This fall, over 50 administrators from the North East Florida Educational Consortium member and participating districts participated in a pilot of a blended professional learning solution with Observation Engine™ at its core. The course—called “Blended Model for Observation Certification”—was authored by Dr. Shane Fairbairn of NEFEC. It aims to increase both the accuracy and reliability of observations at the consortium, district, and school levels of member districts on the NEFEC-authored Common Rubric.
Observers began the pilot course by reading and reflecting on content in an online Learning Management System with modules that covered topics ranging from inter-rater reliability and research-based instructional strategies, to each of the 13 observable elements in the Common Rubric. After learning about each of the elements, observers were taken to Observation Engine where they completed a lesson on each element. Each lesson included viewing up to 9 video clips specifically selected to demonstrate varying levels of instruction defined for each element on the Common Rubric’s 1–4 scale. After watching each video segment, observers practiced rating the teaching practice and providing a justification for their score. Observation Engine provided immediate feedback showing the target score and exemplary justification. Upon completing the course, observers were given access to both a one-video practice test (optional) and a two-video certification test (required) in Observation Engine. Passing the certification test with a committee determined score is a requirement for certification with the target scores set by master raters in two different systems and NEFEC’s Common Rubric. The course, which includes onsite professional learning, is also being made available to districts outside of the consortium. Contact Shane Fairbairn for more information.