First Presenter's Institution

Pentucket Lake Elementary School

Second Presenter's Institution

Pentucket Lake Elementary School

Third Presenter's Institution

NA

Fourth Presenter's Institution

NA

Fifth Presenter's Institution

NA

Location

Percival

Strand #1

Academic Achievement & School Leadership

Strand #2

Social & Emotional Skills

Relevance

Pentucket Lake School is a urban public school located in Haverhill, MA. It is a K-4 Title One funded school: 507 students, 28% special education, 12% English Language Learners. Despite our endless efforts, after nine months of instruction, 40% of our students could not read on grade level. It was time to take a razor focused look at reading instruction, reading interventions, progress monitoring, and what data were we using in the pre-referral process for Special Education. The journey was difficult and required: staff changes, schedule changes, balancing urgency with respect of effort, and creating a culture that staff started to be the agents for change. The State of Massachusetts ranks school according to their State assessment data - Level 1 to 5. Pentucket Lake was historically a Level 3 School = Underperforming. Through intense staff collaboration, in the Fall of 2014 Pentucket Lake elevated to Level 1 for closing the achievement gap! In October of 2014, the Commission of Education for Massachusetts visited Pentucket Lake and asked a simple question ......"How did you guys do it"? It is my hope that by presenting the journey of Pentucket Lake: "Bull's Eye - Hitting the Target for Every Student" at the National Youth at Risk Conference we can share ideas, strategies and inspiration .... that no child deserves to attend a school labeled: "Underperforming".

Brief Program Description

Hitting the reading target for every student requires precision, skill and practice. Learn how a dedicated Professional Learning Community of teachers, support staff, administration, and specialist created a targeted Tiered Reading System for all students. Shared mission + shared responsibility = shared success. Pentucket Lake school was recognized by the Massachusetts Commissioner of Education for their extensive turnaround work and closing the achievement gap. Participants will leave this session with the tools, videos, and training to implement this targeted instruction.

Summary

Please see attachment" Youth at Risk #4 Summary below

Evidence

A national study released last week shows that students who do not read proficiently by third grade are four times more likely to leave high school without a diploma than proficient readers. Poverty compounds the problem: Students who have lived in poverty are three times more likely to drop out or fail to graduate on time than their more affluent peers.

The study, “Double Jeopardy: How Third-Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation,” found:

  • One in six children who are not reading proficiently in third grade do not graduate from high school on time, a rate four times greater than that for proficient readers.
  • The rates are highest for the low, below-basic readers: 23 percent of these children drop out or fail to finish high school on time, compared to 9 percent of children with basic reading skills and 4 percent of proficient readers.
  • The below-basic readers account for a third of the sample but three-fifths of the students who do not graduate.
  • Overall, 22 percent of children who have lived in poverty do not graduate from high school, compared to 6 percent of those who have never been poor. This rises to 32 percent for students spending more than half of the survey time in poverty.
  • For children who were poor for at least a year and were not reading proficiently in third grade, the proportion of those who don’t finish school rose to 26 percent. The rate was highest for poor black and Hispanic students, at 31 and 33 percent respectively. Even so the majority of students who fail to graduate are white.
  • Even among poor children who were proficient readers in third grade, 11 percent still didn’t finish high school. That compares to 9 percent of subpar third graders who were never poor.
  • Among children who never lived in poverty, all but 2 percent of the best third-grade readers graduated from high school on time.

The longitudinal study was conducted by Donald J. Hernandez, a professor of sociology at Hunter College and the Graduate Center at the City University of New York, and a senior advisor to the Foundation for Child Development. It was commissioned by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The study confirms the link between third grade scores and high school graduation and, for the first time, breaks down the likelihood of graduation by different reading skill levels and poverty experiences.

“These findings suggest we need to work in three arenas: improving the schools where these children are learning to read, helping the families weighed down by poverty and encouraging better federal, state and local policy to improve the lot of both schools and families,” said Hernandez.

The report recommends aligning quality early education programs with the curriculum and standards in the primary grades; paying better attention to health and developmental needs of young children; and providing work training and other programs that will help lift families out of poverty.

- From: http://gradelevelreading.net/uncategorized/study-links-3rd-grade-reading-poverty-and-hs-graduation

Format

Individual Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Dianne Connolly brings over 25+ years of experience in the field of education. Her passion and enthusiasm for teaching and learning is highlighted by the signification growth the students and staff have made at Pentucket Lake Elementary School in Haverhill, MA were Dianne is in her 9th year as principal. She is committed to the individual progress of every student. Dianne and the staff have created a collaborative school that elevated from a Level 3/Unperforming school to a Level 1 school in Massachusetts. The work done to achieve these changes has brought Pentucket Lake national attention. Dianne's interest lies in creating change from the bottom up and supporting her teachers and staff to create protocols that bring ALL students to their highest learning potential. Mrs. Connolly presented at the 2017 Massachusetts Elementary Principals conference, the MA Department of Education Convening Session- "Turnaround Practices in Action". She also serves as a member of the RAND American School Leader Panel.

Keyword Descriptors

Progress monitoring, innovation, collaboration, intervention, Tiered reading system, change, teachers as leaders

Presentation Year

2018

Start Date

3-6-2018 10:15 AM

End Date

3-6-2018 11:30 AM

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Mar 6th, 10:15 AM Mar 6th, 11:30 AM

Bull's Eye - Hitting the Target for Every Student!

Percival

Hitting the reading target for every student requires precision, skill and practice. Learn how a dedicated Professional Learning Community of teachers, support staff, administration, and specialist created a targeted Tiered Reading System for all students. Shared mission + shared responsibility = shared success. Pentucket Lake school was recognized by the Massachusetts Commissioner of Education for their extensive turnaround work and closing the achievement gap. Participants will leave this session with the tools, videos, and training to implement this targeted instruction.