to assess how the investments in our students and staff, through curriculum and professional development, are supported at the division level and executed at the classroom level. The Bellwether team will then assess the impact of these investments for students, families, principals and other school-based staff.
  • Phase 3: Root Cause Analysis (4 weeks)
    • During the final phase of the audit, Bellwether will identify key themes and trends among our data to identify root causes for persistent achievement gaps and recommend actions we can take to address those causes.

Key Dates

  • October 26, 2022 | Task Force Meeting
  • November 29, 2022 | Task Force Meeting
  • February 22, 2023 | Task Force Meeting
  • March 22, 2023 | Task Force Meeting
  • March 22 and March 23, 2023 | Bellwether In-Classroom Activities
    • Classroom observations, small group interviews with students and staff, and small group interviews with family members
  • April 2023 | Task Force Meeting
  • May 2023 | Task Force Meeting
  • June 8, 2023 | Presentation of recommendations to School Board

About Bellwether

"Bellwether is a national nonprofit focused on dramatically changing education and life outcomes for systemically marginalized young people and their communities. We do this by accelerating the impact of education leaders and organizations, informing and influencing policy and program design, and sharing what we learn.

Bellwether envisions a world in which race, ethnicity, and income no longer predict opportunities and outcomes for students, and the American education system affords all individuals."