October 3, 2018

PD Solutions

Marzano Center Essentials for Achieving Rigor

Students are already beginning to take end-of-year assessments aligned to the new college and career readiness standards, but they aren’t doing as well as states might hope.

As the data rolls in, states like New York, North Carolina, Maryland, Kentucky, and others are reporting sharp drops in achievement – some as much as 50% on English and Math scores. ELL and special needs students, and other urban subpopulations, have been particularly hard hit.

A call for a critical instructional shift.

Data analyzed by Learning Sciences researchers – more than 2 million data points related to classroom strategies collected from teacher observations – indicates that teachers are spending so little classroom time on activities associated with cognitively complex lessons that it will be very difficult for students to succeed on the new assessments.

We must support our teachers.

Standards experts agree that teachers need guidance, support, coaching, and essential tools to make the critical instructional shifts for new standards. Teachers need a safe, evaluation-free zone in which to practice and hone the skills that will truly serve their students in a rigorous environment.

Teaching for Rigor: A Call for a Critical Instructional Shift

by Robert J. Marzano and Michael D. Toth

Early reports reveal that student scores are dropping on assessments aligned to rigorous state standards. Experts worry that the achievement gap may be widening. And data analyzed by Learning Sciences Marzano Center indicates that teachers are spending less than 6% of classroom lessons teaching the cognitively complex skills students need to succeed.

This white paper looks at:

  • Numbers from the largest available database of classroom observations, and the striking conclusions experts draw from more than 2 million data points
  • A new, focused instructional model of 13 essential classroom strategies to support the demanding instructional shifts needed for teachers to reach true rigor
  • The critical need for teachers to move from teacher-centered to student-centered pedagogy
  • A call for a new standard of professional development to support these shifts

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