Data Editing and Data Analysis
Data from the school form and questionnaires were entered into three databases (for pupils, teachers and principals), cleaned and edited. Also, the pupil results from two tests (TIMSS 2011 4th grade test and national 2015 8th grade test in mathematics and natural sciences) were entered into the database and linked. Having data adequately prepared for analyses represents the third milestone.
Different data analyses were run for SPF and EF parts of the project, but both were using multilevel modelling in order to appropriately separate and estimate the relative influences of various effectiveness factors. SPF used the results of two tests and pupil-level background data to assign each individual school its value added. In other words, the pupil-level background factors, such as SES – which are outside of realm of teachers and schools – were statistically removed, so that schools can clearly see and examine their own contribution to pupils’ learning. During this part of the project, the SPF system itself was tested and fine tuned. In the EF part of the project, teacher and school variables were included in the EF multilevel analyses, alongside pupil variables and tests, so that the direction and the magnitude of their effects on pupil learning can be determined. This part of the project helped refine and confirm the dynamic model of educational effectiveness. Because of methodological validity issues, the findings of such EF analyses are not ascribed to each individual school, but to the population of schools.
The statistical analyses were translated into two user-friendly project outputs: SPF report and EF handbook.
School Performance Feedback (SPF)
SPF is the document created for each individual school that participated in the educational effectiveness research. Based on the pupil background data and pupils’ achievement schools will be informed about their value added.
Effectiveness Factors (EF)
For the EF, three types of questionnaires were developed (for pupils, teachers and principals) in order to collect data on a variety of teacher and school practices and characteristics impacting pupil learning.
An important aspect of the project was distribution of the SPF report and EF handbook to schools. These documents will be distributed in paper, but also their electronic version will be distributed – not just to participants in the research, but also to many other schools, stakeholders and policymakers.
Professional development programs based on the findings of the effectiveness study was provided to schools in Belgium, Cyprus and Serbia. The programs were supported with the production of the EPD materialsWider dissemination and sustainability-oriented events (round tables, conferences, meetings with policymakers) were and will be organized in order to promote the main results of the project. Also, various dissemination materials (EPD pamphlet, policy brief, thematic journal issues) were, ali will be produced.