CURRICULUM DIRECTOR REPORT
The Curriculum focus is transitioning from our Social Studies area this year to next year’s Fine Arts and Foreign Language departments. We are in the process of selecting members for next year’s curriculum review committee. Social Studies will have its final meeting next week.
As the year draws to a close we are getting some feedback on TESA (the state testing program we are using this year which allows our students to test on-line). TESA has a couple of advantages over the previous paper/pencil audits in that students can see their results immediately and they can re-test if they choose to do so. Another TESA advantage for us is that we can get composite results as soon as each student submits a test.
Here is a time-line regarding our curriculum model:
1. In 2000-2001 the district engaged in strategic planning. One outcome of the planning was a goal to develop the district’s scope and sequence, learner outcomes, and assessment items for all content areas at all grade levels. In addition, an overall district evaluation program was encoded in board policy.
2. In 2001-2002 the first curriculum development classes were begun wherein staff were grouped by content area and the strategic goal was implemented. By year’s end many content areas K-12 were designed and cataloged.
3. 2002-2003 saw the first full year where some content areas were taught using the learner outcomes as an outline for instruction planning, and was also the first year where some assessment data was collected and evaluated. The rough edges were many, and the learning curve steep but the initial data returns were none-the-less illuminating and many adjustments were made in content and process.
4. 2003-2004 is the first year that we tried to get all learner outcomes and assessments recorded core content area into the matrix system. For those teachers and departments who were submitting data for the second year, the refinements were modest and the 1st year data was already yielding results in teaching strategy if not also student success. For those who engaged in data collections for the 1st time this year, we experienced the similar angst as those who made the initial plunge in 2002-2003.
5. 2004-2005 will be our 2nd full year of collections from all core areas. In addition, a number of other content areas will also be collected for the 1st time.
Our TESA results for reading in Creslane and MS are running at 70% at this time. Math in both schools is running at 60%, an improvement. HS Science is running at 58% today and writing could be as high as 84% for sophomores. While we are showing a strong correlation between the scores with engaged learning sites and longitudinal data collections other factors are at work. MS for example has been immersed with other curriculum development practices and professional development in the past three years, and no doubt benefit from their new reading program. I cannot cite everything every teacher or work site did to contribute to our improved achievement save to say they have worked hard and improvised in depressed economic situations to overcome the obstacles in their path(s). I am very proud of our teachers, support staff and administrators for Preparing Students for Success.
We should have our final TESA scores early this summer. Our matrix results will be compiled over the summer and will be in a longitudinal format at the August School Board Meeting.
Dr. Rick Stuber