New math assessment tool helps SCSD improve K-2 instruction

— “It was a no-brainer,” said Interim Superintendent Judy Pastel.

Pastel, who started in the district at the end of summer, said that after talking with parents, teachers and administrators when she first arrived, she thought the district needed to do instruction to “increase student achievement across the board.” She talked to the school principals about it and Gerst mentioned AIMSweb and then did a demonstration.

“All we could see were positive things for students and teachers,” Pastel said. Since it’s been in use, the program has proven to offer sound data that allows teachers to focus on and address certain skills with students without slowing down the students or the entire class in other ways, she said.

“We must give teachers the tools they need to be successful [and] the teachers have really embraced it, and are using it the way it’s supposed to be used to monitor and improve instruction,” Pastel said. “It’s been really good for the children.”

The Skaneateles district also has done math assessments in grades 2 through 6 in computation and math concepts and application, and is learning how to use those assessments to help instruction in the future for those grades as well.

For more information on AIMSweb, visit aimsweb.com.

Jason Emerson is editor of the Skaneateles Press. He can be reached at editor@skaneatelespress.com.

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