Through the Data Driven Instruction Initiative (DDII), Big Shoulders Fund supports schools in their efforts to use data to inform instruction, drive policy and investment decisions, and measure progress. The initiative fosters strategic collaboration among teams of educators, allowing them to develop a more robust feedback loop that is fueled by data, coaching and instruction, and outcomes. Schools in the program achieve a purposeful connection between data collection, analysis, lesson and unit planning, and student-centered instructional approaches.
Schools in the DDII also participate in 5Essentials, an evidence-based system designed to drive improvement in schools. It reliably measures changes in a school organization through the 5Essentials Survey and provides individualized, actionable reports for each school. The 5Essentials survey instrument is based on more than 20 years of research conducted by the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research.
The 5Essentials Survey assesses five key effectiveness factors that are correlated with school success: Effective Leaders, Collaborative Teachers, Supportive Environment, Involved Families, and Ambitious Instruction. Those that rate strongly in at least three of the five factors are 10 times more likely to improve student learning and are more likely to:
- Improve student learning and attendance
- Graduate students from high school
- Get students into college
- Retain teachers
- Improve ACT scores