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Partner Spotlight - Austin Achieve Public Schools Northeast Campus RSSP Team

The RSSP team at Austin Achieve Public Schools’ Northeast Campus has made tremendous strides in improving outcomes for K-2 scholars, particularly for emergent bilingual students. They have implemented high-quality instructional materials, created strong systems and structures for teachers, and prioritized data-driven decision-making to ensure equitable outcomes for all.

Comprised of Principal Mariela Mensik, Assistant Principal Jessi Lopez, Primary Instructional Coach Mari Tibbetts, and Academic Data Director Jermal Giles, this team is dedicated to empowering their staff and supporting them through schoolwide change in service of students. Through analyzing their student data, the team identified a problem facing their emergent bilingual scholars, who were not achieving the same outcomes as their peers. They recognized that traditional instructional practices were not meeting the needs of these students.

“Their willingness to remain committed to ensuring more equitable outcomes for all scholars, and most specifically, their emergent bilingual scholars, is pronounced in every conversation we have, as well as in their communication of expectations and support provided for planning and instruction,”  said ANet coach Katie Tabbert. 

Their perseverance remains notable. They sought to improve education outcomes through the implementation of high-quality instructional materials with a focus on elevating levels of discourse and differentiation in the classrooms. The team used data and intensive modeling to inform planning meetings with teachers, 1:1 coaching opportunities, and school-wide group learning opportunities. Because of their efforts this year, here’s how  Austin Achieve Public Schools has progressed:

  • At the beginning of the year, only one teacher used a discourse strategy to facilitate student conversation.  By the end of this year, two-thirds of teachers are using two or more strategies for discourse within a ten minute observation. 

  • The ratio of teacher to student talk shifted from fall  (3:1) to spring (1:1) across all classrooms.

  • Continued building expertise in literacy, grounded in improving implementation of their high-quality instructional materials, HMH IntoReading, aligned to the science of reading. 

  • As of this last quarter, kindergarteners achieved an overall average of 81% on formative assessments, with emerging bilingual scholars achieving an average of 80%. They saw similar levels of growth in 1st and 2nd grade, with evidence of closing the gaps for EB scholars from the beginning to the end of the year. 

Through their data-driven decision-making, the RSSP team has created a more empowering learning environment for K-2 scholars, particularly for those who are emergent bilinguals. As a result, all students are able to actively engage in a more empowering learning environment that advances outcomes for Austin Achieve Public Schools scholars.

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