Guiding Questions for MSL Systems:
MSL Process and Stakeholder Engagement

Educator Input
District processes that adequately incorporate educators’ voices and perspectives will benefit from educators’ expertise and buy-in. Data gathered from CEI’s Integration Project suggest that teachers who participate in the selection of the MSLs used in their evaluations are significantly more likely to respond positively regarding the use and validity of MSLs than those who did not report participation in MSL selection.

In what ways did your district solicit and incorporate educators’ voices and perspectives in the MSL decision-making process?

  • At a minimum, has your district solicited input from educators on the system (e.g., feedback survey)?
  • What avenues of communication have you utilized in communicating about the MSL system to educators?
    • How have you highlighted the role of educators in MSL system creation when communicating about your process with your staff and the broader community?
  •  How have educators contributed in meaningful ways to the design and ongoing refinement of the MSL system in your district?
    • Have you purposefully included educators across grades and content areas?
    • If you have not yet engaged your educators in these ways, how might you include them moving forward, and how has your district worked with various stakeholders to ensure buy-in?
Transparency and Timing
Transparency and the provision of timely information to educators and other stakeholders are critical to building trust in the system.

How has your district ensured transparency with regard to the MSL system?

  • Are educators given information regarding the MSL system, measures, assessments, and targets early enough to allow them to understand expectations and plan curriculum efficiently?
  • Do educators have the necessary information to understand the measures used in their evaluation? Is there a communication plan in place?
  • How have you made connections for educators between the MSL system and other district programs and initiatives?
  • Is there transparency in the target-setting process?
  • Has your district taken the appropriate safeguards to protect student and educator data privacy and personally identifiable information, in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local laws, including the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)? Appropriate safeguards should include district policies, procedures, data systems security, and employee training. CDE has developed guidance for school districts on data privacy and security.
  • Does your district have processes for informing other stakeholders (e.g., parents) about your MSL system?
  • How is your district ensuring that your processes and decisions are properly documented in order to maintain institutional knowledge and communicate consistently with stakeholders?
Continuous Improvement and System Evaluation
While it is easy to get bogged down or overwhelmed with technical considerations, including the assurance of reliability and validity in your MSL system, it is also important that your district focuses on continuous improvement and overall system evaluation. There are processes and strategies that all districts can adopt to ensure the credibility and defensibility of the MSL system.

How has your district planned for continuous MSL system improvement and adopted formal feedback mechanisms for stakeholders?

  • What data and information do you collect to allow you to evaluate your MSL system and its alignment to overall educator effectiveness data, student outcomes, and the effectiveness of other district initiatives? How are you defining success with regard to your MSL system?
  • Is your district engaging a diverse group of stakeholders in system evaluation and continuous improvement processes?
  • How is your district communicating to your stakeholders about system changes made through continuous improvement process?

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