The Region 15 Comprehensive Center (R15CC), led by WestEd, is part of the national Comprehensive Center Network (CC Network), and works to provide capacity-building technical assistance, content expertise, and other services to effectively support state education agencies (SEAs) and their regional and local constituents in Arizona, California, Nevada, and Utah. R15CC staff provide individualized state support and facilitate regional collaboration between the Arizona Department of Education, California Department of Education, Nevada Department of Education, and Utah State Board of Education.
In addition to supporting SEA staff in Region 15 states, as well as other key stakeholders and partners, R15CC supports improved educator and student outcomes through the following projects:
All Region 15 States
Building Capacity in Rural Settings
This project will support capacity-building skills of rural educators in the areas of improved access to rigorous coursework and instruction, and high-quality professional development to improve school climate. States served include Arizona, Nevada, and Utah.
University of Virginia (UVA) Executive Leadership Program
In this project, the University of Virginia Darden School of Business Partnership for Leaders in Education faculty are providing training, consultation, and coaching to support state education agency (SEA) leaders in Arizona, Nevada, and Utah as they address the most critical challenges faced by their states.
Arizona ELEVATE Initiative
This project supports the Arizona ELEVATE initiative, which uses research, resources, and evidence-based practices to turn around low-performing schools and districts. Practices include leadership development, talent management, observation and feedback, data-driven instruction, and academic/student-centered cultural shifts.
ESSA Plan Revision
This project will assist the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) as they update Arizona’s ESSA Consolidated State Plan (ESSA Plan) to more comprehensively reflect the state’s current priorities, strategic direction, stakeholder feedback, and focus on equity.
Formative Assessment in Arizona
This project will help the ADE implement and scale formative assessment practices across the state by developing demonstration sites, and using the districts that have already incorporated formative assessment as models for newcomers to the practice. This pedagogical strategy can increase student agency and elevate achievement for all student subgroups.
Policy & Practice for English Language Learners in Arizona
This project will work with the ADE as they develop guidelines and resources to help educators and administrators shift their practices to a new set of English language proficiency standards, including a new approach to English learner instruction generally.
Teaching and Learning Framework
In this project, the ADE will develop a Teaching and Learning Framework to guide a refocusing to establish teaching and learning as a central tenet in the state, with particular emphasis on evidence-based practice, equitable and inclusive strategies, and stakeholder input.
California Standards for the Teaching Profession (CSTP) Revision
This project will update the California Standards for the Teaching Profession (CSTP) and will improve dissemination and increase awareness of California’s approved research-based Quality Professional Learning Standards (QPLS).
Closing the Achievement Gap (CTAG) Initiative
This project will provide coaching for the California Department of Education’s (CDE) Career and College Transition, Charter Schools, Educator Excellence and Equity, Equity and STEAM Offices, and State Special Schools and Services Divisions in their work to improve racial harmony and address persistent achievement gaps for vulnerable student populations such as African American students, American Indian students, English learners, and students in Special Education programs.
Comprehensive Literacy State Development (CLSD)
This project features a comprehensive needs assessment conducted by the CDE to support the development and implementation of a comprehensive statewide literacy plan (CSLP) for California that emphasizes strategies for low-income and high-need students.
Data Use & Application
This project will help the CDE develop skills to support research, data analysis, and data visualizations, including capacity to use data to highlight and analyze patterns of resource use, demographics, and performance.
Early Learning and Care Division (ELCD) Organizational Development
This project supports the CDE’s Early Learning and Care Division (ELCD) as they implement a strategic plan (2018–2023) that includes restructuring current staff, the hiring of new staff members, and tapping internal skills and collaboration. These efforts are part of a new statewide “spotlight” on early learning.
Education Equity and Access Branch Support in California
This project will help the five divisions of the Equity and Access Branch within the CDE improve racial harmony and address persistent achievement gaps for vulnerable student populations such as African American students, American Indian students, English learners, and students in Special Education programs. The five divisions cover Career and College Transition, Charter Schools, Educator Excellence and Equity, Equity and STEAM Offices, and State Special Schools and Services.
English Learner Policy and Practice
This project will help CDE staff learn to monitor and report outcomes using the new assessment and accountability systems for English learners. These skills will be used to develop a new standard for English learner reclassification.
Ethnic Studies Focus Group Meetings
This project will convene and facilitate focus groups related to content knowledge, instructional strategies, and professional learning needs to provide resources and support for California schools, districts, and counties that plan to introduce an ethnic studies course in their communities (as mandated by California Assembly Bill 2016, Chapter 327).
Expanded and Early Learning Research and Data Project
This project will build the capacity of CDE staff to analyze and synthesize research data in the areas of expanded learning, early learning, and nutrition services. These skills will be used to develop new positions and related duty statements, staff capacity, and/or the hiring of staff to meet CDE’s need for effective and consistent use of data.
Increasing Effective Coordination and Access to Medical Services for School-Aged Children in California
In this project, the CDE and the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) will conduct interviews, focus groups, and surveys to gather information from stakeholders about how they experience the current Medi-Cal system and to collect ideas for systemwide improvement in access to funding and health services. The project also features a policy scan related to the coordination and expansion of access to funding and health services for students eligible for Medi-Cal.
LCAP Implementation and Stakeholder Engagement in California
This project will help CDE staff develop professional learning resources and technical assistance for school districts to support efforts to meet Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) stakeholder engagement expectations during the three-year cycle of developing and revising the LCAP.
