Archive for Thursday, February 2, 2006

Basehor-Linwood students prepare for state assessments

February 2, 2006

Having notched excellence marks in 13 of 18 areas on the Kansas education assessments a year ago, Basehor-Linwood officials say the bar for this year's tests has been raised.

Though hesitant to predict this year's scores, assistant superintendent Bill Hatfield said the school district expects nothing less than marked improvement.

"Our expectation has always been that we continue to improve and have more and more kids reach proficiency on the tests," Hatfield said. "That's a good indicator that kids are learning the essential standards they need to be."

For the next few months, students and teachers will take part in the tests, the benchmark used to determine a school district's compliance with the federal mandate, the No Child Left Behind Act.

The first round of practice tests -- called formative tests -- began in Basehor-Linwood last week and continued this week. Prep work for the assessments will continue with another round of practice tests in February and a final walk-through in March.

The formal tests will be taken in March and April. Different schools will be on different testing schedules, Hatfield said.

In a statement on the school district's Web site, Hatfield reinforced the importance of the practice tests on the district's performance.

"Preparing for the state assessments is no small task and a team approach is crucial for the results that everyone hopes for," he writes.

The state department of education implemented the use of practice tests last year. Hatfield said they have proven to be an invaluable asset for both students and teachers.

"After teachers give each formative test, they have the opportunity to adjust their instruction to better meet each student's needs," he said.

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