Partnering with the Idaho State Department of Education (ISDE) to:
Improve Literacy Instruction
Region 17 CC produced two sets of evidence-based training materials to build the literacy instruction skills of educators across Idaho. One set focuses on developing the academic content and literacy skills of English learner students, while the other aims to increase reading ability and engagement for students in grades 4–8. We are updating these materials to align with revised state content standards and keep the resources relevant and useful for educators in the state.
Support Federal Programs
ISDE’s Federal Programs team is charged with meeting regulations under the Every Student Succeeds Act. Region 17 CC helps the team connect program-level inputs, outputs, and outcomes and monitor the progress of each federal education program active in Idaho. In addition, we support the federal programs director in monitoring district-level use of American Rescue Plan funds.
Implement the Science of Reading
In 2021, ISDE launched the Striving to Meet Achievement in Reading Together (SMART) program to advance K–3 teacher knowledge in the science of reading. To support this statewide initiative, Region 17 CC operates the Reading Coach Academy, which provides ongoing professional learning to school-based instructional coaches so they can help teachers more effectively.
Provide Trauma-Informed Professional Develolpment
Recognizing that schools play an important role in supporting the mental and emotional well-being of students and families, ISDE will offer school nurses training in trauma-informed practice. Region 17 CC is working with ISDE to develop materials and deliver the training to an initial cohort of state-funded nurses. With these materials, ISDE will have the capacity and knowledge to expand the training to more school nurses across Idaho.
Partnering with the Montana Office of Public Instruction (OPI) to:
Establish a Through-Year Assessment System
OPI plans to develop and scale an innovative system that aligns assessments with local learning models and cultural contexts, deepens student learning, and more consistently measures growth throughout the school year. Region 17 CC will review best practices for establishing such a system, engage partners to ensure test items reflect local contexts, and build capacity for data literacy and data-driven instruction.
Strengthen the Educator Workforce
Transforming the educator workforce to meet the current and future needs of students has never been more important. Montana’s Teacher Residency Demonstration project takes a promising approach to address teacher shortages and provide top-quality preparation and support for future teachers. Region 17 CC continues to support program implementation, including through the development of an evaluation plan.
Regional and National Projects
Connecting Rural Educators
The Northwest Rural Innovation and Student Engagement (NW RISE) Network brings together teachers and leaders from some of the region’s most isolated and remote communities. Through regular convenings, members share their expertise with peers in similar contexts to develop useful solutions. A network of schools helping schools—especially isolated ones—can raise achievement and increase student engagement by sharing relevant, practical advice that works for rural communities.
Developing Process Improvements
We are collaborating with ISDE and OPI to develop a process to review and revise state academic standards. The process includes forming and facilitating workgroups of teachers, administrators, families, and other community members charged with tasks such as reducing redundancies, simplifying language, and prioritizing concepts.
Participating in National Workgroups
Region 17 CC partners with the National Comprehensive Center and other regional CCs to support states in addressing immediate policy and practice issues. Specifically, we provide guidance and expertise in workgroups focused on bolstering states’ capacity to:
- Improve education for Native students
- Accelerate student learning using American Rescue Plan funds
- Strengthen and diversify the educator workforce