• II-D-3: Access to Knowledge
    Unsatisfactory
    Needs Improvement
    Proficient
    Exemplary
    Rarely adapts instruction, materials, and assessments to make challenging material accessible to all students. Occasionally adapts instruction, materials, and assessments to make challenging material accessible to all students. Consistently adapts instruction, materials, and assessments to make challenging material accessible to all students, including English learners and students with disabilities. Individually and with colleagues, consistently adapts instruction, materials, and assessments to make challenging material accessible to all students, including English learners and students with disabilities. Is able to model this element.
    Why Proficiency in this Element Matters
    • Equitable access to learning is essential to closing achievement and opportunity gaps.
    • Curriculum and instructional activities that are designed to include diverse and multiple access points and include explicit connections to students’ prior knowledge, linguistic backgrounds and cultural funds of knowledge, increase students’ ability to process and make meaning of new information. Long-term memory networks are stimulated and strengthened.
    • Equitable access to learning and instructional activities, fosters active, high cognitive engagement, student agency and investment in the learning process.
    Reflection Questions

    These questions may help to assess how effectively common obstacles to consistent/sustained proficiency in this element are addressed

    For Educators For Evaluators/Coaches
    What is my definition of “diversity” and how does this definition impact how I plan to meet the needs of all students?  How can I learn more about the diversity of my students and use this information to create “gateways” to the content, foster engagement, and create an accessible learning environment?

    Does the educator have a broad definition of diversity that encompasses that which makes us unique beyond what is documented in IEPs and EL levels?  How effectively does the educator make an explicit effort to learn about students and their families and work to leverage student differences as assets to build upon?

    What do I know about my students’ learning preferences, interests, needs, prior knowledge and experiences, and linguistic and cultural backgrounds?  Do I consider these to be assets or deficits to overcome?  How does my perspective impact the messages that I convey about effort and ability, and my selection of resources, tools and instructional strategies? Is the educator aware of the power of implicit messaging and does he/she make an explicit effort to convey the belief, through words and actions, that all students have the ability to learn and grow?  How effectively does the educator’s planning and use of instructional strategies, tools and resources support this message? How do you know?  What evidence supports your claim?
    How effectively do I plan lessons to be universally accessible to all students by explicitly planning each one to include multi-modal tools, resources and strategies to convey information, foster high cognitive engagement, and enable students to demonstrate learning? How often is the planning and implementation of lessons that include multimodal instructional strategies, resources and tools evident in daily lesson plans and observations of practice, or is there little variation within a given lesson or in day to day practice?  What specific evidence supports your claim? What suggestions and resources can you share to encourage the educator to take risks outside his/her comfort zone?
    How often do my instructional strategies and selection of resources and tools meet the needs of all learners in my classroom?  Are there students whose needs are not being addressed?  If so, what information do I need to make effective adjustments to my practice and increase the accessibility of both content and learning activities?  How effectively is the educator able to articulate his/her choice of instructional strategies, resources and tools and provide a rationale for these choices that explicitly connects to the needs of individual students?
    How many different modes of access for representation, engagement and expression are present in my lessons? How can I create more access points for students? What additional modes can I try? How frequently does the educator regularly reflect on the effectiveness of lessons as measured by students’ ability to access the content and engage in rigorous thinking and learning activities, both individually and with peers?  Does the educator effectively use student learning data and professional insight to make adjustments that specifically address identified gaps in students’ access to learning? What evidence supports your claim?
    What are my expectations for all students’ learning and how do I convey these expectations? What strategies do I use to I teach students that ability is not fixed and that effort can lead to success? How can I provide students with choices and ensure access to diverse tools and resources that help  them be successful while also teaching them how to be active leaders of  their own  learning?  
    What instructional practices should be observed? What student impacts should be expected?
    For TEACHERS this may look like.
    1. Teacher rarely plans, adapts or delivers lessons or assessments designed to be accessible to all students,  including students with diverse needs and interests, students who carry IEPs and students with diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds.

    1. Teacher inconsistently plans, adapts or delivers learning activities and assessments that are accessible to all students, including students with diverse needs and interests, students who carry IEPs and students with diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds

    1. Teacher frequently uses students’ learning preferences; interests; needs; prior knowledge and experiences; and linguistic and cultural backgrounds to plan and adapt  multi-modal, standards-aligned learning activities; multiple measures of  assessment; student groupings; and to differentiate the timing and content of teacher assigned and student initiated tasks.

    1. Teacher consistently uses each student’s learning preferences; interests; needs; prior knowledge and experiences; and linguistic and cultural backgrounds to plan multi-modal, standards-aligned learning activities; multiple measures of  assessment; student groupings; and to differentiate the timing and content of teacher assigned and student initiated tasks. Instructional design is developed to be universally accessible in meeting individual student needs, therefore the need for  adaptation of plans may be minimal. Teacher models this element for peers.

    1. Teacher may convey to some students that materials is too challenging for them, and does not model how students can master the material through strategies and effort.

    1. Teacher may convey to students that the material is challenging, but rarely models how students with diverse learning preferences and needs can master the material through strategies and effort.

    1. Teacher models how students with diverse learning preferences, interests, and needs can master challenging material and meet learning goals through effective strategies and effort. Teacher provides students with diverse opportunities and resources to meet these goals.

