The Common, Edition #3
August 6th, 2022
September 9, 2022
Dear Nashoba Families,
Last spring, community members joined their school councils to examine Portrait of a Graduate competencies and determine which competencies best reflected what we want of our students upon graduation from Nashoba Regional High School. The effort included the thoughts of students, staff, and community members. Last June, I announced the competencies that rose to the top of our priority list, and they were approved by the School Committee at our June 22, 2022 meeting.
Over the summer, we worked with Battelle for Kids to produce our Portrait of a Nashoba Graduate materials and you can view them in the Teaching and Learning section of the district website.
Core competencies are the intellectual, social and emotional skills that support the development of academic skills and acquisition of content knowledge. They help learners expand their perspectives in order to understand the communities they live in and the depths of their interests. Competencies are not curriculum standards. Rather, they are skills that help learners deepen their understanding of content standards. In our work this year, educators will identify the core competencies within our curriculum and develop lessons and activities that help students grow in their minds and hearts.
Thank you for participating in this work.
News from the Department of Teaching and Learning
This week, we shared information about our new districtwide approach to assessment and the use of universal screening measures for reading and mathematics to further support a more systematic approach to our overall assessment methodology at Nashoba.
Students in grades K-9 will be assessed in mathematics using Star Math, and students in grades K-8 will be assessed in reading using Star Early Literacy/Star Reading. Star Math and Star Reading are adapative ssessments within Renaissance Learning, an online assessment platform. Assessments will be administered as universal screeners three times per year (fall, winter, spring). The use of Renaissance and Star Assessments within our assessment schedule further ensures that the requirements for universal early literacy screening as outlined in the Massachusetts Dyslexia Guidelines (2020) are either met or exceeded by our district screening measures.
We are very excited about the potential Star Assessment brings to our district. Through the use of Star, Nashoba educators will be able to capture real time data and use this data in conjunction with classroom data to inform targeted instructional decisions for their class and for their students. As we move forward, we will be excited to share the results of Star data with families. With that, it is important to note that when teachers do share information about student progress with families from Star, data will be shared alongside other data points and classroom measures. Star will be an important piece - albeit one piece - set within a larger context of assessment data over time.
Teaching and Learning will continue to keep families updated about the districtwide implementation of Star Assessments as we move forward. Please be on the lookout for further communication.
This Week at Nashoba
First graders using pattern blocks to explore during Work Places... the result? Students build rockets AND ask if you can figure out their system.
There's nothing quite like that first, "Whoa" moment in the science lab!
7th Grade instrumentalists in action
Superintendent Downing speaking to Center School staff about the district's new Strategic Plan
Together, we inspire and challenge all learners to reach their unique potential and become active contributors to their community.