in 1992, the Tri-State Consortium has developed an alternative assessment model
designed to enhance student performance in high-performing school districts.
districts receive triennial assessment visits by teams of "critical
friends"— trained educators from within the Consortium who evaluate
and report on district programs using eight "indicators" to
measure the degree to which the district is utilizing multiple forms of
student performance data as the basis for its planning.
team also spends time developing responses to "essential
questions" posed by the district to elicit the team's best thinking
about issues of teaching and learning.
evaluation report developed by the visit team opens with the team's
responses to the district's essential questions.
report includes commendations of the district's strengths and
recommendations to suggest next steps for the district's growth.
the report includes highlighted text on the scoring rubric that reflects
the district's approach for each of the indicators, the degree to which
the approach has been implemented, and student performance results that
are attributable to that approach.
district's assessment report is used to prioritize and plan actions that
will support further growth.
years after the visit, a representative subset of the original visiting
team returns,and facilitates a conversation focused on the actions
taken by the district in response to the team's recommendations.
the Consortium's affiliation with the Middle States Association of
Colleges and Schools, New York and New Jersey, member districts receiving
Tri-State visits are accorded Middle States accreditation. The Consortium
also collaborates with the New England Association of Schools and
Colleges to integrate their respective assessment processes for the
Consortium's Connecticut member districts.
addition to three-day external peer review visits centered on
disciplines, such as K-12 math and K-12 English Language Arts, the
Consortium also organizes one and two day consultancies, usually focused
on specific programs or approaches.
Consortium provides six study group opportunities for school and district
leaders: elementary principals, middle school principals, high school
principals, assistant principals, curriculum leaders, and
superintendents. These study groups meet four or five times annually and
focus on issues relating to leadership and student learning. The
Consortium also facilitates topic-based study groups focused on matters
of interest to member districts.
Consortium holds two conferences for members annually. These conferences
usually involve a presentation by a well known educator as well as
opportunities to share experiences with people from other member