IN THIS ISSUE

Customer Spotlight: West Baton Rouge Parish Schools

How WBR maximized the value of their PeopleAdmin solutions

PeopleAdmin’s solutions are designed to offer the functionality K-12 schools and districts need to overcome talent management challenges, and built with dozens of customization options so each individual school or district can meet its unique needs. And with all that functionality, the most skilled users know that deep product knowledge is key to maximizing benefits.

“We immediately recognized that PeopleAdmin’s solutions are vital to our recruiting, hiring and onboarding processes,” said Barbara Burke, director of human resources and staff development at West Baton Rouge Parish Schools (WBR) in Louisiana. “So, we reached out for additional training, and we were highly impressed with the response time, expertise and thorough walk-through of the system.”

Dawn Doucet, human resources administrative assistant at WBR, added that the training experience was more than informative — it was enjoyable.

“Our trainer truly made learning fun,” she said. “We could not have become efficient users of the system in such a short time without him.”

Having gained a better understanding of their solutions’ capabilities, Dawn and Barbara are now taking full advantage of the customization options offered by both Recruit & Hire — PeopleAdmin’s applicant tracking solution — and Records — PeopleAdmin’s recordkeeping solution.

“Being able to change the workflows in Recruit & Hire is great,” Barbara said. “All the applications come to me for screening, but, anytime I go on vacation, I can just switch that over and let the applications go to Dawn.”

In Records, Barbara and her team customized the filing system, which allows them to more easily find important documentation needed to defend against an audit.

“We were able to set up the files exactly how we want them,” Barbara explained. “Records allows you to customize your files, set up your naming convention, add sleeves, and whatever else you need.”

With the efficiencies gained from their improved solution use, Barbara said, the WBR human resources team is “100 percent satisfied with the products and services PeopleAdmin provides to us.”

Want to take advantage of training options at your school or district?

To help you get the most out of your solutions, PeopleAdmin works with customers to tailor the perfect online or in-person training offerings — such as those listed below — to meet the specific needs of your school or district.

Administrator JumpStart Training
Perfect for system administrators who are familiar with their PeopleAdmin solution but are looking to refresh or advance their solution knowledge. This four-hour training session offers a deep drive into system functionality and is tailored to cover the areas that are most beneficial to your district.

Administrator SmartStart Training
Have a new system administrator who missed your original implementation training program? This program is for you. Designed to provide an end-to-end overview of your solution’s capabilities, this training session delivers the knowledge and experience needed for successful solution use.

To sign up for training, fill out the form below.

Assessing principal candidates 101

Understanding what’s behind data-based assessments that accurately predict principal effectiveness

While hiring the right principal is crucial to ensuring a school operates effectively and maximizes student achievement, once credentials are checked, districts often rely on a principal selection process that’s largely subjective, rather than data-based … but PeopleAdmin is bringing together research and technology to change that.

“A principal will affect how a school functions as an organization and how teachers operate within the school,” said PeopleAdmin Chief Research Officer Nick Montgomery. “If you hire the wrong principal, you really are missing the cornerstone for school success.”

To assist K-12 leaders in selecting the best principals for their schools, Nick worked with a research consortium to determine the measurable candidate traits that predict principal effectiveness … then the PeopleAdmin team built the Principal Educators Professional Inventory (Principal EPI)®.

— a solution that makes it easy to analyze and access these data on each individual applicant.

“PeopleAdmin’s Principal EPI is a tremendous tool in the creation of our administrative candidate pools,” said Chris Tatum, director of secondary personnel at Amarillo Independent School District in Texas. “It has given our executive team a solid set of data points to make more informed hiring decisions for each of our campus leadership positions.”

So, how does it all work? The key, Nick says, is building upon a foundation of solid research.

“The research consortium is a group of individuals and organizations that are experts in the fields of research, education, psychometrics, and predictive analytics,” Nick said. “We came together to identify the components that matter most for predicting principal effectiveness by looking at a variety of components — the actions, activities and behaviors of a principal — and how those influence the school as an organization, as well as the culture within that school. We then looked at how that ultimately translated to student experiences and student outcomes.”

