Early Warning Systems (EWS) uses research proven thresholds of the ABC’s (Attendance, Behavior and Course Performance) to identify students who are struggling early and intervene to bring students back on track for high school graduation and postsecondary success. Research proven, nationally recognized and highly predictive indicators generally include:
A – Attendance: 90% or lower
B – Behavior : Suspension/Expulsion
C – Course Performance:
- Failure of core course in middle school
- Failure of any course in high school
It is essential that all students graduating from high school are prepared and ready for postsecondary education. Georgetown University Center on Education in the Workforce projects that 67% of Washington State jobs will require postsecondary education by 2018. Early Warning Systems allow districts, schools and community partners to proactively use data to reduce disproportionality and target interventions for those students who most need additional support to reach graduation and beyond. It is a key strategy to help eliminate the opportunity gap and ensure success for each student.
Road Map Region
Since 2012, the Road Map districts of south King County (Auburn, Federal Way, Highline, Kent, Renton, Seattle and Tukwila) have worked together to develop and implement Early Warning Systems through the support of a Gates Foundation grant. The seven districts completed an inventory of their current EWS systems, and completed the following:
- Agreed upon to two collective indicators to track
- Organized district teams to lead EWS
- Wrote Action Plans for EWS implementation
- Created a best practice website repository
- Produced two convenings with national experts such as Dr. Robert Balfanz from John Hopkins University’s Everyone Graduates Center
District and school teams are now integrating data displays of ABC indicators with their tiered intervention systems, monitoring progress and replicating high yield intervention strategies.
In the fall of 2014, PSESD expanded this work to Pierce County school districts. PSESD received an Early Warning Systems (EWS) grant from College Spark Washington to share lessons learned and accelerate progress in this work statewide. The three-year grant provides EWS support to four Pierce County school districts with high-percentages of free/reduced lunch rates, and provides continued support in the Road Map districts.
Bethel, Clover Park, Franklin-Pierce and Tacoma School Districts will receive coaching, professional development workshops, system implementation support and direct funding to help implement fully functioning Early Warning Systems. Please contact our Program Director, Marques Gittens, for more information about Pierce County collaboration.
Looking for resources?
Please visit our Early Warning Systems Resource Repository