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PSSA improvement plan presented to JT board

Published August 30. 2011 05:01PM

The Jim Thorpe Area School Improvement Plan was presented at Monday evening's school board meeting. The School Improvement Plan is designed to improve student PSSA scores.

Superintendent Barbara Conway presented the 2010-2011 PSSA Preliminary Results.

To make AYP (Adequate Yearly Progress) students needed to score 67 percent proficient or advanced in mathematics and 72 percent proficient or advanced in reading. To make AYP schools also need to have 95 percent exam participation, 90 percent attendance, and an 85 percent graduation rate.

In L.B. Morris, the third through eighth graders scored 76.4 percent overall in reading and 83 percent in mathematics.

In Penn-Kidder, the third through eighth graders scored 73.1 percent overall in reading and 82.2 percent in mathematics.

In Jim Thorpe High School, the 11th graders scored 64.7 percent overall in reading and 47.1 percent in mathematics.

Conway stated that they do need to improve the scores in the high school but she was pleased with the progress in the K-8 schools.

"We're working hard and we're going to work hard. We all need to work together," said Conway.

She added that teachers, administrators, and especially parents need to work together.

Jim Thorpe High School Principal, Thomas Lesisko, presented the School Improvement Plan. This plan was being implemented to a certain extent in all grade levels but it's specifically designed for the high school level.

The plan had already been in place but teachers and administrators had updated the plan.

The Improvement Plan includes:

- Summer Math and Reading Program

- Curriculum Alignment

- PSSA Coaches

- PSSA question of the day and week

- 4 Sight exams to identify strengths and weaknesses

- Reading and Math skills built into all subject areas

- PODS (Producing Outstanding Determined Students) - a time for PSSA question of the day/week, progress monitoring, and parent contact

Some other school districts have made the PSSA tests a graduation requirement. The PSSA tests are not currently a graduation requirement in Jim Thorpe but it could be a possibility.

Lesisko, Conway, and members of the board stressed the importance of improving these tests scores.

Conway also added, "We can't lose sight of the daily good things that are going on in the district."

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