The Raytown C-2 School District is a fully accredited district. To see the most recent Annual Performance Report (APR), please visit this link to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education's website.For more information, please contact Dr. Janie Pyle, Associate Superintendent of Instruction or download items regarding Missouri School Imporvement Plan Cycle 5, including an explanation for reading APR's from the State here.
Based on questions posed from patrons and requested information, the following inquiries and responses are provided in an effort to share information about programs and curriculum associated with data represented on the APR:
What kind of programs does the district have in place to recruit community volunteers?
The Raytown District was saddened by the loss of YouthFriends approximately two years ago. In an effort to keep volunteers in schools, the district created RayFriends. In the 2013-14 school year, there were approximately 65 active RayFriends, each committing to spend one or more hours per week with students in elementary through high school. Additionally the district has entered into a partnership with Caring For Kids, a nonprofit organization which pairs schools with churches, businesses and individuals. Those partnerships are now in six elementary schools with plans to engage more schools in time. Lastly, the district has approximately 800 fully screened volunteers who tutor or read with/to students, help with field trips, assist with PTA events, serve as WatchDOGS (Dads of Great Students), and serve in many other ways.
What resources are available to parents and patrons who want to help with mathematics and other courses?
Several online resources are listed below:
Learn Zillion: This is a resource teachers across the US use to gain personal PD on the Common Core Standards. Parents can create a limited free account. Learn Zillion is what we would call a "Freemium" account, where limited content is readily available but you must become a paying member to access "premium" content. https://learnzillion.com/free_resources#
Khan Academy: Khan is working on aligning their content to the Common Core standards, but we believe it is still in progress. Parents can create an account and "add" their child to track mastery of grade level content.
https://www.khanacademy.org/parentCommon Core.org: This site contains handouts according to standard (not necessarily by grade) specifically designed to give parents tips for helping their child meet Common Core math expectations.
Additionally the district is sending information home with parents during conferences regarding how they can assist their children at home in math and ELA. The biggest changes are occurring at the elementary level. Middle and high school are mostly course related. In all instances instruction has changed to include more questioning and problem solving rather than just computation. This is the change with which some parents are having difficulty. We are happy to share information at any time about Common Core or the Missouri Learning Standards at any time.
In addition, students are very active with online programs that are used in the classroom and can be accessed from home. Parents work right along with the student as they complete the tasks. Many parents have taken full advantage of this opportunity to work with their children at home. These include but are not limited to:
1. A At the elementary and middle school levels we use the “FAST MATH” program as a part of our instructional program in Mathematics. This is a computation skills based program that instructs and assesses students through basic math facts. Each student has in home access to this program. It is very popular and widely used by our parents and students at home.
2. A At the elementary level the district also uses the “Istation” program as a part of our instruction program in English language arts. It is also available for parents and students to use at home and instructs and assesses in a variety of areas (phonemic awareness; letter recognition; decoding; vocabulary; text fluency to name a few). This program is widely used by parents and students. The district plans to provide this same programming to the secondary level as it becomes available.
In addition, the following web-based programming is suggested to parents at the beginning of the school year and/or during parent conferences:
Websites to use at home to help with Math:
http://www.coolmath.com/parents/ (skills review)
http://www.aaamath.com/ (skills review)
https://www.khanacademy.org/#Arithmetic (skills review)
http://bedtimemath.org/ (skills and math reading)
http://www.pbs.org/parents/education/math/ (parent information and skills review)
http://www.learningbox.com/base10/baseten.html (base ten)
http://www.oswego.org/ocsd-web/games/mathmagician/cathymath.html (fluency practice)
http://www.tvokids.com/games/stacking (shape sort)
http://www.oswego.org/ocsd-web/games/StopTheClock/sthec3.html (stop the clock)
http://statisticsonline.org/subtangent/mathionaire.swf (math millionaire)
http://www.eduplace.com/kids/mw/swfs/mathlingo_grade6.html (Math Vocabulary)
http://elemmath.jordandistrict.org/ (Math homework help)
http://illuminations.nctm.org/ (great site for games of all strands
How are students who come into the district introduced to the curriculum?
