Character word for the month of
(caring, giving, sharing, helpfulness, compassion, generosity, unselfishness)
Classes Starts at 8:00 - 3:20
August 26, 2014
On behalf of all the staff at Lane School, I would like to welcome back all of our students and parents as well as new parents and students to the district. I would like to take this opportunity to clarify our school day and explain how parents can join us in our mission to provide the best education possible for our children.
Let me begin by saying that students and teachers in public school education today are under the microscope now more than ever before. Today's educational expectations and accountability handed down to us from our legislators and State Superintendent are non-negotiable and barely resemble the educational experiences you and I shared while attending school years ago. Poor student performance has direct consequences to the teacher and the school district as a whole. The Following are examples:
A thru F- Every school district in Oklahoma receives an evaluation score of A thru F primarily based upon student achievement test performance along with various other indicators. These scored are calculated with no regard to poverty rate, special ed population, disparity in funding, etc. When school districts perform poorly as a result of poor student performance on achievement tests, it sets in motion a variety of consequences, labels, interventions, and penalties from the state department of education to the school district. While most folks understand what an A-F is, they have very little understanding of how that A thru F was derived. Currently it is a 38 page document.
For the last two years, the Lane School District has earned a "B" score which is above average. We as a staff have worked very hard to be accountable, innovative, and responsible to the task we have signed on to perform. Given that effort, it is impossible for the teacher or the school district to affect student performance when a student misses 10, 20, 30, and 40 days of school out of a 165 day school year.
WE are obligated by law and board policy to follow up with parents on a regular basis and to enforce reporting, penalties, and accountability regarding student attendance.
Furthermore, under the (TLE) Teacher Leader Effectiveness evaluation model that was enacted two years ago by our legislature and implemented by the SDE (state dept of education), all teacher evaluations will be weighted upon success or failure of each individual student on the achievement test. In other words, the teacher evaluation score hinges on student performance and has potential consequences for the teacher into the future.
3rd Grade Retention Law- While this law has been written, re-written and modified, a child can still be retained if certain educational skills, competencies, and mastery are not met. Given this environment, now more than ever we must look critically and carefully at where each kindergartener, 1st grader, and 2nd grader is performing before promoting them to the next grade to avoid a cliff in the 3rd grade. Therefore, as a team of parents, administrators, and teachers we must collectively make decisions of high accountability and responsibility in regards to student retention.
Most have noticed by now that every Friday at 2:00 the students are dismissed and buses run. From 2:00 to 3:30 this time is dedicated to extensive review of each student's performance, progress, regression, and any possible interventions, strategies, or communications that need to occur that may benefit the student.
This is a coordinated effort with the entire instructional staff at one time each week. During this time the teaching staff is broken down into 3 separate pods: Early Childhood, Intermediate, and Upper grades. These meetings are directed and led by Instructional leaders who have the authority to steer adjustments, implement changes, and be held accountable for them. The Lane School District as a team evaluated Blue Ribbon School districts, successful school district models and are trying to emulate proven models that have worked successfully for other school districts. The desired result is to address student needs in "real time" as opposed to once every 9 weeks or semester. The sooner we identify a breakdown in student performance, the sooner we can affect it. This monitoring is executed with the use of technology, tracking software, and teacher-administrator collaboration.
On behalf of our instructional team and myself, we want to extend a "thank you" to all the parents who give their full support, cooperation, and understanding in our efforts to give every child the best possible educational result. We appreciate all the parents who make time to communicate with the staff in a positive way on a regular basis to ensure their child's success. We encourage all parents and stake holders to take this endeavor seriously and be a part of the solution including regular attendance, not disturbing the end of the day instructional closure for the teacher, supporting good discipline in the school, and supporting your child's teacher in every way possible.
Roland Smith- Superintendent
Debra Patton- Principal
Sharon Holcomb- Student Assessment