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Moscow Charter School

MCS Current News

More information about Spanish and the SBAC

6/6/2014 - From Mr. Bonuccelli

More information about Spanish and the SBAC

This year Idaho transitioned from the ISAT to the SBAC (Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium test) as their standardized test.  This was a trial year for our state to prepare for when it becomes official for 2014-15 school year.  The state of Idaho rates our school based on student performance on this test (also known as the STAR rating) and our continued funding and operations depend on high scores.  Students do not start taking the test until 3rd grade, but we have found that preparation for it must start much sooner.  As an example, our 3rd graders were expected to type a five paragraph essay for one of the questions.  This definitely gave kids test anxiety, or they gave up right away.  This was frustrating for staff and students alike, and it was obvious that skills needed to be developed at a much younger age.
 
This year 1st - 7th grades were getting about 30 minutes of Spanish a week.  We were not certain that this was enough time for real Spanish retention.  We decided that this time would be more usefully devoted to technology, since kids are exposed to it much more throughout the week (at home and at school).  Next year all students K-8 will be receiving technology for at least 40 minutes throughout the week, which will include keyboarding time.  We hope this will help increase both our studentsí comfort level with the testing technology and their overall performance.  I have never been a big fan of working towards a test, but when our state funding depends directly on our test scores, I want to make sure our students are well prepared.  This funding is crucial to making sure that we can keep our doors open since we are a Charter School and cannot receive funding through local run bonds or levies. 
 
This is a trial year for the suspension of Spanish and the school could decide to incorporate it back into the curriculum for the 2015-216 school year.  We will also have the opportunity to offer an after school Spanish program for our students to attend in 2014-15, that will utilize the early release time on Friday afternoons. We welcome any and all input from families regarding this decision.


I am attaching a link to the SBAC website, in case you would like to view any other information on it:  www.smarterbalanced.org
 
Please feel free to email or call me if you have any other questions.
 
208-883-3195

Moscow Charter School ∑ 1723 East F. Street ∑ Moscow, ID 83843 ∑ (208) 883-3195 ∑ fax (208) 892-3855 ∑ Attendance (208) 596-ILLS