Educational Leadership Program Evaluation
For the past several years, our school improvement goals have targeted the area of reading and our need to continue to improve SOL pass rates. Here are the goals for the school year 2016-2017
Goal 1: To increase the SOL Pass Rate of Students with Disabilities and Economically Disadvantaged Students by at least 10% so that SOL Pass Rates for Students with Disabilities will increase to 45 % or greater on the 2017 Reading SOL Test.
Goal 2: To increase SOL Pass Rate of overall students to 83% on the 2017 Reading SOL Test.
To help us reach our goal we continued or added several programs and/or interventions. I think the program that made the most impact was our LLI tutorial groups. We used SOL grant money to hire two part-time tutors. One of the tutors was our recently retired reading specialist and the other was a teacher no longer wanted to work full-time. These tutors worked Monday through Thursday for a half day from October through the end of May. They used Fountas and Pinnell’s Leveled Literacy Intervention Program (LLI). Teachers, administrators, and the reading specialist helped place the students into groups based on data that was reviewed on a quarterly basis at our data meetings. Groups were fluid and students moved in and out as needed. We targeted our “below the bubble” kids. These are typically students who we aren’t sure if they will pass the SOL but have the most potential do so with a little extra help. We kept the group sizes very small to ensure that they were getting the largest benefit. We also took into account personality and behaviors so that the groups would be the most productive they could be. The students who were given this intervention were also given a double dose of small group, guided reading instruction when they returned to class.
The program was extremely successful and 90% of the students who benefited from the LLI program were able to pass their reading SOL test. The students loved the stories that they read because they were short and highly engaging. The program also moves them through texts at a faster rate than we do in the classroom so they have the opportunity to be exposed to more. It also alternates between a book on their level and a book one level below to help build their confidence and fluency. We have done LLI for two years now but I think we had much more impact this year because we extended the time from 6 months to 8 months. We were also very purposeful in our selection process and constantly reviewed our data to see if kids were ready to graduate and make room for others so we could service as many students as possible. Many of the students serviced in the LLI program were economically disadvantaged students. Special Education teachers also used the program with their students who had pull-out reading. Most of our SPED students this year had pull-out reading with LLI and then a double dose in the classroom with the teacher. This allowed us to specifically target both of the sub-groups in our goal #1. We did not see as much of an increase in pass rates in our SPED population. This is probably due to the fact they are much further behind than our “below the bubble” kids.