Due to COVID-19, professional learning opportunities may be cancelled. OPI staff will make every attempt to keep the OPI Learning Opportunities current and accurate. Please see https://covid19.mt.gov/ for additional details impacting events.

ENROLLMENT OPENS Feb. 9, 2020 – STREAM: Describing Data 4-7 (Mar. 1-21, 2020)

This 3-week module explores how data and statistics concepts are developed in grades 4 through 7. Participants will: gain familiarity with the data and statistics standards and learning progressions; identify statistical vs. non-statistical questions and scenarios; learn how to select appropriate representations for data and appropriate statistical measure to describe a data set; practice data analysis and statistical summary on a real data set drawn from an elementary school setting.

15 Renewal Units

Open enrollment – February 9, 2020

Visit STREAM: Describing Data (4-7) on the Teacher Learning Hub to enroll

2020 OPI Data and Assessment Conference

The Montana Office of Public Instruction (OPI) has set the dates for the 2020 OPI Data and Assessment Conference. The conference will be held in Helena, MT at the Delta Hotel on Monday and Tuesday, January 13 and 14, 2020.

More information can be found on the OPI Data and Assessment Conference website

Tech Time!: Forms with a Splash of Classroom

Google Forms can self-grade, offer immediate feedback, put data into graphics, be locked, and transform your formative and summative assessments. This session will focus on Google Forms but we will incorporate a splash of Google Classroom. You will leave having created a form, delivered a practice form to peers and deciphered data. This is intended for beginners to Google Forms.

How to Enroll: Visit the Region III registration website

Meaningful Participation in Statewide Assessments

This training focuses on increasing educator knowledge about federal requirements and options for participation in statewide assessments through the lens of ensuring that students with disabilities are able to meaningfully participate in the assessments required under ESSA. This training will cover how meaningful participation can be accomplished through ensuring that students have appropriate accessibility supports and accommodations and that those supports are selected systematically, based on student need. This training would be suitable for districts and schools to improve participation rates and performance of students with disabilities in statewide assessments.

Audience: Special education teachers, special education directors, system test coordinators, principals, and superintendents


  • Describe the purpose of statewide assessments for federal accountability under ESSA.
  • Describe participation requirements for statewide assessments.
  • Describe participation options for students with disabilities in statewide assessments.
  • Identify the appropriate usage of data from statewide assessments.
  • Understand shifts in thinking about accessibility for statewide assessments from accommodation based to universal design for learning and supports for all students with accessibility needs.
  • Implement a systematic data-based decision-making process in the selection of accessibility supports for statewide assessments.
  • Identify supports and accommodations for statewide assessments that meet individual student needs and reflect the supports and accommodations provided to students in classroom instruction and assessments.
  • Ensure accessibility of instruction and assessments by aligning the implications, supplemental aids and services, and statewide assessment accommodations and supports sections of the IEP.
  • Describe accessibility supports for each statewide assessment (ACT, Smarter Balanced, MSAA, Science, ACCESSfor ELLs)
  • Describe and implement a process to ensure that the accommodations and supports documented in the IEP are provided to students on statewide assessments.
  • Describe and implement standardized administration of accommodated testing sessions including following test specific accommodation protocols (scribing, read aloud).

Presenter Info:

Yvonne Field is the Assessment and Accountability Specialist in the Student Support Services Division at the Office ofPublic Instruction. She has worked at the OPI for almost 7 years; first as the assessment specialist for the MontCASspecial population assessments (ACCESS for ELLs and the Multi State Alternate Assessment) and currently as the assessment and accessibility specialist. She has a background in post-secondary special education and taught special education in grades 3-5 in Charlotte Mecklenberg Schools in Charlotte, North Carolina.

How to Enroll: Visit the Meaningful Participation in Statewide Assessments registration website

Balanced Assessments

The Office of Public Instruction’s Assessment Division is offering a one-day workshop on assessment. The focus of this workshop will be on balanced assessments with the first half of the training emphasizing summative assessments to include an overview of statewide assessments, new additions (including the new Science assessment), protocol, and how to access data for decision-making processes. The latter half of the offered training takes a deep look into using interim assessments in the classroom via the Digital Library, which has been expanded this summer, complete with lesson plans available to address specific learning outcomes.

