Successful Transitions

Elementary to Middle School Success

At-Risk for Failure

Struggling 5th graders are continuing to struggle in 6th grade and the transition to middle school is proving to be a hindrance for success.

The structure of middle school with the constant changing of classes and work load are an impediment to growth of at-risk students.

At-Risk for Success

But what if we changed the climate for at-risk 5th graders and engaged the support team of at-risk students to help them be successful. Working with the staff of their elementary school to identify those that struggle and work with them in a summer bridge program to give them the tools they need to be successful in the middle school environment.

Searching for Success

Why worry about struggling 5th graders as they enter the middle school? If they struggled in elementary they will continue to struggle in middle school and never find success. The "at-risk" population tends to remain steady from year to year. Students that cannot find success in one grade, will not be able to find success in the next grade.
As the ESS (Extended School Services) Coordinator, in our building I am constantly in contact with parents who are searching for answers to help their child with school work and keep up with the demands of middle school.

Data, Data Everywhere!!

STAR Data is used at our school to determine placement in intervention classes, future grade level placement and special education placement. For my test group of 6th graders, we had the following:

  • Reading: The average STAR score for my test group was a 647.95. The winter average was a 717 and the spring score was a 717. This was an average growth of 71.2 points. 7 students deceased their score, but the average growth was above the predicted growth of 67.3 points.
  • Math: The average STAR score for the same test groups was a 693.1. The winter average was a 760.2 and the spring score was an average of 781.0. This resulted in an average growth of 69.3. This was just above the predicted/expected growth of 67.5.

Can We Continue?

The summer bridge program was an idea founded from need. We know that the incoming 6th grader is scared and intimidated. With very little effort and resources, we can change the attitude of our at risk population and pave their way to success.