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Selecting & Implementing an Instructional Delivery Model for SY20-21: Toolkit for Pennsylvania LEAs

This toolkit was created by Mass Insight Education & Research in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

The Scenario Planning Guide provides a variety of resources to help local education agency (LEA) planning teams organize their work, choose an instructional delivery model, and effectively implement the selected model(s). This toolkit aims to guide LEAs through the process of selecting and implementing an instructional delivery model for the fall that maximizes in-person learning while protecting the health and safety of students and staff. The resources provided in the guide are highly adaptive and can be tailored to meet each local community's context and needs.

The purpose of this toolkit is to help local education agencies (LEAs) plan to facilitate high quality student learning while protecting the health and safety of all stakeholders during the 2020-2021 school year.  Specifically, this toolkit aims to guide LEAs through the process of selecting and implementing an instructional delivery model that maximizes in-person learning and ensures standards-aligned and rigorous remote learning – when remote learning is necessary.  This toolkit does not, and is not intended to, prescribe a specific course of action.  Each LEA has unique needs that will require careful work by leaders, staff, families, and students.  The best plan for one community may not be the best plan for another.  Instead, this toolkit is intended to provide a set of guiding questions and recommended steps that LEAs can take in order to prepare for the coming year.

Access a webinar led by Mass Insight that provides an overview of the “Selecting & Implementing an Instructional Delivery Model for the 2020-21 School Year” toolkit.

Toolkit Structure and Contents

The toolkit provides a variety of resources to help LEA planning teams organize their work, choose an instructional delivery model, and plan to implement that model.

Each section of the toolkit includes a brief description of one way to approach the work and tools that LEAs can download and adapt/adopt. The steps below can be addressed in the order presented, in another order, iteratively, and/or with additional steps added.  LEAs are strongly encouraged to review the entire toolkit prior to beginning work.

Instructional Model - this imaged is defined in the table below.

Section ​Description
​Establish a Team and Planning Process

This section includes recommendations for establishing a team, setting expectations, and managing the work.

​Create and Implement Communication Plan

This section provides considerations in communication planning and a communication plan template that can be adapted, as well as a static dashboard that can be used to update various stakeholder groups.

​Gather Information and Form Operating Assumptions

This section includes a baseline set of essential questions for choosing an instructional delivery model, a template that can be used to collect information from a variety of functional areas, and an example template completed for illustrative purposes only.

​Choose Instructional Delivery Model(s)

​This section offers a protocol for the planning team to consider the information collected in the gathering phase to make an informed decision around an instructional delivery model for the fall.

​Plan to Implement Chosen Instructional Delivery Model

This section contains six critical readiness factors that offer questions, and examples, around how to implement the chosen instructional delivery model.

​Monitor Implementation and Impact

Organizing multiple contributors, stakeholders, and work streams that are constantly evolving will be key to success. This section offers protocols that can be used to facilitate a streamlined implementation.  Additionally, LEAs are encouraged to set specific dates on the calendar in mid-fall to analyze the impact of decisions and plan to pivot, if necessary.

Toolkit Development

This toolkit was designed around the following principles:

  • Health & Safety: Prioritize the physical, social/emotional, and mental health of both students and staff.
  • Academics: Ensure students have access to high quality instruction to meet grade level expectations. 
  • Equity: Ensure equity and access for all students. All decisions should be made with careful consideration of their impact on historically underserved populations.
  • Transparency: Make decisions in partnership with all stakeholders, especially students, families, and staff.
  • Efficiency: Act quickly, while considering many facets of local circumstances.
  • Regulatory Guidance: Satisfy all federal, state, and local requirements.

In addition to the above, individual LEAs should determine if there are other priorities based on their local context that need to be considered, and that will drive their work between now and the end of their planning for the coming school year.

This toolkit is based in consideration of guidance from federal and state education and public health authorities and as of its release the authors are not aware of any information or suggestions contained herein that run counter to current guidance. As guidance is being continually updated using new information, LEAs are encouraged to regularly check to ensure specific requirements have not changed.