For some, the term problem-solving carries a negative connotation. In the context of problem-solving with educational data to improve outcomes, a problem is defined as the difference between the desired outcome and the current outcome. There is no assumption that previous efforts to reach the outcome were flawed; rather, the emphasis is on determining ways to reach the desired outcome. Using a problem-solving process with defined steps can help teams in planning for enhancement of current practice. Systematic problem-solving can come in many forms, but should include the use of data across at least four steps: problem identification, problem analysis, plan implementation, and plan evaluation.

Resources to Support Problem-Solving

MTSS Systematic Problem Solving

Guiding questions for each of the steps shown above

Team Initiated Problem Solving

Link to resources and team training for the TIPS model

Resources to support Problem Identification

Problem-Solving: Systems-Level Problem Identification video

The Problem Solving: Systems-Level Problem Identification video is intended to be viewed as a stakeholder team. The content of the presentation covers three broad areas including:
  • An overview of systematic problem solving and the LEA Self-Assessment and Improvement Process (slides 1-7; 13 minutes)
  • A systematic process to synthesize reliable data sources for the purpose of problem identification (slides 8-14; 15 minutes)
  • A systematic process to identify patterns across fidelity and outcome data (slides 15-21; 8 minutes)
Your team should choose how this video could be best utilized to facilitate the problem identification process in your district. It is likely that this video and the related activities would not be viewed and completed in one meeting. This video could be utilized over the course of several meetings to introduce a systematic problem solving model and engage in problem identification. The table of contents button under the video can be utilized to access the slides your team wishes to access.

Transcript: Problem-Solving: Systems-Level Problem Identification video

Problem Identification Template Worksheet

Data Analysis and Theory of Action Presentation

From the February Regional EC Directors' and Coordinators' Meetings

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