The response here is two-fold. First, standardization of a curriculum within the district makes it possible for our students to move from school to school within our system with little academic disruption. We have been standardized for some time now. Second, the Missouri Learning Standards will work in the same way when the state is in final agreement that these will indeed be the standards that we will address. Then when a student moves to another town or city WITHIN the state of Missouri they will be receiving in kind curriculum. This will not be the case, however, if Missouri chooses not to accept the Common Core standards. In that situation, the standards that we choose will not be the same as other states and logically the curriculum will also be different. What we can say is this: Standardized curriculum is the researched proven method of advancing student achievement. In Raytown we standardize our curriculum throughout the district so that all students receive an equal opportunity to meet and exceed our academic expectations.
What can be done to increase parental involvement and to support PTA?
The district supports the statement that parental involvement is important and a good outlet for that involvement is through PTA. The District is very connected with PTA, hosting at least two annual meetings at which the Superintendent or his designee shares information about district initiatives and programs. The Superintendent holds quarterly meetings with PTA Council at which representatives from each school are able to ask questions and share information. From district meetings with parents regarding such things as differentiated diplomas, youth sports, and bond issues, district administration has been able to connect with families. Twice yearly parent/teacher conferences keep communication lines open for families to chart student achievement.
How are students evaluated and placed into classes when they come to the District?
When a student enters into the school district, the student is placed in a grade appropriate classroom with a capable teacher that not only attends to that student’s academic needs, but also makes the student feel welcome and a part of the class as a whole. Quite often we do not have immediate access to the student’s academic records. The district has specific assessments given to students that can give us an overall idea of the student’s academic standing. We also have informal assessments that help us to know more about the student’s specific skills.The district places the student in academic small groups for instruction based on our assessments and observation. The goal is to instruct the student based on identified academic needs and move the student up to the highest level of achievement possible for that student. We heterogeneously group the students in our classrooms to ensure equal opportunities for education for all.
What efforts are being made to increase literacy and to ensure students have post graduate success?
In an effort to meet the needs of all students that enter and matriculate through Raytown Quality Schools, the District focuses on an education that promotes literacy and the specific academic skills necessary to create college and career students.
The District has in place in our schools the researched best practices in curriculum, instruction and assessment. But even the best of practices are based on the following assumptions:
A.h The District has a clear set of academic standards provided by the State that are consistently communicated for all grade levels and content areas specific to the state assessments (English Language Arts, Mathematics, Social Studies and Science) and;
B. T That the state assessments given to our students align with the standards given to us by the state.
These particular issues have caused disruption to District work, and curricular decisions will be difficult to make until the State has clearly identified the standards in which Missouri students will be assessed. That being stated, rest assured that Raytown Quality Schools focuses on the researched best practices that will provide our students with the academic success they will need to be academically ready and productive citizens.
1. T The District provides a standardized curriculum based on the academic standards currently identified by the State Board of Education. We have prioritized those standards by identifying those that we believe the students here in Raytown will need to know and be able to perform based on strong academic research.
2. T The District hires and retains teachers and instructional support staff that can teach to those standards through solid lessons and focused assessment.
3. T The District regularly assesses our students using benchmark and “progress-monitoring” in reading and mathematics and use that assessment information to adjust our instruction to make sure that the students are making good academic progress. We also use curricular unit assessments in specific content areas for this same purpose.
4. E Teacher leader teams meet to discuss our students’ progress and how we can better meet their needs.
5. T The District provides supports at every building for curriculum, instruction, student behavior, counseling and individual student assistance.
6. T The District provides professional development for our teaching staff that focuses on strong instructional planning and delivery. Administrators are in classrooms constantly to monitor lesson execution and student progress.
7. T The District invites parents to take an active part in the children’s education through academic nights, curriculum nights and student performances.
8. T The District offers leveled instruction and supports for all students whether they are behind grade level, on grade level or exceeding grade level.
9. T The District has successful before and after school care that has a strong academic program to support students with homework, tutoring and extended activities.
10. The District provides before and after school tutoring to students in various academic areas.
11. The District has successful co-curricular and extra-curricular activities that allow students to excel beyond the classroom.
12. Finally, the District provides the best education possible as a team of teachers and leaders that work together and not in isolation for the success of all students.