Case Study for Franklin Elementary School Grades K-6

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1 Case Study for Franklin Elementary School Grades K-6 Belleville District 118 Belleville, IL February 2003

2 Franklin Elementary School Key Takeaways Catalysts for Change 4Belleville school district 118 has maintained rigorous assessment practices for 25+ years. This far exceeds the state s mandated assessment testing. Belleville district 118 adopted a strong policy of student achievement with no excuses and this belief system has been internalized by the faculty and passed down from school administration to administration 4Informal school competition promotes creativity to achieve additional student improvement within district budget constraints 4Switch from IGAP to ISAT caused a assessment misalignment. Forced schools to adjust to new testing format Challenges Overcome 4Constant assessment test adjustment to align with state standards 4Continued communication of school improvement plan and assessment test results to parents 4Parental involvement in school activities 4District initiative to provide all students with the tools required for successful learning (safe environment, easy access to school, appropriate clothing, nutrition, etc.). This need must be met daily in order for schools to be successful Key Factors for School Success 4Administration: 4Historical analysis of demographic and social data (poverty, drug use, mobility, etc.) 4Strong relationship with teacher s union 4Principal: - Creative professional development practices - Strong support from community and parents - Dedication and passion of teachers - Solid leadership from superintendent s office - Valuable analysis of assessment data by assistant superintendent - Moderate class size constantly smoothed and maintained across the school district 4Teachers: - Strong peer mentoring - Strong in-service training supported by administration and faculty - Processes leverages from Accelerated School program - Grade specific collaboration and training - Experienced teachers (several 20+ years) - Reading Recovery Program is highly effective tool to prevent costly remediation later in students studies (1 st and 2 nd grades) -1-

3 Franklin Elementary School Profile School Profile ISAT performance 4Grades K-6 4Five year average: 150 students, 72% low income, 25% student mobility, 96% student attendance, 50-62% white, 34-48% black, 1% Hispanic 4Eight teachers in One teacher per grade. One school-wide Title 1 teacher. One special education teacher - 2.5% teacher mobility rates over the last three years - Class size is capped at 30 for each elementary grade level. Classroom smoothing is performed to ensure correct student numbers. - Recruiting process Bid process within district to fill new positions Strong university network to tap highly qualified candidates School district has extremely low mobility rate All hiring decision initiated by principal but finalized by superintendent's office 4Principal Jeff Dosier - 4 years as Principal at Franklin. 8 years in Belleville district Technology Profile 4Third Grade Fourth Grade 4Fifth Grade 4Each classroom has three dedicated PCs. Each teacher has dedicated PC. External computer lab has 20+ PCs with internet access. Computer lab is funded and staffed by Americorp resources. 4Full-time, onsite IT coordinator at school and roving district IT coordinator providing necessary support and guidance. 4Study Island, Accelerated Reader, Reading Counts, Making the Grade software programs used by Franklin 4 communication extensive for teachers and administration. Most communication handled via . 4Web based report card in progress. Allows parents, teachers, other relevant parties to view student grades online 4Teachers attended a six week on site technology training course arranged by district technology coordinator R M W S SS R M W

4 Franklin Elementary School Data Collection and Analysis, Standard 4Iowa Test of Basic Skills: Data Capture and Analysis Tests taken by grade 6 at beginning of year. ITBS results used by asst. superintendent, principal and teachers to determine curriculum adjustments 4Cognitive Abilities Test Test taken by grade 2 and grade 5 at beginning of school year. Results used to gauge progress and curriculum effectiveness 4ISAT analysis 4Accelerated Reader Reading comp. and vocab. assessments administered and recorded on PCs in every class room (grades 1-6) AR program Initiated and funded by Belleville district. Teachers encouraged to have all students use AR at least once a quarter. Principal Barnes evaluates AR printout results every quarter. Parents given copy as well. AR linked to city library. AR books available for checkout from city library 4Teacher generated performance tracking Teachers collect section test results during each grading period. Certain teachers capture data in computer and perform simple trend analysis. Teachers rely on individual evaluation to make daily classroom changes to affect student progress. Daily changes are decentralized and autonomous from principal Implementation of Data Analysis 4End of school year meeting (May) reviews available data analysis and proposes curriculum changes 4Curriculum committee meetings conducted every six weeks to review progress and recommend modifications 4Students re-aligned into teaching groups based on progress or identified deficiencies 4Teachers have daily planning meetings with peers to test new teaching ideas based on grade book analysis -3-