The research uncovered four domains that indicate principal effectiveness:

  1. Principal responsibilities — candidates’ knowledge of teaching and their understanding of school improvement factors.
  2. Leadership dispositions — their personality and values.
  3. Leadership skills — candidates’ creativity, decision-making skills and follow-through.
  4. Principal qualifications — their ability to meet licensure requirements, as well as their previous teaching and leadership experience.

Based on this information, PeopleAdmin created the Principal EPI’s 120-question assessment.

“The assessment measures those first three domains — principal responsibilities, leadership dispositions and leadership skills — and then an applicant tracking system would give the district access to information on their qualifications,” Nick explained.

After principal candidates complete the assessment, the scores are instantly available, sorted and rank-ordered with other applicants so it’s easy for district leaders or administrators to quickly identify who is most likely to have the best impact on student outcomes.

“We have two ways of showing the information to those hiring administrators,” Nick said. “One is through a color-coding system that shows which principal candidates are scoring above average, average and below average. That goes from green to yellow to red.”

While the first method allows district leaders or administrators to quickly screen principal candidates, the second provides a more in-depth analysis.

“We also provide a really detailed view. Principal candidates read a case study and then provide long, written responses to standardized questions,” Nick said. “Administrators are able to access those responses, which allows them to really understand how that person is thinking about and processing information.”

In addition to assessing principal effectiveness, the Principal EPI generates a Professional Development Profile™ (PDP) — a customized guide that provides specific, actionable steps to help principal candidates advance their skills.

“You get this look at where your strengths are and where your opportunities for improvement as a principal are,” Nick said. “It really helps you understand who you are as a principal and lets you leverage your strengths.”

Districts simplify contract renewals and other records management tasks with easy-to-use software designed for K-12 education

‘No overtime, no paper. Just a very simple
and easy process’

To more effectively manage contracts, personnel records, and forms, education leaders are replacing filing cabinets, Dropbox and Google Drive folders with automated recordkeeping solutions designed for K-12 schools and districts.

“I’m one of those people who does not like a lot of paper,” said Laura Nance, chief financial officer at St. Clair County School District in Ashville, Alabama. “Now, I have a centralized way to look things up without having to go find a piece of paper.”

Using Records — the K-12 recordkeeping solution from PeopleAdmin — St. Clair County and other districts have simplified some of their most frustrating and time-consuming talent management tasks … including contract renewals.

“With Records from PeopleAdmin, we didn’t have to stuff an envelope or copy a single piece of paper during contract renewals,” said Linda Kaiser, Ed.D., director of support staff at Park Hill School District in Kansas City, Missouri. “No overtime, no paper. Just a very simple and easy process.”

Jeremy Tabor, SPRHR, director of human resources at Burlington Community School District in Iowa, said that his district’s processes were likewise “very inefficient,” despite that theirs involved electronic databases and file-sharing.

“Our contract renewal process started with four or five people doing contracts, putting all the information into a database, doing mail merges, printing everything out, sending everything out by hand, and waiting to get it back,” he said. “Now, the system sends that information out, which has eliminated so much back and forth for us.”

He also noted that the system was easy for employees to learn. “My secretary, who did not have an HR background before coming into her position, and has never done anything with HR and HRIS, she was able to pick up everything fairly quickly in Records,” he said.

Kia Birdsong, human resources assistant at Del Mar Union School District in San Diego, California, was also able to quickly adapt to the workflows in Records. “I think I had a five-minute tutorial, and I got it,” she said. “It was easy.”

Design more effective professional development plans using student and educator performance data

‘We want our teachers to be able to do the best they can each and every day — and we want to give them the information, the tools and the resources to do that’

Working in silos never generates personal or professional growth.

Likewise, when performance reviews, student achievement and professional development are addressed independently, administrators and teachers don’t get the full story and aren’t able to maximize teaching outcomes. But technology is changing that by capturing key data to empower teacher development.

“Technology now provides us with student data and teacher data, which allows us to be evaluative and self-reflective during professional development planning,” said Lisa Andrejko, Ed.D., regional strategic advisor at PeopleAdmin and former teacher, principal, director of technology, and superintendent. “That has made a world of difference for tailoring offerings to meet an individual teacher’s needs.”

Using Perform — PeopleAdmin’s automated performance management solution — Maj. Jeremy Coombs, principal of Willamette Leadership Academy (WLA) in Eugene, Oregon, is implementing a plan to conduct performance evaluations that drive the professional development of teachers.

