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Tuesday, 16 January 2007 12:57

ACUSD Approves Education Plan For Future

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slide15The Amador County Unified School District Board of Trustees recently approved their annual Local Education Agency plan. This plan is required by the federal government for all districts accepting funding through the No Child Left Behind Act.  The LEA Plan report must include progress made by the district that is related to the five performance goals and 12 performance indicators as outlined by the district in the LEA Plan including guidance as well as other related programmatic requirements. According to Elizabeth Chapin Pinotti, Asst Supt of Curriculum for ASCUD The LEA Plan serves six main  purposes: It is a Five-year operational plan (July 1, 2003 to June 30, 2008) to be updated annually. The plan is a Guide for federal and state-funded programs, allocations of resources, and reporting requirements.

slide16 It is a Single, comprehensive plan describing services for all students. The plan develops a Blueprint for students to achieve the California state content standards and provides a basis for continual parent and community involvement, planning, implementation, monitoring, and assessment. Finally, the plan is a summary of all existing federal and state plans that can establish a focus for raising academic performance for all students here in the district.

The State also provides goals for this plan. The state goals include that all students reach STAR test results proficient or above in reading and mathematics, by the 2013-2014 school year. All English language learners will learn English, all learning environments will be drug free and safe, and that all students will graduate from high school. Chapin-Pinotti states that basically the plan outlines goals and how to achieve those goals. 

slide19 Trustee PJ Karnaze expressed his pleasure with the plan stating that the plan has a heavy emphasis on English Language Arts. Included in the plan are strategies for increasing performance at the fifth grade level. The report show that grades 2-4 have good levels of proficiency but that fifth grade test scores show room for improvement. The fifth graders of the 05-06 school year showed a drop of 10 percent in reading comprehension scores, as well as vocabulary development and analysis, where the group dropped 14 percent. This drop followed a 3 year run of increased scores and overall improvement. In response the district will continue the Step-Up to writing program, as well as teacher training for the program.

This Step-Up to Writing program is key to the districts goals at many elementary grade levels. There was substantial progress made in the 9th grade, while the 7th grade progress seemed stagnant according to the report. Ninth grade scores are on target to meet the federal goals of 100 percent of kids proficient in English Language arts by 2014. Math goals, which are designated by the state as being 24 percent of students in the proficient category, are looking somewhat more difficult to meet. The report states that local students struggle when higher order concepts are introduced and proficiency requires advanced algebraic reasoning. The report notes that of 413 11th graders in 05-06, only 296 took math. These students, according to the report, are represented by students who do not have the appropriate foundation to take Algebra before their junior year.

slide20 The ACUSD plan to make the state and federal goals involves a heavy emphasis on teachers, citing that the district will continue to be provided additional professional development by the district as well as remaining highly qualified. Also, the provision of comprehensive writing programs through out the district will continue at all grade levels. The No Child Left Behind program requires district’s meet goals by 2014 in order to remain eligible for funding

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