At the last school board meeting held on Monday, July 17, the board heard the assessment update from Tami Johnson.
Johnson provided the board with the latest news from the state regarding the assessment of students.
Whereas students have typically been tested from grades 3 through 8 and then again their junior years of high school, House Bill 4165 stipulates that students will now be tested as early as kindergarten.
In the first six weeks of school, kindergarten students will have an assessment proctored by their instructors. Teachers will be given booklets on math and English language learning, and will also be ask to plot the students’ social development. The assessment program is one of readiness, where tests are administered with the intent to discover how ready for the school system kindergarten-aged students are upon entry.
A pilot program launched last school year and the program will now go into effect at the Lake County School District No. 7 level for the upcoming 2013-2014 school year.
The recommendations made this year are tied to the success of last year’s pilot assessment program.
“This is partially because of the one big continuum of education,” said LCSD No. 7 Supt. Sean Gallagher. “One step is for the state to look at the data and see how ready our kinders are throughout the state.”
The continuum is consistent with the 40/40/20 goals implemented at the state level that would like to see 40 percent of the population earn a bachelors degree, 40 percent of the population earn an associates degree, and 20 percent of the population at least a graduating diploma.
The test scores now being studied chart the scores of students from an early age all the way into post-secondary education. Starting students at the kindergarten level is consistent with that method, giving earlier data for administrators and legislators to study.
Will Cahill, principal of the elementary schools, and Fremont and Union School kindergarten teachers Sandi Lysney and Claudia Moore attended a conference in late July where they learned how to proctor the assessments for their incoming students as well as what to look for with the development young children.
Johnson will have her assessment training Thursday, Aug. 15.