Coaches to the Rescue: Nuts for NOCTI and PA Standards

Posted on Categories NOCTI Prep

The intent of this activity was to develop a school-wide initiative to improve NOCTI scores while aligning PA Common Core Standards into daily instructional processes. Beginning in 2012, the instructional coaches on staff at Monroe Career & Technical Institute worked individually and in small groups with CTE instructors several times a year to provide professional development. They offered assistance with reviewing and interpreting program-level NOCTI data and discussing how to use research-based instructional strategies for content reading during theory lessons. The instructional strategies include: Vocabulary Strategies, Reading Strategies, Writing Strategies, Calculator Workshops, Cooperative Group Instructional Strategies, CCS Standards of Mathematical Practice, and NOCTI Data Analysis.

As a result of this effort, teachers have made NOCTI review a regular part of their weekly instruction for all students. They schedule “calculator workshops” for students and post essential vocabulary throughout the classroom. Teachers are responsible for analyzing data and creating a NOCTI Improvement Plan which is updated each year to reflect the current areas of need. In 2014-15, teachers are using the data to identify areas for the Student Learning Objective (SLO).

Origin / Implementation

In 2011, administrators and instructional coaches examined NOCTI Blueprints and pre-test data to identify areas for improvement. They observed that most students were doing much better on the performance part of the NOCTI compared to the written section.

In 2012, they launched an initiative with the objective of increasing academic instruction within CTE classroom activities and improving NOCTI written test scores to 90% or more students at the Proficient or Advanced level.

Each year the coaches have strengthened the coaching relationships previously established through confidential and relevant individualized professional development that spans the entire school year. The program is ongoing.

Results / Impact

Based on observation of students during the test, instructional coaches have noticed that students seem to be more focused during the test, they have less test anxiety, they are more comfortable use a calculator, and they were interested in knowing their scores.

NOCTI scores increased and have been 90% or better since 2012 when the program was implemented.

NOCTI Post-Test Scores % Advanced and Proficient
















Monroe Career & Technical Institute
Michelle Bonser, Instructional Coach