All third-grade teachers to get literacy training

All third-grade teachers to get literacy training
January 18
14:07 2018

The local board of education got back to work last week as they held the first meeting of the new year. 

The first item up for discussion during the meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 9, was a contract with Education Resource Group LLC (ERG), to provide literacy training on “Teacher Directed Reading” and “Guided Reading” to all third- grade teachers in the district.

One of the items on the board’s “to do list” is to get third-grade reading scores to 90 percent by 2020. Rusty Hall, district instructional superintendent, said the training will be geared toward reaching that goal.

Currently only 55 percent of all third-graders read at grade level. 

“Feeling a sense of urgency, we wanted to see what we could do differently to ensure that we reach these goals. We want to get to that trajectory to where we’re going to get to that 90 percent by 2020,” Hall said.

After meeting with local principals and instructional facilitators last November, Hall said his colleagues met and reviewed the data and came up with the plan to implement the training. According to Hall, from January to March, all third-grade teachers in the district will be provided training. After three days of training, ERG will come back to  help administrators determine where each school stands and determine areas that may need work.

“That’s going to help us determine next steps. It’s also going to help us determine where we go from there and what success we saw,” he said

Before voting on the contract, members of the board had the opportunity to ask questions. Lori Goins Clark raised a few questions, including why ERG was selected for the training. She also questioned the number of programs the district already has that are similar to the training ERA will provide. Marilyn Parker and board chair Dana Caudill Jones raised questions as well.

Before wrapping up his presentation, Hall said, “I think this is going to help us and help our teachers keep that laser – like focus on standards, on those common core standards that are required to be successful.

“We’re not getting lost in a program or in a script. We’re focused on those standards.”

When it was time to vote on the contract, it passed unanimously. Assistant board Chairman Robert Barr did not attend the board meeting.

The board also voted unanimously to continue training for faculty and staff at Kennedy High School with DRIVE Educational Consulting Group. According to the contract, DRIVE will provide 10 days of consultative support and coaching for the entire staff at Kennedy with an emphasis on behavior management, building relationships and school climate.

“Our contract with Drive Educational Consulting Group is really meant to invest in our people, not just our students but our staff,” said Keisha Gabriel, principal at Kennedy High School. 

For the past three years, Kennedy has exceeded expected growth. Gabriel said the training from DRIVE has played a major role in that

“I’m telling this everywhere I go: For the past three years, we’ve exceeded growth. So, that’s something that we’re really proud of,” she said.

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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