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Cincinnati Public Schools

District Partner 2000-2001, 2006-2007

ERS has partnered with Cincinnati Public Schools (CPS) to conduct a comprehensive review of the district’s professional development (PD), monitor its progress in achieving PD goals, analyze and support its PD planning process, and implementation of weighted student funding.


"ERS is good at comparing one district to other districts and at providing context for reform. They are expert on how to align dollars to resources.
They get it."
-Rosa Blackwell, Former Superintendent, Cincinnati Public Schools

District Facts

Students: 33,783
Staff: 1,821
Schools: 59

Work Focus

  • Professional Development: Assess PD needs, spending, and activities, and help the district stay on target to integrate its PD with district-wide performance objectives and school reform efforts
  • Weighted Student Funding: To support implementation of weighted student funding by conducting ongoing training and support of school principals on strategic resource use

Findings and Outcomes

  • Professional Development: We provided CPS with a powerful inventory of current PD activities and spending that helped the district understand the purpose, topics, skills, delivery, and target populations; the inventory enabled the district to identify PD challenges, priorities, and strategies for staff and helped inform the development of a five-year PD plan that was critical to strategy development and resource alignment

  • Human Capital: With our support, three CPS action teams identified needs in the school for coaching, principal support, and whole-school improvement; the teams achieved the following successes:
    • Development of a district coaching and mentoring model that taps the expertise of master teachers in schools to facilitate grade—and content-based teamwork around planning, practice, observation, and assessment of student work
    • Acquisition of external coaching support to develop teaching leadership within schools
    • Identification of the support and development needs of principals throughout their careers and establishment of short-term priorities—as well as fiscal and staffing requirements—for supporting district principals
    • CPS’ PD work spurred significant efforts to establish standards that are central to improved performance throughout the system; the district now holds schools accountable to achieve specific goals through a comprehensive school planning template (One Plan) that provides rubrics for evaluating progress
    • Training for over two years resulted in significantly more strategic use of resources by cohort principals

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