Makalapa utilizes its School Community Council (SCC) board members to assist in the decision-making at the school. In the Academic and Financial Plan, we have focused our attention in trying to determine clear quarterly goals in the areas of reading, writing and math. Teachers strive to integrate common assessments, writing activities in content areas and the GLOs into our curriculum.
Success for All, a school-wide comprehensive reform reading program, was adopted in 1999-00. The school went to a literature-based program for reading in 2006 and continues to use this for Language Arts. Everyday Math was adopted in 2005; however, the school is using Singapore Math strategies and other CCSS-based resources.
To increase the capacity of our teachers to serve the diverse language arts and math needs of our students, Makalapa utilizes several computer-assisted programs: Reflex Math and Prodigy. We continue using Achieve 3000 in conjunction with the state selected Wonders program.
In preparation for SY 2005-06, teachers were trained in Step Up To Writing, standards-based reporting, school-wide grading policy, portfolios, curriculum mapping, and 6 Traits + 1 writing program. In 2008-2009, the staff began mapping out grade-level expectations and using data to measure the student progress to these expectations. It was a way for teachers to see what was actually being learned by students versus what was being taught by teachers. This data collection process was a good start to the Data Teams process.
During the 2011-12 School Year, teachers were trained in Thinking Maps to help our students make learning understandable for themselves through the use of graphics that organize their thinking and learning. In 2012-13, all teachers were trained in Data Teams, specifically looking at student work and using the data to determine instructional strategies that would meet the needs of the learners. Today, more than 75% of the teachers are trained in AVID, which is a complex initiative lead by Radford High School.
We have invested in the Edmentum, a computer-based program to help with formative assessments to assist instructional techniques and strategies. The universal screener (AIMSWeb) is administered three times a year to track the progress of our students in reading fluency.
Makalapa offers a wide variety of programs to our students. Robotics, Student Council, JPO and Inter-murals are offered to our students in grades 4-6. We believe that educating the whole child makes our students well rounded.