Goal 1: By June 1, 2016 80% of juniors will link their PSAT results with KHAN Academy.
Through a series of targeted lessons we assisted students in grades ten and eleven in understanding the redesigned SAT/PSAT and linking 87% of student in the junior class to KHAN Academy. As a part of our PSAT curriculum we stressed the unprecedented value of individualized practice available through KHAN’s new site. In some of the mixed grade classes that we presented in, the seniors commented that they wished they had been provided this resource. Additionally, we reviewed the PSAT results with the administration, math department, and language arts department to facilitate the conversation around testing support for students scoring below the benchmark score of five hundred. Juniors’s identified through this process were provided direct math support during advisory by two department members, and the language arts teachers embedded weekly practice into their curriculum focused on the skill gaps identified on the PSAT. Exit slips and an audit of KHAN accounts were used to evaluate the effectiveness of our lessons.
Goal 2: By June 1, 2016 there will be a 10% reduction of chronic absenteeism (10 or more absences) for all students in grades 6-12 compared to the 2014-2015 school year.
The 2015-2016 school year saw a new attendance policy at Shepaug Valley School. Once a student reached 10 unexcused absences they would not longer receive credit for a half year course and 20 absences for a full year course. An administrative secretary pulled attendance on a regular basis and flagged students with absence rates once they reached 5 absences. This information was given to the assigned counselor who would contact the family and counsel the student. In addition, letters regarding the policy were mailed home with details on the student’s absences. Counselors continued to monitor these students throughout the year and kept in constant contact with the students and their families. For students who had accrued over ten absences, counselors held family meetings and worked directly with the family and student. In the 2015-2015 school year there were 29 students who met the criteria of chronic absence (over fifteen days). Our student enrollment in grades six through twelve last year was 420 students which meant that less than one percent of the student population demonstrated chronic attendance. Through the directed intervention on the part of the counselors all 29 students were successful in completing their coursework and demonstrating improvement in their attendance and as a result, no student lost credit in a course due to absenteeism.
Goal 3: By June 1, 2016 all students in grades 6-12 will engage and reflect on their SSP in order to revise and align their future plan.
In July, 2012, the State of Connecticut implemented Public Act No. 11-135 which states; “For the school year commencing July 1, 2012, and each school year thereafter, each local and regional board of education shall create a student success plan for each student enrolled in a public school, beginning in grade six. Such student success plan shall include a student’s career and academic choices in grades six to twelve, inclusive."
Our department has systematically integrated this directive into our curriculum in grades six through twelve. Counselors and advisory teachers work closely with students to develop their Student Success Plans (SSP). We have a vested interest in working with students on their SSP’s throughout their time at Shepaug so that students are engaged in learning about their interests and strengths and continually revise and revisit their future plan. Our end goal is to ensure that each student leaves Shepaug with an informed, self-directed, and intentional post-secondary plan.. Counselors work to help students understand the relevancy of education in relation to achieving postsecondary educational and career goals. We strive to focus on the three core components: Academic Development, Career Development, and Social, Emotional and Physical Development.
One way we achieve this goal is by utilizing the program(s) Naviance in grades 9-12, and Career Cruising in grades 6-8. These programs are allow students to develop and document in, portfolio form, their SSP. Evaluation of classroom lessons were conducted through pre and post tests, exit slips, journal entries, Naviance reports, portfolio audits, informal assessments, and student summary statements. An audit of Career Cruising and Naviance showed that 100% of students achieved goal #3, either through classroom lessons or individually with their counselor.