News Worth Celebrating!
I’m excited to share with you that 100% of Cornerstone 3rd and 4th graders from last year’s class met, exceeded, or scored proficient on all state assessments! That’s right, last spring all five students passed the 2012 reading and math and all three 4th graders passed the science assessment with flying colors. (3rd graders are not tested in science.)
I am so proud of these hard working students and also proud of the rigorous curriculum and teaching philosophy adopted in Cornerstone and at Pleasantview Academy. Yes, it is possible to both teach the WHOLE child and to score well on assessments. I’m especially proud that we did well without focusing all year on practice worksheets or “drills” to insure we pass.
Although we take a few practice tests the week before so that children feel comfortable about the testing procedures, we rely on solid teaching, innovative instruction, high expectations, partnering with parents, small classrooms, and getting to know students’s strengths and weaknesses to help them achieve their best personal growth. We don’t take the easy way in Cornerstone; we always try to do our best for our students, regardless of the time or effort involved.
I was pretty confident going in that these students were going to rock the assessments, but it was still nice to have the tests confirm my beliefs. The tests are just one indicator of success. And although I am proud of their scores, I am even prouder of the character of each of these kiddos. Having the privilege of witnessing and participating in both the intellectual and emotional learning of students as they grow as human beings is my greatest pleasure as a teacher. I feel thankful and blessed each day to have the opportunity!
Passing state tests is nothing new in Cornerstone. Annually we do very well. Unfortunately, the way testing scores are broken down and reported by the state include all 3rd-8th grade students from PA in the “elementary” category; both on-site AND virtual students. So it can be confusing to parents about how Cornerstone students (a very small section of that group) are doing on state tests. Please continue to contact me with any questions about curriculum or test scores. And please spread the word: Cornerstone students rock!