ORE Monday Notes

September 7-11

Release of School Wide EOG Assessment Data

I am going to begin by quoting the opening statement from the book Results Now by Mike Schmoker:

Imagine a time in the near future...when people speak matter-of-factly about how dropout rates and the achievement gap are inexorably shrinking, when record numbers of students are entering college, and when professors are noticing how much more intellectually fit each year's freshmen have become. Imagine palpable, irrepressible hope emerging in our poor and urban schools.

All of these improvements result from a new candor that has emerged in education and a willingness to see that historic improvement isn't about "reform" but something much simpler: a tough, honest self-examination of the prevailing culture and practices of public schools, and a dramatic turn toward a singular and straightforward focus on instruction.

Oak Ridge, we have before us an opportunity! Our results from this past year have now been officially released. Our school received a B grade. I shared this data with you at our opening meeting so there should be no surprises. And as I said in that meeting - our students continue to take and pass the EOG tests with high levels of proficiency (our overall Proficiency Composite was 82.8% - this is certainly higher than the district average and something we can be proud of - but it is a decrease from the previous year and well below our target goal). The unfortunate and very realistic piece of critical information that we have to address as a staff is that we are a school that did Not Meet Growth. We are one of only 23 schools in our district identified in this way (out of more than 125 schools). We also have large gaps in our racial subgroups and in our EDS (Economically Disadvantaged) and SWD (Students with Disabilities) subgroups as well. It is time to deeply examine the instruction that is taking place in our classrooms and understand that quality classroom instruction and quality teaching is the number one indicator of gains in student achievement. It is a research based statement that the teaching and learning that is taking place in our classrooms matters more than anything else when it comes to student growth and achievement. I urge you to read Results Now and continue what I have witnessed so far this school year - collaborative conversations in your PLCs about this concept of increasing the quality of instruction that is taking place in each of our classrooms. I am hearing you discuss how to increase the rigor, how to incorporate higher levels of questioning throughout all of your lessons, and how to increase students writing across all content areas. It is these deep and provocative conversations and planning sessions that are critical components as we move forward towards becoming not only a school that receives high marks due to overall proficiency (we are working towards a target goal of 87% this school year) but also a school that this year EXCEEDS GROWTH! If you are on the bus with me towards this goal scream, "YES" - right now as you read this! Go ahead - do it!!! Oak Ridge - we have before us an opportunity - let's do this!!!

Daily Schedule

Please make sure that your Daily Schedule is now posted right outside your classroom door and that you are "tight" in implementing the core instructional blocks on a consistent basis. The expectation is that you teach the instructional blocks as they are outlined on your schedule.

I Can Statements

Please make sure that your I Can statements are aligned with the Standards that you are currently teaching. Please make sure they are posted in a large format at the beginning of each core instructional block. It is imperative that more than just a "posting" of the I Can statement occur. It is essential that teachers (all teachers - not just regular education K-5)open the core instructional block by going over the I Can statement and setting the purpose for learning. Below is a picture of how this can be done. I know that some of you post I Can statements for the entire day - some for the entire week - in a chart format. This is okay but you should then remove the I Can from the chart and place it prominently in front of the students for that particular lesson so that everyone in the room knows exactly what the purpose for learning of that particular lesson is. These I Can statements should be in your lesson plans as well. As you close the lesson you should return to the I Can statement to close the lesson and use this as an opportunity for formative assessment.
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Student Work in the Hallway and Classrooms

The classroom and school is inviting and student centered when student work is displayed. Please make sure that students and visitors are able to determine the learning purpose/Standard for the student work that is displayed. Below are some examples from our own hallways that set the example for what is expected when you display student work.

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Important Curriculum Information

  • 3rd-5th Grade classrooms are nearing the end of the District Wide Pre-Assessments in ELA and Math. Teachers should visit their NCEDCloud - IIS Icon - School Net to view student reports and the breakdown of their Pre-Assessment Data by Standards Mastery for both tests. In the Student Report section - if a student is not showing a report, we will need to know to rescan their bubble sheet. After the end of next week we will not be allowed to rescan so please get us this information by Tuesday afternoon. At Tuesday's Staff Meeting we will review School Net and viewing reports in more detail.

  • Fourth and Fifth grade teachers were given a DIBELS Manual.

  1. Students will read from this book.
  2. Teacher will mark on the books provided by Mrs. Stoltz during their PLCs.
  3. If teachers feel they need to Progress Monitor a student, Mrs. Stoltz has the materials to track this data and you should see Mrs. Stoltz if you are needing to Progress Monitor in this area.

  • For Grades K-3 - below is the completion report generated from MClass! The report indicates that we are progressing nicely in our completion of these assessments. Please remember the following points:

  1. Remember to sync at the end of each day.
  2. Remember to only TRC on the books from the list.
  3. DO NOT use notebook paper for the written response. Use the worksheets given at our PLCs and any extras can be provided by requesting them from Mrs. Debbie (she will stick them in your boxes).
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New Teachers Coming

This afternoon we received notification from Human Resources that due to our increasing enrollment we will be adding two additional teachers. One will go to Kindergarten and one will go to 3rd Grade. We do not yet know who will be coming or when. As we learn more information we will communicate the details with everyone. We are very happy that our teachers on these two grade levels will receive some relief from the large class sizes they have had these first 10 days of school. Our Master Schedule for Specials and Lunch already has spots for both of these new classes so we will plug those classes in and not have to make adjustments to the Master Schedule. The third grade classroom will occupy room 405 and the Kindergarten classroom will move into room 623. Thanks for our patience as we work through the details of these assignments over the next 10 or so days.

Tuesday, Sept. 8

  • Day 5 - K-2 will have specials
  • IST will meet in the Conference Room - teachers who are on the agenda have been invited
  • Curriculum Staff Meeting for all Certified Staff in the Media Center following dismissal -in addition to Mrs. Stoltz presenting the new Prioritized Standards, the Science Vertical Team will also present Science Fair information to all teachers.

Wednesday, Sept. 9

  • Day 6 - 3-5 will have Specials
  • 3-5th Grade Fitness Testing begins in PE
  • BOGs Test in Grade 3
  • Locklear and Boggess - Grade 5 will give the Science Pre-Assessment

Thursday, Sept. 10

  • Day 1- K-2 will have Specials and K-2 teachers will meet in PLCs

Friday, Sept. 11

  • Day 2 - 3-5 will have Specials and 3-5 teachers will meet in PLCs
  • Patriot Day - Wear Red, White, Blue to celebrate this special day
  • All Cumulative Folders should be reviewed by core classroom teacher by this day
  • Sub Notebook should be complete and on teacher's desk by this date - see content page in your staff handbook
  • Textbook Count is due to Mr. Smith