Carbon School District Press Release
While the pause in school last spring sent shockwaves over education across the country, the recovery from that is ongoing for many schools and is very satisfying to see. Sally Mauro Elementary is one of those schools and as data comes in about reading growth and math facts, it shows that good things are happening.
“Our reading goal is a district goal; it’s not something we do just for ourselves,” said Blake Allen, the Principal at Sally Mauro. “It is incorporated into our classrooms. The present goal for this May is to have 52.4 percent of students at their grade level.”
Data shows that, presently, the fourth grade is at 40 percent and the fifth grade is at 51 percent, which is almost where the students are expected to be at the end of the year. In kindergarten and first grade, phonics are the order of the day in the program. Phonics are the base building blocks for reading.
“Our phonics growth, particularly in first grade, is looking great,” said Kristina Anderson, the school’s instructional coach.
Anderson added that “teachers and paraprofessionals have really jumped on board to help students with reading levels” and that everyone in the school is helping with the program. On the subject of math data, the school is also excelling for the year.
“We are seeing great growth this year in math and we expect that at the end of this school year, we will see a level of 80 percent,” said Allen.
Second grade in particular is ahead of schedule in this crusade. In early December they were already at 71 percent. Fifth grade is at 68 percent.
“When I saw that percentage for second grade, I asked teachers how they got that result,” said Anderson. “One of them told me that she wanted the students to understand the goals that had been set. They gave the students all kinds of ways to practice, they have sent out homework with addition and subtraction problems, and they have celebrated when they have achieved their successes.”
Teachers are being positive that students have their basics down before they move into a particular grade level’s math operations.
“For instance, the fourth and fifth grade didn’t begin the year just assuming that students coming in knew their addition and subtraction facts,” stated Anderson. “Teachers began the year making sure the students had those skills before they moved on to multiplication and division.”
There has been a gain of over a 26 percent across grade levels from the beginning of the year until mid-December. The biggest growth came in the second grade where students went from an 11 percent proficiency rate to 71 percent in just a few months.
“I think that the end goal is important, but you also have to look at where we came from this year, where we started,” said Allen. “But, what I have learned is that once January comes, something clicks and the growth increases even faster, so what happens after the holiday break will be exciting.”