Moving Fourth-Graders Will Help Test Scores, Officials Say
Green Brook Board of Education moves to bolster steps already expected to restore scores.
Alarmed by a drop in the result of the 2011-12 NJASK scores among Green Brook students, the school district is looking to reorganize the grades between the district's two schools.
The board of education approved first reading of a policy Monday that would move fourth-grade classes to Irene E. Feldkirchner School beginning with the 2013-14 school year to not only balance the enrollments between the schools, but also bring the younger classes together at one school.
The policy will face a second vote, following public comments, at the next board meeting, and constitutes the third leg of the district's plan to address the NJASK scores.
Superintendent Richard Labbe, speaking in an interview Wednesday, said the district's recent change in grouping students and new monitoring and curriculum changes should also help.
Dr. Labbe said eliminating tracking in the language arts classes will help expose some of the students to more challenging work.
"That's one of the problems with grouping students," he said.
The other step is a monitoring system implemented called "response methodology," which will help teachers and administrators identify and focus on students falling behind.
And a new language arts program will provide the content students need to perform better, Dr. Labbe said.
"We adopted a new LA program that's more in compliance with the testing model," he said. The program was piloted last year in a third-grade class that achieved complete proficiency on the NJASK.
The steps follow a 3 percent total drop in students achieving proficient and advanced proficient scores on the NJASK test from the 2010-2011 school year, and the 2011-2012 school year. The largest declines reported were 16 percent drops in language arts scores for the third and fourth grades.