Language Arts Success Team Meeting 


November 7, 2006


Members present:  Weber, Robertson, Scarola, Baltrusch, Priddle, Bruni, Langan, Kuhnhausen, Bettencourt, Harstad-Bell, McKee, Holst, Moran, Rothaar, Pelphrey, Young, Stuber


Team reviewed goals and proposed activities

Team reviewed assessment results

Team divided into groups by building to review their assessment results in conjunction with K-8 Writing Team recommendations, and to record reading/writing strengths and weaknesses.


Share out reading results.

Creslane strengths:  3rd grade reading has improved consistently over the last 3 years.  Learner outcomes are passed at 85% K-5.  5th grade vocabulary had the highest %.  Total reading in literature improved the most 3rd grade.  Also develop an interpretation.  From 3rd to 5th grades students increased by 9%.

MS strengths: Every student has reading.  Accelerated Reader=context clues, vocab can be used as LO.  SSR in Adv 2x/week.  Students ask to read.  SSR in social studies 6/8.  8th grade “science in the news.”  7/8 “health in the news.”  Looking forward to new library.

HS strengths:  Ability to read and come up with responses/critiques.  Cross-curriculum reading.  A direct relationship to reality and necessity.

Creslane weaknesses:  5th grade has declined.  Reading to perform a task is slightly lower in 3rd grade and 5th.  Lower scores in examine content and structure.  Fewer students pass the benchmarks compared to LO.  3% lower than state average.  High reader needs are not met.  Low reader needs are not being met. Lack curriculum and staff.

MS weaknesses:  7th grade missing Social Studies.  Taught how to read/locate article in newspaper.  Nonfiction magazines.  – idea = mags in Adv. 

HS weaknesses:  How students are tested.  Literary elements and devices (poetry).  Many students state they hate to read.

Share out writing results.

Creslane strengths:  Strong voice.  Kids like to write.  

MS strengths:  Teachers.  Flexibility in syllabi allow for needs of students.  Writing across the curriculum.

HS strengths.  Voice.  Word choice.  Technology, blessing or curse?

Creslane weaknesses:  Conventions.  Sentence fluency.  Males score lower at MS.  Organization.  Learner outcome matrices not matching state test outcomes.

MS weaknesses:  Length of periods.  Cross curriculum work not assessed.  Inconsistent in student directions (state assessments).  Students not applying their knowledge of rules.

HS weaknesses:  Conventions.  Organization.  Oral communication.  Audience participation.  Use of technology.

Share out conclusions.

Creslane Strengths:  We are meeting or exceeding reading scores for 80% of students.  Teachers are doing this with teacher-created materials.

Creslane weaknesses:  We are not meeting the needs of the highest/lowest students.  We have to make our own materials.  We need a common vocabulary.  Need to revise LO.

MS conclusions:  Are we LO kid or LO parent oriented?  Missing LO categories.  Do we send home LO results?  Why are LO on web if a teacher tool.  Time….needed!  assessment tools do not measure/reflect concept application to work.  Confusion on drafting.

HS conclusions:  If held accountable for testing, we have the appropriate help if we teach, not to the test, but how to take the test.  Technology can be a blessing or a curse (spec ed).  Speech is weak.  ESL population is growing.  Writing and reading requires a community of teachers and integrated curriculum.  LO need revision and simplification.  Professional development tied to reading/writing.


Discussion was held on our “next steps” with respect to design of LO and assessments.  Next meeting we will: consider the LO and assessments, best practices in writing and language arts and review the 4J LA adoption rubric.  Helpful reading for next time:  WritingNext a paper from the National Writing Project…look for it online at 


Our next meeting will be 1:00 p.m. on November 15th


Total meeting time:  2.5 hours.  Cumulative committee time to date:  2.5 hours