Working as a Team: The Essential Guide to APTT

Grade 2 Teacher Ms. Fox gives us the inside scoop on APTT, and how it improves student learning and benefits the school community.


As part of our partnership with the Flamboyan Foundation, Maury is doing a different kind of parent–teacher conference in Grades 2–5: the Academic Parent Teacher Team (APTT) Meeting. (This is the first year for Grade 2; Grades 3–5 have been using APTT since 2014.)

Background
The APTT model was first developed in Arizona in the early 2000s to improve student outcomes in a struggling school district. When teachers began engaging with families as a group, coaching parents on specific skills, and encouraging families to work together and support each other, student achievement improved dramatically.

Since then, hundreds of schools have used APTT, and report that they have more engaged, confident students with increased attendance; improved parent-teacher communication; and better parent-supported student learning at home.

An example of how student data may be shared in an APTT meeting. Here, each student is represented by a letter; parents know their child's letter, and can see both their child's performance and how it fits in context with the whole grade.

An example of how student data may be shared in an APTT meeting. Here, each student is represented by a letter; parents know their child’s letter, and can see both their child’s performance and how it fits in context with the whole grade.

How Does the APPT Work?
Three times a year, all of the families in a grade level come together to discuss critical reading and math skills. For example, Grade 2 families will meet this week to discuss reading comprehension and addition/subtraction fact fluency.

During the 75-minute APTT meeting, families will learn more about each critical skill students need to learn: which standard it addresses, why it is important to their child’s overall progress, and the assessment(s) used to track student progress. Teachers will share resources and activities so families can practice skills at home—and even have a chance to try the activities at the meeting!

At the second and third meetings, families will see updated progress with the skills, learn more about how they can support students at home, and receive new activities. Giving the family more ownership over their child’s progress empowers them to not only practice at home, but to also track their child’s growth.

Families also have the opportunity to set individual goals. The APTT model builds in one 30-minute individual parent–teacher conference, where parents and teachers review an individual student’s performance data and create an action plan to support that student’s learning.

Improving Results for Students and Families
With APTT, families walk away feeling confident not only about the skills, but also how their child is progressing. They know where their child needs to be by the next meeting—and by the end of the year. Rather than see their child’s data in isolation, families are able to track how their child is doing with averages from across the grade level, and have a strong understanding of how to move their child from point A to point B.

Apart from its benefits for student learning, APTT also helps create a sense of community. Because families come together three times a year for APTT meetings, they get to know each other on a deeper level. The meetings allow families to swap suggestions about at-home activities, and create a space for parents to share challenges, successes, resolve conflicts, and more.

If you have a child in Grades 2–5, please be sure to attend your APTT meetings this year! For more information, ask your child’s teacher, or visit the Flamboyan website’s APTT page, which features a short video of APTT in action.

Posted in Maury Messenger Blog.

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