Robbinsville School District Math Review Committee

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					Robbinsville School District
 Math Review Committee
       December 2008
                           Background
• Committee formed based on parental concerns related
  to K-5 Math Program
• Committee approved March 10, 2008
  – “…form a committee representing stakeholders of the
    educational community to review the K-8 math program and
    present its findings at a public board meeting….”
• Committee membership approved April 29, 2008
    Parents                 Teachers                      Board/Administrators
    Nancy Brunner           Kathy Diefes (Gr 1) Lainie Potter
    Jeff Gavlick            Shelly King (Gr 3)            Carol Boyne
    Biagio Manieri Karen Bukowski (Gr 7)        B.C. Preston
    Karen Perna             Sharon Moffat (Gr 8)
    Doreen Rosica Laura Goodrow (RHS)
                  Committee Approach
•   Committee met seven times between June &
    December
•   Group Norms:
    –   This process will be a collective effort
    –   Discussions will stay in the room - members agreed that
        there will be no blogging about meetings – no mass e-
        mailing
    –   Information will be disseminated through the Board of
        Education at monthly meetings
    –   Approach topic with an open mind
    –   Respect differences of opinion
    –   Leave titles / positions at the door – Everyone is equal
               Committee Approach

• Scope: elementary (K-5)
• Reviewed, examined & brainstormed:
  – 5-year curriculum process
  – History of elementary math program in Robbinsville
  – Continuum of math programs (traditional
    constructivist)
  – Program success factors
  – Current program strengths & shortcomings
  – Community perception
  – Expert input (college math professors)
  Math Review
   Committee
Recommendations
              Basic Math Skills
•   The school will teach standard algorithms
•   Require student mastery of basic skills and
    standard algorithms to ensure algebra readiness by
    7th grade
•   Maintain operational instruction of calculator use
    (Familiarity for standardized tests) - calculators
    should not be used for problem solving and general
    calculations
•   Require regular timed tests for mastery of basic
    facts
                     Teaching
• Increase consistency of instruction within and across
  grade levels
• Invest in the development of quality supplemental
  materials and provide specific           instruction on
  when/where/how to use such materials
• Differentiate classroom instruction to better
  challenge students at all learning levels
• Evaluate the feasibility of introducing staff or
  contract-based content coaches and/or isolating
  content teachers in the primary grades
                  Homework
•   Evaluate homework to ensure that all assignments
    have a clear objective and reinforce student
    learning
•   Homework connections to learning must be clearly
    communicated to parents
•   Include relevant word problems as often as may be
    applicable
•   Homework assignments should be differentiated to
    challenge students at all levels
      Communication & Parents
• Effectively communicate program goals and
  objectives to parents
• Articulate that curriculum is not dictated by
  the NJASK test
• Include a text as reference material for home
  use / homework
    Measurements / Benchmarks
•   Establish a clear set of grade-appropriate
    benchmark standards which meet or exceed
    NJCCCS
•   Require technical fluency and conceptual
    understanding through specific curricular
    components
•   Implement end of year common math skills
    assessments for each grade, which are supported
    with formative, periodic assessments
•   Track student success at every proficiency level on
    standardized assessments
              Long-Term Initiatives
•    Establish a timeline for consistent implementation of
     improvements to existing program - June 2009
•    Investigate other programs that could be implemented in
     place of Everyday Math
•    Maintain an open mind while performing ongoing
     investigation of other programs
To achieve the above:
    – Review the National Mathematics Advisory Panel Report
        (2008)
    – Research math programs of countries in top tier TIMMS
        report
    – Investigate math programs of states scoring the highest
        grade in the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation survey
•    A possible timeline for completing this would be 12 – 18
     months
•    Educational Development and Policy Committee will provide
     oversight and accountability for all recommendations
     contained herein
• Coming Soon!
  – Power Point will be posted, with narration, on the
    district homepage