Design Principles

The following considerations are designed to guide the development, implementation, and evaluation of partnership activities.

Considerations for Individual Projects

  • Coherence with the mission and vision of the partnership: In what ways does this project address the goals laid out in the mission and vision statements?
  • Benefit/impact on children, practicing teachers, and interns:  Specifically, what will be the benefits/impact on those involved or peripherally impacted?
  • Sustainability (use of resources):   What will be the costs?  (time, space, transportation, communications, food, operating costs (energy) materials, staff)  Are there possibilities for continuing or replicating this project?
  • Communication: How will opportunities for participation be communicated to staff, families & children.  How will lessons learned from the project be communicated to the AAPS and U-M communities? In what ways will the project be represented so that parents and community members easily comprehend it (including regular use of multiple languages)?
  • Curricular “accounting”:  How does the project  support or impact the curriculum? Is the project supplementing, enhancing, augmenting, or replacing district curriculum?  Is there a balance between enrichment activities and academically focused activities?
  • Evaluation: What is the plan for evaluating the impact of the initiative? How will evaluation results be shared?
  • Research:  Will there be aspects of this project that will be part of a research project?  Have procedures been put in place for informed consent?  Are there plans for engaging participants in the research process and reporting on findings?
  • Access:  What children/adults/families get to be involved?  (Examples: low and higher achievers;  special needs students; ELL)? What are the logistics that will make access possible? (example: Informing families in multiple languages) Are there ways to open up access to involvement? 

Considerations for Partnership Activity as a Whole

  • Collective impact: Is there a balance of small vs. large initiatives?  What is the cumulative impact of the array of projects?
  • Origins of the initiatives: Is there a balance of projects that are proposed by the university and by the teachers?  Have the resources first been focused on Mitchell-Scarlett and School of Education initiatives?  Have initiatives proposed from outside the partnership been vetted using the design principles?
  • Coherence of the learning agenda for teachers:  Are there strands or themes to the professional development opportunities?  Are teachers involved in determining what “coherence” means?
  • Intensity of workload:  Are there reasonable levels of expectations for all the people involved—teachers, children, teacher educators, interns?  Does the cumulative “load” for all involved constitute a reasonable workload?