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Superintendent: Real Challenges Ahead, Imagine the Possibilities

This is a republication of the "Monday Morning Message" from Covington Independent Public Schools Superintendent Lynda Jackson:

Spotlight on Unbridled Learning

With the release of the new assessment scores, I felt it imperative to review the Next-Generation Learners, the main component of Unbridled Learning and the measures of student performance on various tests. Points will be awarded based on how well a school performs on each measure.

Achievement - Just as in the past, elementary and middle school students' scores will be labeled as novice, apprentice, proficient or distinguished. Kentucky's goal is 100 percent proficiency for all students. Remember that the previous assessment, schools could score up to 140 points.  At high school, achievement is based on end-of-course exams and an on-demand writing test. 

Gap - Schools will compare test results for African-American, Hispanic, Native American, special education, low income and limited English proficiency students, combined into one gap group, to results for other students who aren't in those categories. 

Growth - A statistical program will measure how much students' scores are improving from one year to the next. 

College/Career Readiness - Schools and districts will provide information about how many students are ready for college and/or careers, based on test scores and certifications earned. 

Graduation Rate - Schools and districts will report how many students graduate within four years of high school.

As the scores are released, let's remember that across the Commonwealth that scores went down.  The new Common Core Standards were assessed this past spring with only a few months to plan. Our students were engaged for the first time in taking an assessment that was timed, and the goal is not 100, not 140.  We must thoroughly assess our scores and create a plan to address areas. 

I also wanted to take a moment and revisit some of my words on opening day.  The future of education is in OUR hands. We have very real challenges in front of us. 

But what if every student was reading on grade level by the end of the year; what if every 8th grade student was prepared to be successful in Algebra 1; what if we doubled in ONE YEAR the number of students that benchmark on the Explore, PLAN and ACT; what if the culture of our daily work includes ongoing collaboration to make sure we are meeting the needs of every student? What would the possibilities be for our practice and for student learning? 

What if the next generation of Covington leaders in education and government come from this district? Imagine the possibilities, imagine the ripples when the what ifs become reality. We must continue to set our goals and work daily with a sense of urgency to reach those goals. 

Kudos

  • KUDOS to the Holmes marching band which finished sixth on Saturday in the State Quarterfinals, qualifying  for State Semifinals. Watch terrific video here: YouTube
  • KUDOS to Sarah Fortner, gifted and talented teacher, and the following Holmes students who attended the Young Women LEAD Conference at Northern Kentucky University on October 16:  Angel Bravard, Summer Cole, Julianna Fahlbush, Samantha Lang, Rebecca Simpson, Autumn Owens, Myranda Sheets, Samiya Stowers and Aleah Sturgill.
  • KUDOS to Tom Haggard, Stacie Strotman, Heather Anderson (Holmes), Kathy Koerner (Ninth District), Elizabeth Lenen (Glenn O. Swing) and Nicole Fryburger (Glenn O. Swing) for hosting community leaders at the Lights On After-School Bus Tour. Our community leaders saw the many great activities and hard work happening after-school in Covington.
  • KUDOS to the Sixth District administration and staff for their GREAT dedication on Friday of the new playground. Guest speakers, the band and a ribbon cutting ceremony culminated the grand reopening!  Thanks for all of the hard work and dedication to getting the new playground completed.
  • KUDOS to Eric Neff, site-based decision-making coordinator and Covington Partners for their great presentation on Wednesday evening at the Council-to-Council meeting.  Covington Partners provides many initiatives that we sometimes take for granted in our daily work.

What's up in the district?

  • It's RED RIBBON WEEK!
  • Principal Roundtable, Monday, 8:30 a.m., Instructional Support Center
  • Superintendent Awards, Ninth District, Tuesday, 7:15 a.m.
  • Focus Visit, Ninth District, Tuesday, 8 a.m.
  • Sixth District Family Resource Center Advisory meeting, Tuesday, 11 a.m.
  • Campus Attendance Team, Tuesday, 3:15 p.m., Holmes Campus
  • Superintendent Awards, Sixth District, Wednesday, 7:15 a.m.
  • Superintendent Student Leadership Council, Wednesday, 11:30 a.m.
  • Board Meeting, Wednesday, 7 p.m.
  • End of First Grading Quarter, Thursday
  • City Heights Family Night hosted by Latonia Elementary, Thursday, 5 - 7 p.m., City Heights
  • Directors' Meeting, Friday, 8 a.m., Central Office
  • Sixth District Red Ribbon Parade, Friday, 10 a.m.
  • James E. Biggs Fall Festival, 4:30 - 6:30 p.m., Biggs

Please ask every student and adult  to go on-line and take the pledge to be "Part of the Cure Against Bullying." Here's the link: www.kysafeschools.org/bullycure

PHOTO: Holmes High School/RCN file