Happy New Year

As we begin 2017, the Milton Area School District is in an exciting place!

If you have not seen them, please go to our facebook page and check out the Prowling the Halls videos.  That being said, please like our Facebook page so that you can be up to speed on what is happening in the district.

Our teachers are actively working on Curriculum and improving instruction.  More information can be found here – https://web2.milton.k12.pa.us/teaching%26learning

Happy 2017!

Blogging with 4th Grade

Welcome to my fourth grade friends who are blogging!

Here are my riddles:

1. How many months have 28 days?

2. Two mothers and two daughters went out to eat lunch.  Everyone had a burger, but only three were ordered.  How is that possible?

3. How far can a dog run into the woods?

4. I have an odd number and can take away one letter and make it even.  What number is it?

 

Student Excellence

This Friday, our middle school STEM students will be sharing their greenhouse project.  This is not only a fantastic opportunity for our students, but a great way to show the state what is happening in Milton.  Please see the websites below to learn more about the recognition for Milton!

The text from the announcement says “The Milton Area School District partnered with local businesses and the district’s foundation to create an authentic project for eighth-graders. We asked them to determine ways to better manage the district’s greenhouse and create a hydroponics system. They researched, collaborated and solved the problem with great resolve.”

Home

https://www.paschoolleaders.org/extras/education-excellence-fair/

BrightBytes Data

At the end of the 2015-2016 School Year, our students and teachers took another BrightBytes Survey.  There is a great deal of information that is gained from the responses to that survey.  The administrative team looks at that information to discuss Professional Development needs, gain insight as we plan for technology, among many other things.  The data report that we get is in an interactive site and allows us to sort and compare data.  The report that I am attaching to this blog post is a high level look at our BrightBytes Data at the district level and shows some of the interesting pieces of data that we got back.  Happy Reading!

 

2016 BrightBytes Data Report

More KtO Learning

I shared a little bit about the session that I attended at the KtO conference that was facilitated by the group By The Numbers.  They handle all KtO data statewide.  Not only do they provide data packets for districts but they also prepare a statewide report.  I have attached the statewide KtO Data packet and the presentation slides from the session.  Enjoy!

 

KtO Annual Report Executive Summary

KtO State Results

KtO Conference 2016

Mr. Rantz, Mrs. Spear and I had an amazing three days of learning with educators from all over the state.  I wanted to share some of the learning that I took away from the conference with a blog post.

Day 1:

We started the day with Jonathan Mooney who struggled as a student with Dyslexia, Disgraphia and ADHD.  He talked about how we, as educators, can help students with issues see the worth in the things that they are good at.  He stressed the importance of a student’s self-concept in believing that they can do it!  Some of the things that I took away were:
1. Chinese finger trap analogy – don’t stress them out about what they cannot do.
2. Be aware of how you handle kids who struggle.
3. You can’t always fix the disability, but you can find ways to support them through it.

I attended a breakout session entitled “Utilizing Literature Circles in the Secondary Classroom.”   While I have done lit circles as a teacher, it was great to hear how someone else handles them and to have those resources to share with our teachers.  I also attended a session where the state contractor By the Numbers, who prepares our district data packet, presented the statewide KtO Data.  It is always interesting to hear how Milton’s data compares to what is being reported around the state.  Some of the things that we heard were:
1. 95,000 students took GRADE in one year!
2. At the HS level, KtO serves students who categorized as follows – 50% are Economically Disadvantaged, 16% have IEPs, 2% are ELL and 22% are served by Title programs.
3. KtO serves a higher percentage of those subgroups (except ELL) than the state average.
4. KtO funded districts have closed the achievement gap in literacy when compared to non-funded districts.
5. If you compare school year 2013-2014 to school year 2014-2015, non-funded districts  in PA lost ground in achievement and the PA KtO funded district gained ground.
6. In 2014-2015, Principals in funded schools reported teachers were using better literacy strategies in classrooms.

Day 2:

We started the day hearing from Dr. Tim Shanahan and learning “How to and How Not to Raise Test Scores.  He gained fame by increasing reading achievement in a large, urban school district and shared with us some of the things that he did and we could model to impact change.  Most notably, he left us with this:

How do you get higher reading scores?  TEACH READING!

I attended a breakout session entitled, “Extreme Makeover: Disciplinary Literacy.”  The Literacy Coach and IU Coach Mentor who presented shared their experience and helping teachers create disciplinary literacy.  Each content area has a bar that is set that determines what someone must be able to do or be “literate” in the discipline.
In addition, each KtO funded district had an area on this day to display the work that they are doing in their district and the rest of us were able to talk to them and learn from them how cutting edge literacy practices are changing schools around the state.

Day 3:

I attended a Statewide Project Director’s meeting to hear details about finalizing year 4 budget, year 5 allocations, navigating the needs of the eGrant System and plans for future KtO funding as the grant comes to an end.

We ended the conference with Dr. Steve Constantino who is an author, school superintendent and considered an authority on family engagement.  Each conference participant received a copy of his book about family engagement.  He shared stories with us about his 36-year career as an educator and what that has helped him learn about engaging families.