MES ready to break 100 in elementary ranking
At the board of education LSIC (Local School Improvement Council) meeting at Marlinton Elementary School Monday night, Principal Ron Hall stated he had a clear goal for his students ﾖ to break 100 on the elementary ranking for the state.
Elementary schools are ranked by Westest scores and although MES has improved over the years, it has yet to be in the top 100.
ﾓI truly do not understand why 90 percent of my students arenﾒt mastery or above because mastery is just a C and I know that 90 percent of my students are at least C students,ﾔ he said. ﾓWeﾒre working on it; my teachers are fabulous. Weﾒre taking what everybody is giving us and using it to enhance our school.ﾔ
MES is utilizing math and reading academic interventionists in the classrooms and strengthening writing skills by writing in every subject.
ﾓI invite you to walk our hallways and look at the writing we have on the walls,ﾔ Hall said. ﾓWeﾒre writing, weﾒre writing and when weﾒre done writing, we write. The students are honoring our veterans Wednesday, and they all wrote about the veterans.ﾔ
To better understand the structure of a highly ranked school, Hall contacted several schools in the state to request a visit. He chose Rupert Elementary School because it closely resembles MES in number of students and socio-economic status. Rupert is currently ranked 12th in the state and Hall said he hopes to take teachers with him to visit the school and see how the curriculum differs.
LSIC president Sara Riley said the organization is working on strategies to help students improve their level of learning and to encourage more parental involvement.
ﾓThe strategy to improve the test scores further is to build higher level thinking skills, build comprehension and build the degree of thinking,ﾔ she said. ﾓOne very important group of people that we havenﾒt figured out a good way to communicate with are the parents. We want to talk to kids and parents about using homework as a way to increase the level of participation in their childrenﾒs education.ﾔ
Riley added that because other areas that make the school a welcoming environment are handled so well, teachers and Hall are able to focus on academia.
ﾓDiscipline issues are really down and so we are able to shift our focus on curriculum because the kids and teachers are on board with the Respect and Protect program,ﾔ she said. ﾓThe school is very inviting. I feel welcome when I visit. The teachers, even those who are not my childrenﾒs teachers, make eye contact, smile and are very positive.ﾔ
Because discipline issues are low, Hall is afforded more time to visit classrooms ﾖﾖ time that he takes full advantage of every day.
ﾓIﾒm in every class at least twice a week,ﾔ he said. ﾓIﾒm always visiting the classes and in the halls with the students. My teachers are dedicated to their jobs and giving 100 percent everyday, and I love to see that.ﾔ
MES recently began an after-school tutoring program to assist students in problem areas, in the classroom and on the Westest. Hall said teachers Jamey Weber and Jessica Dean found weak areas on the Westest and are tutoring students in those areas.
Students are also receiving help from other students. Marlinton Middle School students visit the school and read to the kids.
ﾓItﾒs a wonderful thing,ﾔ Hall said. ﾓItﾒs a well-rounded bunch of kids [from MMS] and our kids love it. Itﾒs peer teaching which I think itﾒs great for them.ﾔ
The board thanked Hall, Riley and other LSIC members in attendance for their input and their dedication to the students.
In personnel management, the board approved the following:
ﾕ Requested transfer of Lawrence T. Workman from assistant boys basketball coach at Marlinton Middle School to head boys basketball coach at Marlinton Middle School, effective for the 2011-2012 season at a supplement of $1,500.
ﾕ Employment of Shannon G. Arbogast as head girls basketball coach at Marlinton Middle School, effective for the 2011-2012 season at a supplement of $1,500.
The next board of education meeting will be November 14 at 7 p.m. in the board of education conference room.