April 1, 2020
Starting by knowing your district data and policies is essential to the success of an instructional materials adoption. By reviewing district data (both quantitative and qualitative), you are grounding the upcoming work in your district’s unique context which will inform the decision-making for all of your stakeholders. At its best, a successful adoption process begins with identifying the specific needs of your local community, including students and teachers. EdReports uses this tool when preparing districts for transparent, comprehensive materials adoptions that are grounded in district contexts.
Understanding your local context requires gathering many types of information. This resource includes key categories and questions that adoption committees can consider before beginning the adoption process or looking at specific materials.
This data collection tool is designed for the district leader responsible for guiding the adoption committee as well as the committee members tasked with investigating materials. Executing on this data collection supports the process in multiple ways. First, it serves as a starting place for determining priorities and procedures. Second, it helps ground the committee on cross-district successes and challenges - perspectives that are not always commonly held or visible across committee members. Third, the practice of gathering and analyzing data builds adoption team members’ capacity to effectively use data to inform the final materials decision. Some questions here may be easy to identify and collect; however, there are other questions that districts may struggle to answer. Note these struggles, but do not fixate on finding every answer. The fact that these data are difficult to find is interesting data in itself.