THE SCOOP FROM MR. JUPE
UPDATE - MARCH 18, 2011
To view a PowerPoint slide show given by Mr. Jupe at a recent school board meeting about Credit for Proficiency, please click on the following link. The file is in pdf format.
Credit for Proficiency Slide Show
UPDATE - FEBRUARY 1, 2011
“Credit For Proficiency” Tenets For TDWHS (1/25/201)
As we work towards a fully integrated model of Credit by Proficiency, we continue to modify our practices to best meet the needs of our students and prepare them for life after high school. The following is a summary of our current tenets, which are a work in progress.
- We, as teachers, are now focused on Learning targets and away from School Process.
- At any time in any of our classes, any student will be able to iterate what the learning is for the class on that day.
- Our intent is that students become independent learners under credit for proficiency.
- Our goal is that all students graduating TDWHS become Career and College ready
- Standards provide the basis for all learning.
- Proficiencies correlate to one or more of the prescribed course standards.
- Assessments provide both formative and summative functions for teachers and students.
- Alternative assessments will be promoted to cater for multiple intelligences and individual learning styles.
- Assessments are the basis upon which a student earns credit.
- Assessments must be tightly secured.
- There will be multiple assessment instruments for each assessment required for credit.
- Homework and classroom assignments are necessary for practice so that student learning can occur.
- We will check homework and classroom assignments.
- Homework and classroom assignments are for feedback only.
- Students, in principle, may retake assessments multiple times within the course timeline in order to gain proficiency.
- Students may strive for mastery levels by retaking assessments according to departmental guidelines as decided through the collaborative process.
- In a semestered course, students will have up to four and a half weeks after the last day of the semester to meet proficiency and earn credit for that course.
- In a year-long course students will have up to the last day of the student school year to meet proficiency and earn credit for that course.
- In a semestered course students cannot upgrade beyond proficiency after the last day of the semester, except through specific collaborative agreement within that department.
- In a year-long class students cannot upgrade beyond proficiency after the last day of the student school year, except through specific collaborative agreement within that department.
- At the end of a course, students who still have not met all the proficiencies will have to repeat that course next year or take summer school to ‘meet’ in all the assessments.
- Teachers and students are expected to use TAT time effectively and efficiently to re-teach, relearn and retake assessments.
- In principle, all students will be assessment prepared, to the extent of a positive predictable outcome, prior to any form of summative assessment being administered.
- We will be limited to a maximum of 10% of the grade in any given course as defined by Oregon Department of Education’s Career Related Learning Standards. This weighting might evaluate aspects of student ‘work’ other than the course assessments. i.e. work habits, tardies, classroom participation, and personal presentation and more.
- We recognize the major supporting role our TDUB SPIRIT has in ensuring successful academic outcomes for our students.
UPDATE - SEPTEMBER 14, 2010
As you walk around our campus you will see several upgrades to our school. I think it is important that everyone understands where the resources came from to create these new features.
- Electronic Reader Board and school sign:
Our old sign was dilapidated and did not present the school in a good light and the old Reader Board was hard to re-message so our messages were often out of date and therefore not useful for the community. Changing letters on the old board was hazardous because, to create a new message, students had to climb high ladders in all weathers.
This improvement was funded through fundraising by several years of our ASB classes as well as contributions from Jostens ‘the ring people’ and Athletics. None of the money came from any source that could have been used for educational funding
- Flat Screen TV’s in Chat’nChew
Two flat screen TV’s have been installed in the Chat’nChew. These were purchased by Sodexo, our Food Services Contracting Company; none of the funds came out of the school district.
- New Computers in the Career Center
These new computers were purchased by our insurance company to replace those damaged by a flood last year.
Credit By/For Proficiency
I hope my mailed out letter in August alerted you to some changes we are gradually making to our academic program over the next year. In that letter I specified that we were moving toward a “Credit For Proficiency” model for learning in TDWHS by September 2011. This model has been used by a growing number of Oregon high schools and those schools have shown impressive growth in OAKS data as well as improved PSAT, ACT and AP scores. Teachers have been impressed by improved student attitudes to learning and students are leaving high school feeling better prepared for college.
The emphasis in Credit for Proficiency classes is on common formative assessments that are linked to the course standards and test student learning based on the specific standards. Homework and class assignments are important features of student practice towards learning, but they are not graded. The assessments however, do count and are graded and it is through success on the assessments that the student eventually gets credit for the course, based on the fact that they have proved that they have learned the standard to proficiency and/or mastery.
Developing, comparing and quality controlling “Credit For Proficiency” courses takes careful work and will be undertaken by teachers over this coming year and probably in the summer as well. During the year teachers will be working very closely at times with teachers from other schools who have successfully developed and taught the same courses in other districts in Oregon. Each course’s standards have to be carefully analyzed for proficiencies and common formative assessments have to be created.
‘D’ or ‘F’ Grades
This Fall we moved to eradicate ‘D’ and ‘F’ grades. We did this for many reasons experienced both from our own The Dalles experiences and because so much research has pointed to the detrimental effect of these ratings on student learning.
- We were concerned that many students have become so used to ‘F’s’ and /or ‘D’s’ that the negative effect of these failing grades is lost on some students; they no longer seemed to worry that they might ‘fail’
- Teachers are naturally ‘caring’ people and so often give ‘D’s to students when they should have received an ‘F’ grade. Unfortunately this has the effect of earning the student credit and moving them to the next level in that subject area even though they have not learnt enough to either deserve the credit or survive at that higher level.
- An ‘F’ has hugely negative connotations for students at a visceral level under the traditional high school system. Whereas an ‘I’ “In Progress” grade, implies that a student has not yet achieved any credit in the class but should keep trying to learn since the responsibility for learning is still theirs and credit is still possible. In other words, “keep trying” and “try again. Hope is upheld for achieving learning and success is possible with continued effort.
F a i l u r e I s N o t A n O p t i o n
If you want to ask questions or find out more, please attend our meetings which will be held biweekly. The first one is Monday October 11, 2010 at 6:00 pm in TDWHS Library.
PRINCIPAL’S MESSAGE - September 2010
Last Spring our staff, students and community members participated in a “World Café” process, which allowed our school community to dialogue concerns about student progress, academic success and personal achievement. We received reams of data that had many common themes. Firstly, our school needed to present a more positive environment to encourage students in their personal habits and behaviors, secondly we needed to encourage academic achievement for all students and thirdly our standards and expectations for all students should be higher.
To this effect, you will all notice many changes this year. Firstly, teachers will be working throughout the year to re-plan their courses so that all TDWHS will be able to operate on the basis of Credit by Proficiency by September 2011. You may find that some classes are already running on a proficiency basis, where you will have to pass each proficiency in order to receive credit for that class. Theoretically, any student should be able to reach proficiency. However, your success will depend on whether you learn the material. But, you will have to prove that you have learnt the material to minimal proficiency by achieving a proficiency grade on each proficiency assessment. From now onwards, our school will not be issuing D or F to any student. Instead, a student will receive an ‘I’ indicating that you have “not yet” reached proficiency to receive credit. In order to rise above proficiency, you will have to prove mastery, by achieving a mastery score in the course assessments.
Secondly, as a building, we are planning a consistent, positive approach to the behavior of all members of our school community, which you will become very familiar with as SPIRIT. SPIRIT is the product of hours of work volunteered by members of our school community to produce positive rewards, incentives and common expectations for students and staff in our school. SPIRIT stands for our TDWHS values of Success, Pride, Integrity, Respect, Involvement, and Teamwork
This is going to be a challenging, rewarding and promising year for all of us. We are rooting for success for all our students! FINAO!!!