Migrant Education Evaluation Design (MEED) in California
In this project, staff from the Migrant Education Office (MEO) within the CDE will implement a continuous improvement cycle for the state’s migrant education. The project includes baseline performance targets, evaluation design, and alignment with the state service delivery plan.
Opportunities for All Branch (OFAB) Monitoring Community of Practice
In this project, a continuous improvement framework will be used to streamline and improve the specific compliance monitoring requirements of the five divisions (Early Learning and Care, English Learner Support, Expanded Learning, Nutrition Services, and Special Education) of the Opportunities for All Branch (OFAB) within the CDE.
Opportunities for All Branch (OFAB) Support in California
This project supports the Opportunities for All Branch (OFAB) within the CDE, which includes five divisions: Early Learning and Care, English Learner Support, Expanded Learning, Nutrition Services, and Special Education.
Perkins V and CTE State Plan
This project features interagency collaboration to draft and submit a Perkins grant proposal to support the CDE’s vision for career and technical education (CTE) that reflects stakeholder input, includes a multi-level approach to CTE, and addresses industry needs.
School and District Improvement Systems Alignment in California
This project will develop strategies to create alignment and coherence between the district-level focus of the California Statewide System of Support and the school-level focus of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The project will identify which offices are best suited to take on specific aspects of this school and district improvement work and how they can collaborate.
State Assessment and Accountability System
This project will help the CDE implement guidelines, business rules, and other policies that reflect technical quality and transparency and that lead to effective decision-making at the state and local level, particularly in the areas of statewide assessments and accountability data-reporting through the California School Dashboard and the School Accountability Report Cards.
Support for County Office of Education Differentiated Assistance
This project uses an improvement science approach to help CDE staff provide differentiated assistance (targeted technical assistance) to county offices of education (COEs) to improve the performance of identified student groups in their county-run schools.
Supporting Effective Implementation of English Learner Resources
This project outlines a system of professional learning and dissemination for California’s new Observation Protocol for Teachers of English Learners (OPTEL), focusing on how to effectively administer the OPTEL, interpret and use results, communicate results to parents, and leverage relevant English learner-focused CDE resources.
Teacher Workforce Community of Practice
This Community of Practice project will address strategies to mitigate the teacher shortage in California, which is currently affecting more than 80 percent of its school districts. Efforts will focus on increasing access to effective teachers who reflect the diversity of California’s students.
Workplace Climate and Equity in California
This project supports the goal of the CDE to improve racial equity and racial harmony, in collaboration with state agencies led by Health in All Policies (HiAP) from the Governor’s Office and Public Health. The project includes coaching provided to the Government Alliance for Racial Equity (GARE) team so they can respond to inquiries made by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI) about efforts to address equity within the department.
Early Learning Data-Driven Decision-Making in Nevada
This project will help the Nevada Department of Education (NDE) understand the current landscape of funding, stakeholder opinions, and other pertinent data and information with regards to state-funded, high-quality pre-K education. Subsequently, NDE will develop a communications plan to generate grassroots support for increased levels of state funding for high-quality pre-K seats.
Educator Shortages, Recruitment & Retention in Nevada
This project will help the NDE provide administrative support to the legislatively mandated Nevada State Teacher Recruitment and Retention Advisory Task Force by analyzing the causes of the state teacher shortage and developing materials and products for the Task Force.
Implementation of English Language Proficiency Standards in Nevada
In this project, the NDE will be using their recently finalized English Language Development (ELD) Standards Framework to guide and support state educators as they implement the state’s adopted ELD standards in the content areas of English language arts, mathematics, science, and history/social science.
Nevada Department of Education’s Data Infrastructure
This project will help NDE staff better understand data literacy, data governance, data calendaring and definitions, and data quality across the numerous and disparate data systems in use at NDE. This improved understanding will subsequently support data analysis in support of student outcomes as well as responses to stakeholder queries.
Nevada STIP (State Improvement Plan) Revision
This project will assist the NDE revise and implement the legislatively mandated Statewide Plan for the Improvement of Pupils (STIP) in Nevada. The revision process will include gathering and synthesizing input from stakeholders, analyzing relevant data, drafting language for the STIP, and monitoring implementation of the plan.
Utah Comprehensive Plan Development
This project will help the Utah State Board of Education (USBE) consolidate and streamline state and federal reporting requirements regarding school improvement efforts of districts and schools. The project includes a comprehensive needs assessment, the identification of redundancies in state and federal reporting requirements, and the revision of statutory language to support plan consolidation.
Utah Cultural Competency
This project will support the USBE as it responds to the rising number of complaints from students and families regarding equity and discrimination issues. The project will identify research, resources, and expertise on evidence-based practices regarding cultural competency; will develop cultural competency modules for use with teachers; and will support analysis of a pilot implementation of the modules.
Utah District Role in School Improvement
In this project, the USBE will develop an evidence-based outline of district roles and functions to guide district leaders as they support and assist schools undergoing meaningful improvement.
Utah Resource Allocation Review
This project will help the USBE increase their agency awareness and understanding of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) resource allocation review process in order to develop and pilot policies and associated protocols to support periodic review of resource allocations in districts that serve low-performing schools.
Utah School Safety Data Quality
This project will help the USBE improve the quality and use of collected statewide school safety data by developing resources and supports for districts regarding collection, submission, and interpretation of valid and reliable school safety data.
Utah Statewide System of Support (SSoS) Handbook Revision
This project provides technical assistance to the USBE as it revises the State System of Support for School Improvement Handbook, with a focus on stakeholder feedback, results from several pilot studies, federal and state requirements, and evidence-based practices.