5 Franklin Elementary School Data Collection and Analysis, Exceptional Data Capture and Analysis 4District generated assessments Instructional Monitoring System (IMS) developed and maintained at a district level. The IMS is implemented every spring and is scored, evaluated and distributed to principals and teachers by the assistant superintendent and his staff. IMS results reviewed at a school level by the principal, special education and general teachers 4District generated pre tests - given to all students at beginning of the school year to tweak curriculum at grade/classroom level 4Reading Recovery Teacher data - Title I teacher tests first grade students on reading skills, evaluates results and creates action plans for students in need. Franklin school promotes detailed reading skill data gathering and tracking throughout the term of the reading recovery program. Pre and post program tests given for comparison and analysis 4Study Island - Study Island offers specialized programs designed to improve student scores on state mandated assessment tests. The question style on Study Island is similar to the style on the actual state assessments. This allows students to get comfortable with the testing style; therefore, test taking mistakes will be reduced and scores will benefit 4District generated, school distributed teacher, student and parent surveys 4Informal Mid-year School Improvement Plan review completed by principals and assistant superintendent 4Teachers set personal assessments for students each year and constantly re-evaluate the assessment data 4Meeting notes from all administration, teacher, faculty meetings are distributed to all relevant parties via for archiving and review Implementation of Data Analysis 4Assessment results incorporated into school improvement plans and lead to curriculum adjustments 4District assessment tests modified every year to incorporate prior year assessment result and changes in state standards 4School data analysis communicated to district through curriculum committee meetings held every six weeks -4-

6 Franklin Elementary School Leadership/Culture Leadership Roles 4Assistant superintendent responsible for primary curriculum decisions, distribution and monitoring of district assessments, review of ISAT results 4Schools are teacher driven. Principal assumes role as a peer facilitator of school decisions. Teacher led committee s are responsible for making key school decisions 4District based technology coordinator with support staff directs technology initiatives. School appoints a technology advisor from the teacher ranks. District Technology Plan is created annually; outlines the yearly plans, challenges and progress External Support 4Americorps volunteer from nearby junior college 4Franklin Network Community Association (FNCA) supports technology programs, school improvement programs, provides volunteers, performs grant writing 4Strong collaboration with local universities (7 schools) 4School summer camp program sponsored by community churches 4Principal participated in leadership academy provided free of charge by the University of Missouri 4Regional Office of Education provides support to schools on state standards, on-line courses, info, etc. Communication 4Summer outreach program by school to every student s home 4Weekly school wide meetings, district wide curriculum committees (6 wks), district wide subject meetings 4School web site used to communicate with parents and community 4Daily morning, recess and lunch time meetings used by teachers for impromptu collaboration 4Weekly principal meetings held to discuss school wide issues, trends, worthwhile knowledge sharing 4Curriculum reports are created by teaching groups and shared during weekly staff meetings 4Monthly teacher advisory meetings including teacher union representation Professional Development 4District principals received Gates Training 4Peer workshops given monthly and are available to all teachers 4District relies on teacher knowledge experts that supply training workshops to interested teachers 4Teachers attend training sessions out of district as well as receive training courses on school site. 4Greater teacher demand for training than budget supports -5-

7 Franklin Elementary School Miscellaneous Hard Copy Appendices 4School Improvement Plan 4Teacher assessments 4District assessments 4DC principal and teacher surveys Funding Channels 4School requested grants 4FNCA grants 4State allocated education funds 4Federal education funds (NCLB) 4Local community church donations Teachers Corner 4Strong teacher collaboration has allowed Franklin students to be performance tracked during their entire elementary career. Teachers use many informal methods to collaborate (grade book comparison, class curriculum reviews, etc.) and constantly improve the effectiveness of the teaching process 4Belleville district relies heavily on Data Driven analysis and decision making. All teachers interviewed saw this as one of the top three reasons for district s prolonged success 4 Character Plus program, sponsored by the state of Missouri, has led to an improved learning environment and is attributed to increases in student productivity while in school -6-

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