“The plan is to have myself or one of my other administrators do walk-throughs about five times a month, then do formal observations once a month, and formal evaluations twice a year,” he said. “We’ll also have some of our teachers do quick walk-throughs of each other, and — at the beginning and end of the year — they’ll look at their student learning goals and their performance to see what they need to adjust.”

With 18 teachers employed at WLA, Jeremy is committing to an ambitious 90 walk-throughs per month, but he says Perform makes it possible. “I go through with my iPad, and I just use the digital form. It’s quick and easy.”

While Perform allows school and district leaders to quickly gather meaningful data and information during evaluations, Thrive — PeopleAdmin’s professional development management solution — allows them to track teachers’ development activities … regardless of where they take place.

“Many schools and districts are offering online learning, in-person learning, and even giving teachers the opportunity to take professional development outside of the school,” said Nick Montgomery, chief research officer at PeopleAdmin. “With Thrive, you can track it all.”

Even though the solution tracks complex information from multiple sources, users still tout its simplicity.

“Thrive is very easy to use,” said Sandi Thompson, executive secretary of Lewis County Schools in West Virginia. “It’s very easy for me to add my people to the classes that we have had so far this year.”

When used together, Perform and Thrive can provide the data needed to create professional development plans based on each teacher’s needs and track the effectiveness of those plans over time.

“The outcome really is what matters most,” Lisa said, adding that school and district leaders must assess whether or not their professional development offerings are “affecting what’s happening with kids in the classroom.”

Jeremy Tabor, director of human resources at Burlington Community School District in Iowa, agreed. “That’s what it’s all about,” he said. “We want our teachers to be able to do the best they can each and every day — and we want to give them the information, the tools and the resources to do that.” 

What’s new: Customer Q&A tool now available on the PeopleAdmin Community

Did you notice the recent improvement to the PeopleAdmin Community? A new Q&A tab now gives you access to a searchable question-and-article database.

“This tab allows customers to ask a question of the Community, and the system will search both Knowledge articles and previously asked questions for anything similar,” said Courtney Langdon, Community manager at PeopleAdmin. “If a customer doesn’t see their exact questions, they can post it to the Community. Then, PeopleAdmin reps and other customers can answer.”

Once a posted question has been answered, the user who originally asked the question can indicate their favorite answer so other users can quickly find it.

“We think customers will really like this tool and find it even easier to use than the Knowledge base,” Courtney said.

Log in to the Community to use the new Q&A tab.

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Get the most out of your solution with these webinars

Are you taking advantage of PeopleAdmin’s Remote Workshop webinar series? This free webinar series offers tips and tricks to help you use your solution more effectively.

Save the date for these upcoming webinars:

End of the School Year in TalentEd Perform – Thursday, April 13, 1-1:45 p.m. Central time
Learn how to complete important end-of-year tasks in your Perform system, including closing out processes, reporting options, updating your staff list, updating forms and process, and setting up automations.

A Refresher on Forms in TalentEd Perform – Thursday, July 15, 1-1:30 p.m. Central time
Prepare to update your forms during this review that covers form types, building new forms, configuring editing permissions, and more.

Back to School in TalentEd Records – Thursday, July 27, 1-30 p.m. Central time
Get ready for the upcoming school year with a refresher on configuring documents, building your back-to-school checklist, customizing email notifications, and reporting.

Contact cem@peopleadmin.com to register or request more information.

Recent News & Articles

Facilitating truly seamless talent management

Managing talent at K-12 schools and districts is a time-consuming, documentation-heavy process that demands much from administrative staff … often leaving them frustrated or working overtime ...

Design more effective professional development plans using student and educator performance data

Likewise, when performance reviews, student achievement and professional development are addressed independently, administrators and teachers don’t get the full story and aren’t able to maximize teaching outcomes.

Load More Posts

Recent Podcasts

Identifying the most effective principal candidates

PeopleAdmin Chief Research Officer Nick Montgomery explains how you can predict which principal candidate is most likely to have a positive impact on your school. To learn how PeopleAdmin solutions can help improve your principal candidate assessment process, visit https://www.peopleadmin.com/principal-epi/.