    1. Teacher clearly and consistently models how each individual student can master challenging materials and provides students with diverse opportunities and resources to meet these goals. Teacher uses an asset-based approach that  leads students to become self-aware, articulate their learning preferences and participate in the selection of resources and activities that would enrich and expand learning.

    1. Teacher does not convey a belief that all students can master challenging material. Feedback provided to students rarely facilitates their sustained attention to task/activity and fosters perseverance towards meeting the learning goal.

    1. Teacher may convey that students need to work hard, but does not instill the belief that students can master challenging material and /or does not provide access to diverse learning opportunities and resources. Feedback provided to students may not be designed to facilitate their sustained attention to task/activity or foster perseverance towards meeting the learning goal.

    1. Teacher conveys and instills the belief that all students, regardless of learning preferences, interests, and needs can master challenging material and provides access to all students through diverse, multi-modal resources and learning opportunities and through ongoing feedback that facilitates their sustained attention to task/activity and fosters perseverance towards meeting the learning goal.

    1. Teacher consistently conveys and instills the belief in students, families, and colleagues that each student can master challenging material, invites students to co-construct learning and ensures access to all students through the provision of diverse, multi-modal  resources and learning opportunities and through ongoing feedback that facilitates their sustained attention to task/activity and fosters perseverance towards meeting the learning goal. Teacher models this element for peers.

    1. Teacher provides learning supports that only a few students can access.

    1. Teacher provides learning supports that are dependent on limited means of conveying content and fostering engagement, and/or relies on linguistic and cultural resources that are not inclusive of all students backgrounds, prior knowledge and/or experiences.

    1. Teacher ensures that all students are able to access all learning supports by embedding multiple scaffolding strategies that do not diminish the cognitive demand of the task and through the use of research based instructional strategies and/or interventions, for example, Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS), Response to Intervention (RTI), the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Sheltered English Immersion (SEI).

    1. Teacher ensures that each student is able to independently access learning supports and resources by embedding multiple scaffolding strategies that do not diminish the cognitive demand of the task and through the use of research based instructional strategies and/or interventions, for example, Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS), Response to Intervention (RTI), the Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Teacher models these strategies for peers.

    1. Students do not receive all necessary in-class supports or modifications as outlined in IEPs or EL guidelines.

    1. Students inconsistently receive all necessary in-class supports or modifications as outlined in IEPs or EL.

    1. All students receive all necessary in-class supports or modifications as outlined in IEPs or EL guidelines and  based on their individual cultural backgrounds.

    1. All students receive all necessary in-class supports or modifications as outlined in IEPs or EL guidelines and  based on their individual cultural backgrounds.Teacher instills understanding in students of their own learning needs and the tools and strategies that lead to academic success and social/ emotional  well-being.

    As a result, the IMPACT on STUDENTS may be...
    1. Students often convey a fixed mindset and lack of agency in their learning by giving up immediately when tasks are challenging.

    1. Students inconsistently demonstrate a growth mind-set and convey a limited sense of agency by rarely attempting challenging work; infrequently seeking out resources and supports;  and/or sometimes giving up before tasks are complete.

    1. Students exhibit a growth  mind-set and convey a sense of agency in their learning by  demonstrating perseverance and initiative in trying to complete tasks, even when they are challenging.

    1. Students consistently exhibit a growth mind-set and convey a sense of agency in their learning by demonstrating  perseverance and initiative when completing challenging tasks; seeking out and using appropriate resources; and by expanding their learning to real life challenges.

    1. Students do not demonstrate the use of diverse strategies, resources and tools to complete tasks, meet learning objectives  and engage in effective problem solving.

    1. Students infrequently demonstrate the use of diverse strategies, resources and tools to complete tasks, meet learning objectives  and engage in effective problem solving and/or the selection of tools and strategies are inefficient, ineffective and/or misaligned to goals.

    1. Students demonstrate the use of diverse strategies, resources and tools to complete tasks, meet learning objectives  and engage in effective problem solving.

    1. Students frequently experiment, adapt, and make distinction between effective/ineffective, strategies, resources and tools to meet learning objectives  and engage in effective problem solving. Students share these strategies to support their peers in solving problems.

    1. Students are not engaged in multi-modal  learning activities.

    1. Students are sometimes engaged in   cognitively demanding,  multi-modal learning activities,  independently, with peers, with adults, and through  writing, using visual images or symbols, academic discourse, and the use of media and technology, etc.. and/or students are engaged in multi-modal learning activities, but these activities are cursory in nature and do not foster deep level processing.

    1. Students are actively engaged in cognitively demanding,  multi-modal learning activities,  independently, with peers, with adults,and through  writing, using visual images or symbols, academic discourse, and the use of media and technology, etc.

    1. Students are consistently engaged in cognitively demanding, multi-modal learning activities, independently, with peers, with adults, and through  writing, using visual images or symbols, academic discourse, and the use of media and technology, etc... Students demonstrate self-awareness, articulate their learning preferences and participate in the selection of resources and activities that support their learning.

    Name Description Type
    Coming Soon
    Resource Name Description Type
    Make mathematics instruction engaging and accessible for all students. Provides helpful hints for making mathematics instruction accessible for all learners. short article
    Do you have a resource that you want to recommend for this element? Email us at eval@bostonpublicschools.org with the subject line "Interactive Rubric Resource Recommendation" in the email