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March 7, 2017

Assessment schedule summarized

Instructional Services Supervisor Katherine Little, Ph.D., summarized standardized assessments required by state and federal law. The Wisconsin Student Assessment System (WSAS) is a comprehensive statewide program designed to provide information about what students know and whether they can apply that knowledge in core academic areas. Assessments include:

  • Wisconsin Forward Exam assesses English language arts and mathematics for grades 3-8; science for grades 4 and 8; and social studies for grades 4, 8 and 10. Students take the assessment online.
  • ACT Aspire Early High School is a summative assessment that measures what students have learned in the areas of English, reading, math, science, and writing. The ACT Aspire scores predict how a student will perform on both the ACT and the ACT WorkKeys when they reach grade 11. It is administered to students in grades 9 and 10 in an online format.
  • ACT tests include reading, math, English, science and writing. The ACT with writing is a paper and pencil test.
  • ACT WorkKeys assesses applied mathematics, locating Information and reading for information. ACT WorkKeys system is a paper and pencil assessment that helps students understand how they can improve their career readiness skills and may help employers to determine whether individuals are qualified for positions.
  • All students take these assessments except for 1 percent of students with significant cognitive disabilities who are assessed with an alternate assessment, Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM).
  • ACCESS for ELLs® is designed to measure English language (EL) proficiency. It is a large-scale assessment based on the WIDA Consortium’s ELD Standards that form the core of Wisconsin’s approach to instructing and testing ELs.

In addition to the state-mandated exams, the district implements elementary benchmark assessments in reading, mathematics and writing, along with Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) assessments in grades 1-8. The Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening (PALS) is administered at primary grade levels. Alternative assessments and those for English Language Learners are also given.

Progress, priorities from tactical plans presented

School Board members were updated on progress made in the district’s strategic and tactical plans. Human Resources and Organizational Development Director John Roubik summarized progress made in each tactical area since the last report in September. Highlights of progress include:

Personalized and differentiated instruction practices

  • Personalized Learning Team (PLT) members developed recommendations for future work in personalized learning for review by the strategic planning committee.
  • The district’s Learning Environment Survey was prepared for distribution in early March. The PLT will analyze and summarize results of the survey for the strategic planning committee.
  • The PLT has showcased for colleagues how learner profiles and goal setting are being used successfully in the classroom to support student learning and achievement.

Universal screeners and progress monitoring tools to assess closing achievement gap efforts

  • Interventionists continue to work with individual students on specific strategies and progress monitoring tools.
  • Administrators continue to investigate data visualization and analysis software to allow for dynamic data analysis and reporting.
  • Administrators also provided Comprehensive Intervention Model (CIM) professional development for literacy coaches, interventionists and special education teachers in Guided Reading Plus, Comprehension Focus Groups, Writing Aloud and Interactive Writing.

Analysis of district enrollment, housing growth and building capacity trends

  • The Community Facilities Advisory Committee held four meetings to share information about projected community growth and its impact on future enrollments along with potential ideas for addressing this future growth.
  • Community, parent and staff survey data were provided to the committee.

Access to technology to strengthen teaching and learning

  • Phase I of the Chromebook expansion was completed which included additional devices for Templeton and identified teaching staff.
  • Face-to-face support sessions were held and on-line learning modules were created for all staff.
  • Phase II of the Chromebook expansion including ordering devices for the remaining staff will be implemented this summer.
  • Network wiring upgrades and network infrastructure will be completed over Spring Break.

Personnel action

In personnel business, the School Board:

  • accepted the resignation of Marcy Special Services paraprofessional Tyler Miles, effective March 3;
  • appointed Murrene Payton, Elizabeth Lodl and Nick Roth as Summer Opportunities assistant coordinators effective May 16; and Rosin Bergdoll as the Woodside school psychologist effective Aug. 23; and
  • reduced the Willow Springs Special Services paraprofessional position of Karen Satterfield from 63 to 0 percent effective March 3 because the position is no longer needed at that level.