Monthly School Board Report
With five days of school under our belt WIS is off to a great start. Students filled the halls with enthusiasm and smiles on August 29th.
Our new certificated and classified staff are off and running. Their quick acclimation is a result of the extremely helpful staff that work within our building. Both of our new classroom teachers have commented that they don't just have one mentor, but have a building full of mentors.
We are very proud of our accomplishments and scores as they relate to last spring's MSP testing. The gains made are a tribute to the hard work of our staff as well as their commitment to our Schoolwide Plan and professional focus.
Academic Intervention Block:
This year we were able to expand services within our academic intervention block. This is a 45 minute block of time at each grade level during which students participate in various intervention, instruction, and/or extension settings. We worked particularly hard to create as much additional instruction for students in math and reading as possible without a student missing instruction in core subjects. Students will be working in homeroom on inquiry, which is a form of research. Others will receive extra instruction in reading, math, their Individualized Education Plan, or other services to better help them reach state standards.
Standards Based Grading:
Prior to the first day of school WIS staff completed two full days of professional development. Our focus during the training was standards based grading. Our standards based committee started the work to make this transition happen three years ago. Standards based report cards provide parents with specific grading information that is aligned with the learning standards developed by our state. One of the positive outcomes of a standards based grading system is our ability to provide parents more detailed information pertaining to their child's progress. In a traditional letter based grading system parents are frequently left wondering exactly what a "B" in math on their child's report card means. A "B" grade tells parents that their child performed above average, but it also leaves parents wondering what aspects of math their student was excelling in, and what aspects of math they were struggling with. A standards based report card provides parents detailed information outlining how the student is progressing in relationship to grade level standards. For example, student's math grades will now reflect state standards. At the 5th grade level those on the report card will include multi-digit division, adding and subtracting fractions, geometry/measurement, algebraic relationships, statistics/probability, and problem solving (4th and 6th grades will be similar). As a result parents will have a much clearer understanding of which state standards their child understands and which standards need to continue to be an area of focus.
Open House has been scheduled for Monday, September 17th at 6:00. Chris will start the evening by addressing parents and students in the gym. Following the opening address each grade level will be highlighted for 15 minutes. This will allow parents who have children in multiple grade levels an equal opportunity to meet all of their children's teachers. Students will also participate in a scavenger hunt. The scavenger hunt requires students to formally introduce their parents to each of their teachers. Prizes will be distributed for completed scavenger hunts.