continued Garraffo said the whole system was designed by educators within the district.
“This was a teacher-led initiative and that a committee of more than 60 teachers has been working on the new report card for over two years,” he said. “This is a very positive change.”
The North Syracuse Central School District also welcomes a number of changes for the 2012-13 school year. At the elementary level, the NSCSD will be incorporating changes similar to those in Liverpool in order to assimilate to NYSED’s Common Core Learning Standards. On their report cards, students will receive a rubric grade between 1 and 4 for the first time this year on their report card.
With the continued emphasis by the state on assessment tests, North Syracuse’s schools and teachers will be asking more of their students in terms of the “rigor and relevance of their learning.”
“This means that we will be asking students to do more critical thinking, problem solving and higher order analysis of what they read,” said Laurie Cook, public information officer for the district. “This will be a shift in practice and may be difficult at first but these skills will prepare each student to be college and career ready after graduation. We ask that you continue to engage your child in conversation about stories that they have read which helps reinforce their comprehension skills.”
On the plus side, the state’s math and English Language Arts (ELA) assessments don’t conflict with spring break this year; last year’s late scheduling shift caused quite the burden for many families. This year’s third- through eighth-grade assessments will take place April 16 to 18 (ELA) and April 24 to 26 (math).
In the meantime, technology upgrades abound district-wide. Smartboards have been installed in all classrooms at Gillette Road Middle School and North Syracuse Junior High School, as well as all sixth-grade classrooms at Roxboro Road Middle School. Roxboro will also welcome full-time teachers from China.