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Please break down the budget for the Career Lattice program. How many employees were in the program last year and how many this year? How many do we project next school year? How are we evaluating the effectiveness of this program? What data demonstrates that this program is having an impact on closing the achievement gap in our high-needs schools?

Question#: 4

ANSWER:

The budget for Career Lattice program is as follows:

Stipend/Salary $300,000
Instructional Materials $150,000

The stipend/salary account covers the cost of the .6 teacher position to coordinate the review of applications and implementation of projects along with the supplements for lead teachers. The instructional materials account covers the costs of implementing approved projects. Currently the following expenses have been incurred for Fiscal Year (FY) 2016:

ITEM NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES AMOUNT TOTAL
Lead teacher supplements for lead teachers in Career Lattice designated positions at Career Lattice designated schools 27 $2,000 each= $54,000
Lead teacher Career Lattice project manager stipends for Career Lattice projects at Career Lattice designated schools 7 $2,000 each= $14,000
Career Lattice projects at Career Lattice designated schools 7 $2,890 (Blair HS)
$100 (Blair HS)
$2,175 (Northwood HS)
$2,550 (White Oak MS)
$2,961.34 (Kemp Mill ES)
$2,730 (Rosemont ES)
$2,700 (Alternative Education Programs)=
$16,106.34

In addition, a .6 teacher FTE ($46,372.20) is allocated for the Career Lattice coordinator who oversees the Career Lattice program.

Total spending to date: $130,479

The projected additional expenses through June 2016 include:

40 Career Lattice supplements $2,000/each $80,000
8 Career Lattice projects $2,000 stipend for project manager
$2,750 average budget
$16,000
$22,000

Projected total additional expenses: $118,000

Total FY 2016 projected spending: $248,479

Details

Career Lattice is a joint Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS)/Montgomery County Education Association (MCEA) program which identifies MCEA unit members as lead teachers through an application process modeled on the National Board certification process. Each applicant submits a 10-minute video of a lesson with four pages of written reflection (component 1), two descriptions of leadership experiences with reflection (four pages total—component 2), a résumé, a rationale statement, and recommendations from the building principal and two colleagues to the Career Lattice Joint Panel—a group of seven principals and seven teachers that meets monthly to review and decide on completed applications. Last year, 120 applications were reviewed, and this year 72 applications have been reviewed thus far.

Forty lead teachers were identified last year and 23 more have been added as of January 2016. Of the 63 lead teachers, 55 work at the 72 Career Lattice designated schools—43 elementary schools, 18 middle schools, 10 high schools, and Alternative Education Programs—that are the highest-need schools in MCPS. Twenty-seven of the lead teachers are receiving a $2,000 supplement for being in leadership positions at these schools. This aspect of the program is intended to attract and retain outstanding teachers to these schools and entice them to take on leadership roles. Eleven of the lead teachers are African American and five are Latino, which is 25 percent of the total. Thirteen are male and 50 are female.

It is anticipated that an additional 60 lead teachers will be identified this year. Of these, we anticipate 40 will be eligible for the supplement. Two support sessions for the 750 National Board-Certified Teachers (NBCTs) in MCPS are being held in February to encourage them to seek lead-teacher status. These teachers are exempted from component 1 due to their NBCT status, so their application process could be completed at these sessions. Next year, the goal is to add 250 more lead teachers.

In addition, seven lead teachers are currently running projects at Blair High School (2), Northwood High School, White Oak Middle School, Kemp Mill and Rosemont elementary schools, and Alternative Education Programs. Four projects ran last year, including one each at Blair and Northwood high schools which are continuing this year. These lead teachers are paid a stipend of $1,000–$2,000 to manage these projects based on the number of hours required. Each Career Lattice project manager submits a budget request of $1,000–$3,000 as part of the application process to fund materials, personnel, and other costs of the project. The projects are developed jointly by the lead teacher, the principal, and the leadership team of the school to address identified needs of the students, staff, and/or the community. Each project application includes a data gathering and evaluation plan to measure the project’s effectiveness and improve the project as it is being implemented.

A total of $16,106.34 has been allocated for the seven projects this year. An additional $14,000 will be paid in stipends to the lead teacher project managers at the end of the school year. The projects cover a variety of activities, but each is required to be tied to the school’s School Improvement Plan and must have an equity component. At Northwood High School, the lead teacher and several colleagues are running a support program for seniors in the Humanities, Arts, and Media Academy to complete Capstone projects. The number of seniors who completed these projects doubled in the first year. At Rosemont Elementary School, the lead teacher is running an after-school mentoring network for new and less experienced teachers and paraeducators to improve their instructional capacity, improve their equitable practices, and maintain high morale. Each lead teacher project manager meets with the leadership team monthly to report on and evaluate the project. An end-of-year report with the data, reflection on the project, and ideas for improvement is submitted to the leadership team and the Career Lattice Project Panel which meets monthly to review project applications and monitor their progress.

The success of the Career Lattice as a whole is and will be measured by the success of the students at each of the Career Lattice designated schools, as well as by the attraction and retention of outstanding teachers at high-needs schools over time. It is being used by principals as a recruiting tool during the transfer and hiring process, and lead teachers are seeking placement at the Career Lattice designated schools in order to access the position supplement or project manager aspects of the program.

Finally, the Career Lattice is managed by a .6 coordinator who:

  • Runs the application process for lead-teacher status and project applications;
  • Engages in outreach to the Career Lattice designated schools (25 visits have occurred this year) and to resource teacher meetings, principal PLCs, and minority educator professional associations;
  • Communicates with all lead-teacher applicants and prospective applicants;
  • Updates and works with the Professional Growth System implementation teams; and
  • Meets with the lead teachers to establish a lead teacher support network to aid in the design of school-based and systemwide Career Lattice projects.

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