Topics to be covered:

  • Overview of Statewide Assessments
  • Assessment Accessibility and Test Security
  • What’s new and Accessing the Data
  • Interim Assessments and the Digital Library
  • Hand-scoring Interim Assessments
  • Using Interim Data to Guide Best Practices in the Classroom

This workshop will be led by OPI staff from the Assessment Division. Six (6) hours of OPI Renewal Units will be awarded to participants. One hour will be provided for lunch (on your own).

How to Enroll: Visit the Balanced Assessments registration webpage

Reshaping Special Education: Creation Connections to Curriculum through IEPs

Over the years, IEPs have evolved into documents that too often contain little useful information about how a student is progressing in the general education curriculum. Meanwhile, they have become burdensome to write and a few too many classroom teachers regard them as irrelevant.

Participants will explore the implications for accessing the general education curriculum for students with disabilities. Participants will focus on the use of data and curriculum standards to guide decisions throughout the IEP process including:

• Determining present levels of performance;
• Establishing challenging and measurable goals and benchmarks; and
• Progress monitoring of IEPs.

Participants will learn how to identify relevant sources of educational data in order to develop IEPs, identify a variety of progress monitoring strategies, develop relevant student profiles, and articulate the impact of disability in ways that enhance the classroom teacher’s ability to support a student. Finally, participants will learn how to establish baseline information for present levels of academic achievement and functional performance, project the progress a student is expected to achieve in a year, write measurable goals that address academic, behavioral, related service and/or transition issues, and develop criteria for assessing educational benefit.

Please bring an IEP with you to use in workshop activities. 

About the Presenter: Carol Kosnitsky is the nationally recognized and popular author of IEP Goals That Make a Difference: An Administrator’s Guide to Improving the Process (2018, LRP Publications). This book is used widely by teachers as well as administrators. As a distinguished special education consultant with more than 35 years in the field, Carol provides consultation and professional development services across the country, traveling from her home base in New England.

How to Enroll: Visit Reshaping Special Education: Creating Connections to Curriculum through IEPs on the Professional Learning website

Computer Science in the Classroom: Joy and Beauty of Data (Jul. 21-26, 2019)

The 2-credit course is intended for 7-12th grade teachers who want to learn how to incorporate computational ideas in the classroom. Teachers who take the course will be introduced to the broad area of data science and will extend their knowledge of the Python programming language. High school teachers who complete the course may be eligible to teach CSCI 127, The Joy and Beauty of Data, as a dual enrollment course. The course builds upon the pre-requisite course, “Joy and Beauty of Computing.”

Support for Montana teachers is available. For more information and how to apply, please contact Diana Paterson, MSSE Associate Director.  See contact information below.

Western Montana 2019 Summer Institute

The Western Montana CSPD is offering a Summer Institute with a variety professional development opportunities June 11-13, 2019 in Polson, MT.

Some of the opportunities include:

  • The Development of Reading and Writing (K-2)
  • High Impact Math Instruction (K-12)
  • Understanding Conflict and Communication
  • Preschool Curriculum
  • Restorative Justice
  • Raising Student Achievement
  • Data Management and Tech Integration

…and much more!

How to Enroll: Visit Summer Institute 2019

Formative Assessment With Google Forms

Google Forms serve as a digital means for collecting all kinds of data and processing it in a way that makes it easier to measure growth, change, etc… The goal of this course is to facilitate the use of these tools to help promote success for teachers, and most importantly students. This course is designed to take you through the process of creating several different types of forms, collecting results, and manipulating data into usable reports. The course will consist of online modules based on topics. Participants will be engaged in learning about the many different aspects of Google Forms and how they can be implemented within their school. Participants taking the course for credit will be required to complete all modules. This course is intended for multiple audiences.

WMCSPD Summer Institute

3 Days of FREE High Quality Professional Development in Polson
Sessions include…
Classroom Management ER – Dr Linda Karges- Bone,
MTSS – Wayne Callender
Reading & Writing – Carrie Cole
DATA Collection & Management & Distribution – Rob Reynolds
Para Supervision Training – Barb Stimson.
Sp Ed Law – Linda Maas & Melissa Morris
Para Training – Barb Stimson
Proloquo Training – Leah Gardner
MATH intervention strategies- Rhonda Birnie