The Training and Technical Assistance Center (TTAC) at George Mason University (GMU)

... is part of the statewide system of Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) TTACs. Specialists provide professional development that focuses on improving academic outcomes for students with disabilities through targeted technical assistance (TA) to schools. The goal is to help school personnel gain knowledge and skills to prepare students with disabilities for graduation with a diploma or completion of an appropriate program, and successfully prepare them for post-secondary education, employment, and independent living.

TTAC at GMU in Region 4 provides assistance to the following school divisions:



TTAC News Brief

Formative assessment is the process of “frequent, interactive assessments of students’ progress and understanding to identify learning needs and adjust teaching appropriately.” (Looney, 2001, cited in Wiliam, 2011 & Knight, 2013) Why use formative assessment? “Major reviews on the effects of formative assessment indicate that it might be one of the more powerful weapons in a teacher’s arsenal.” (Marzano, 2007) It “provides a way for teachers to dramatically increase engagement”, “. . . increases students’ belief that they can succeed” and allows “. . .teachers to see their students’ progress.”
(Knight, 2013)

March 2015


“Instructional coaches are essential for professional learning. Coaches help teachers take ideas and practices they are learning and bring them to life. Instructional coaches partner with teachers in respectful humane conversations so teachers can choose and implement research-based teaching practices that will help students learn more effectively.”

(adapted from Knight, Unmistakable Impact, 2011)

February 2015



Special Opportunity!

Visit a Co-Teaching Demonstration Site in Region 4

The Virginia Department of Education has identified 27 co-teaching demonstration sites through the Excellence in Co-Teaching Initiative, including 6 at middle schools and high schools in Region 4. These demonstration sites provide opportunities for co-teaching partners throughout the state to observe inclusive practices in action. The co-teaching teams at the demonstration sites share their co-planning, co-instructing, and co-assessing practices that support successful outcomes for all students.

For more information about the Excellence in Co-Teaching Initiative, or to arrange a visit to one of these model sites, please contact Dr. Lynn Wiley, Director, VDOE TTAC at GMU at or 703.993.4496.