Mount Markham Central School District will begin tracking every student’s progress in reading from kindergarten through graduation.
Superintendent Joe D’Apice and High School Principal Victor Zampetti outlined to the MM Board of Education last week the methods that will capture student progress and help develop reading skills. This is one of the academic goals in place this year.
Zampetti said now that the pandemic has lessened, the High School will be doing more celebrating of success. To help all students with academic achievements, the building has more academic support rooms which provide a structured study hall and academic help to students.
At least one teacher assistant remains after school Mondays through Thursdays to help students with homework. Zampetti said data from the last 10 years of Advanced Placement courses will be studied to determine ways to improve in that area.
Ninth graders entering the High School will participate in a couple of programs to help with mental health and social skills such as getting along.
New this year will be implementing Star testing at the High School. Students in the Elementary and Middle schools already take the test that determines at what level a student is reading.
Zampetti said the first test will be this month and two others will be done this school year to measure progress. This will give the District baseline data to figure out who needs improvement, especially for those students shown to be reading three grades or more below their in-class level.
“Do I think kids need improvement,’’ Zampetti said. “Yes. Do I have solid core data that tells us that? No.’’
All teachers will help students build their vocabulary. Knowing reading levels of a class, Zampetti said, will also help teachers choose appropriate material for their classroom teaching.
D’Apice said the Star testing, done on Chromebooks and customized for each student as they answer questions, will begin the conversations about improving reading skills for all students.
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