Opportunity Gap Cohorts


The PL Team listens to our schools!  We are committed to making an impact on the Denver Plan 2020 goal associated with closing the opportunity gap and providing all students access to educational opportunities that allow them to achieve at the highest levels.

The PL Team, in partnership with CELT, ELA Whole Child, FACE and SEO, now offers an Opportunity Gap Cohort focused on peer-to-peer learning for school leadership teams based upon a problem of practice for a targeted group of underserved students. This cohort has launched problem of practice teams in the following areas:

  1. Excellence for Inclusive Practices —Focus on underserved population of student with special needs
  2. Excellence for African-American Students—Focus on an underserved population of African-Americans
  3. Excellence for Latino Students– Focus on an underserved population of Latinos
  4. Excellence for All —Focus on an under-identified population of Gifted and Talented students of color
  5. Excellence for Linguistic Students —Focus on an underserved population of English Learners (Coming Soon)

These teams are facilitated by the PL Team to provide time and space for participants to deepen research-based knowledge; explore best practices in action; and focus on student engagement and achievement for targeted group of underserved students.

Solving Disproportionality and Achieving Equity: A Leader’s Guide to Using Data

Dr. Eddie Fergus, author of Solving Disproportionality and Achieving Equity: A Leader’s Guide to Using Data to Change Hearts and Minds, and faculty at New York University, has joined our team to support our Opportunity Gap Cohorts with school-based strategic planning and team-designated activities.

The PL Team’s Theory of Action for the Opportunity Gap Cohort is that if school leadership teams engage in data-driven collaborate with peers and focus their learning on a targeted group of underserved students, school-based structures and practice will be transformed and will impact student success.



Cohort I Launch

The Cohort I kickoff on March 22, 2107 was a success! Eighteen instructional leadership teams made the commitment to engage in data-driven collaboration; to examine school-based structures and practices; and to take action steps that will have the greatest impact on student success.  During the kickoff, Dr. Fergus supported school teams to understand the unintended consequences of integration, including the impact those policies had on the swift reduction of African American educators from the workforce–a reduction that continues to plague our education system today.  School teams also explored 3 types of biases and how they show up the existing educational structures: color-blindness, deficit thinking, and poverty-disciplining.  This learning set up the foundation for a common language for how we talk about equity at the district and school level.  The PL Team also launched an online professional learning community in Schoology to share best practices amongst schools, support data-based practices in-between school visits, and to explore common wonderings about equity across teams.

Next Up This Spring

School teams will engage in an Environmental Scan, Classroom Walkthroughs, and Student Focus Groups, and visit districts who are also closing the opportunity gap to determine, for their school community, the focus area(s) that will provide the highest leverage for transformational growth and what approaches should be prototyped first. After schools have participated in an aligned professional learning opportunity and selected school visits, cohort members will be creating a year-long opportunity (AIM) statement using Improvement Science methods which is grounded in continuous cycles of improvement and supported by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

Interested in Cohort 2 in Spring 2018?

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