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“Data-lyzing”

September 22, 2014

Board and school EQAO results for grades 3 and 6 were recently released and we anticipate the public release of grade 9 results shortly. The careful work of “datalyzing” is underway; analyzing and deconstructing the data in order to determine where collectively as a school board we need to focus our attention and energy in order to maximize student learning. As one Principal colleague noted in reference to our students, “We need not only to call them by name, we need to know them by name!”  Our educators have been actively engaged these first few weeks in getting to know each one of their students, their strengths and interests and their areas for growth in order to most effectively engage them in their learning. Our job is to help each student become the person that God intends for her/him to be!

Getting to know data as part of a process of investigating issues and deciding what to do next is part of ongoing improvement. This process will help us as educators to use evidence to bring increased clarity and coherence to the work we engage in every day: teaching and learning.

We are celebrating the trends over time in Reading and Writing in grade 3. Over the past five years our students have increased by 8% in both areas. Similar 5 year gains are evident in grade 6 with an increase of 7% in Reading and 8% in Writing. We also recognize that both provincially and locally we must focus attention on instruction in Mathematics. While we remain slightly ahead of the provincial average in grade 3 and 6, we have also seen a decline locally over time. We need to reclaim those gains!

School Improvement Plans are in development and refinement. EQAO is one source of data to inform the plan. A variety of data sources are used to determine next steps and to monitor progress toward the school improvement plan goals. They provide a focus for the work that schools will undertake this year. Embracing a growth mindset will enable us to employ the necessary curiousity and grit to persevere and make a positive impact in the classroom. Our Board Improvement Plan will receive final approval in early October. Our goal is to ensure success for a all students by developing their knowledge, skills, competencies and God-given gifts.

Tamara

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