Dear Parents and Guardians,
First, allow me to give you some background history. One of the benefits North Carolina public schools offer parents is transparency. The North Carolina School Report Cards provide parents with information on such key issues as student performance, teacher experience, and school safety. Data is provided at the school, district, and state levels to enable parents to compare the performance of their student’s school with others across the district and state. Legislation (G.S.115C-83.15) passed during the 2013 long session of the North Carolina General Assembly provides an additional measure of school performance in the form of School Performance Grades. Beginning with the 2013-14 school year, the annual North Carolina School Report Cards display a letter grade of A, B, C, D, or F for each school in the state. The School Performance Grades are based 80 percent on our school’s achievement score (student proficiency) and 20 percent on student’s academic growth.
Next, the purpose of this letter is to inform you that at The Institute for the Development of Young Leaders, we received a School Performance Grade of D for the 2014-2015 school year. Our students scored 38% in Reading, 35% in Math, and 43% in Science. While we are on an upward trajectory from the previous year, we are committed to improving this score each year. While it is important to remember that just as no one single score or grade tells the whole story of a student, neither does it tell you everything about the performance of a school or the opportunities that our school provides.
Our teachers are working to differentiate learning by using Project Based Learning as our primary instructional delivery model. However, since research also support more individualized approaches, teachers are continuing to receive training on using small group instruction. They are using strategies like guided reading and peer-to-peer instruction to provide intensive instruction on a daily basis in all core subjects to promote the development of the various components of reading proficiency to students that show minimal progress. One of our top priorities for the 2015-2016 is to improve our School Performance Grade.
Therefore, we have continued to work with a reading program named Lexia. This program provides differentiated instruction for students using immediate corrective feedback, multiple levels of scaffolding, and explicit instruction both online and through direct instruction with the teacher. Students work independently to develop reading skills in a structured, sequential manner with a focus on foundational skills to develop automaticity and fluency, listening and reading comprehension, and vocabulary. We have also continued to focus on building a stronger foundation in reading by training all teachers on MClass Assessment. Using this program teachers can assign reading levels and monitor progress to support mastery of increasingly complex text.
We hope you will closely follow your student’s academic progress and work with his or her teacher to help ensure they stay on track academically. Working together as a team, we can improve not only how well our students are performing individually, but how our school is performing as a whole. There is nothing more important to administrators and teachers at IDYL than ensuring that your student is ready for the next step in their academic career. I look forward to working with you to make sure your student is on track for success.
Personally, as a resident of the Durham community for three decades, with my own family (my husband Vernon, two daughters, Precious, a graduate of NC State University, and Tiffany, a graduate of UNC-Charlotte, and son, Omar, a student at Morehouse College), not only am I well aware of what a parent’s needs are, but I am eager to join my family with yours, as we create the IDYL learning environment for our students! If we have not yet met, directly, I look forward to meeting you soon!
If you have any questions or concerns regarding our School Performance Grade and how we plan to improve, please don’t hesitate to contact me, Charlotte Wilson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-973-4178.
Charlotte Wilson, M.Ed.