Pre-Assessment: Module 5


Element Participant Instructions

Instructor/Facilitator Notes


Open up iMovie, Photobooth or other digital capture format. You are the incoming principal of Catonsville School and have just received a call from a local television news station. A reporter would like to interview you for an upcoming segment on the measured academic achievement gaps in your school’s data.
Using a digital capture format, you have up to 4 minutes to film your answer to these 2 questions:
1. What are your hunches about the causes of the academic achievement gap between White students and students of color?
2. What strategies would you recommend your school adopt to address these academic achievement gaps?

Save the video and submit to the instructor/facilitator

The following Pre-Assessment has been designed to serve as a snapshot of participants’ attitudes and beliefs regarding the interplay of race and achievement. The pre-assessment encourages participants to articulate their beliefs about the relationship between race and achievement. Participants will also engage with this pre-assessment at the end of the module to provide a point of comparison that can be used to self-assess and serve as a baseline to track changes, if any, in perceptions. To complete this assignment, students may need training on iMovie or Windows Moviemaker, Photobooth, or recording on a digital camera. This pre-assessment only requires a simple one shot interview response.

This is a non-graded assignment

Assessment: This is not a graded assignment – unless you wish to offer a grade for completion. The pre-assessment is a formative assessment and is meant to serve as a baseline snapshot of attitudes and beliefs.We find that our graduate students enrolled in a principal preparation program enter the program with considerable variance in their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors regarding race and race-based school issues. Some students may identify institutional and societal variables that contribute to achievement gaps that include deficit thinking, low teacher expectations, high turnover of teachers in schools that serve large percentages of students of color, limited access to rigorous coursework through exclusive class placement practices such as tracking, etc. Other student responses may assert achievement gaps are the result of parents’ disinterest in education, limited financial resources of the family, inadequate academic skills that require extensive remediation, etc. Rather than confront these disparate attitudes at this time, we recommend gathering and viewing the pre-assessment information and providing a series of powerful learning experiences, readings, class discussions and reflection to engage in dialogue with other participants whose views may differ significantly and thus disrupt current ways of knowing and ways of thinking about race.

When reviewing the pre-assessment interview products consider the following equity continuum to locate a student’s initial response to the scenario.

Racial Awareness & Advocacy Development

__Responses reflect deficit thinking regarding student ability to achieve (does not recognize inequities , makes sweeping assumptions about student and/or families such as family doesn’t think education is important;  blames poverty  and/or low self-efficacy in making a difference in education of traditionally marginalized students. __Responses reflect candidate’s awareness of inequities and desire to address inequities but strategies limited to superficial changes impacting students & parents (tutoring, family nights, etc.) __ Responses reflect candidate’s awareness of inequities and desire to address inequities by examining and changing school-based structures and learning environment through professional development, inclusive classrooms, etc. __Responses include examination of institutional structures that have traditionally marginalized students and/or adoption of strategies incorporating culturally responsive leadership through shared power, advocacy and inclusion.
Extended Activity