Thermopolis Independent Record - Your source for news in Hot Springs County

By Cindy Glasson
Reporter Photographer 

Fourth grade teachers report on challenge


October 18, 2018

The Hot Springs County School District’s Board of Trustees met on Tuesday night and heard a report from the Ralph Witters Elementary (RWE) fourth grade team.

RWE principal, Catelyn Deromedi, learned about a new system during a conference she attended called the “15 Day Challenge”, and turned that information over to the fourth grade teaching team, asking them to give it a try.

The teachers took the information and ran with it.

The challenge had them identifying the essential standards for fourth grade learning along with all the pieces that go along with it and consolidate their resources.

They created a tier system for interventions with students, from basic to intensive and set up a system to use the entire year in nine-week increments, using math as their initial test.

The team did pre-testing of the students to compile a base level for each one, did the teaching on the concepts and then re-tested the students 15 days later to find out what the difference was.

They reported seeing large jumps from the initial test to the second one, showing the process they had implemented was working.

Through all of this, the team worked together, teaching the exact same concepts.

In the end, they determined it was not only a good process for the students, but it also kept the teachers on track, using their time and resources more wisely, hitting targets in a more streamlined manner.

The board also heard a report from Nichole Ciz who is now in charge of the Title grants for the district.

Ciz reminded the board that RWE gets Title 1 funds each year and the Title 4 funds are divided between the middle school and the high school.

The funds do have certain stipulations on them such as how they are to be spent, like strictly for technology or for educational opportunities for staff.

The conferences various teachers attend are all paid for out of grant funding rather than coming out of the general fund, ensuring money is not taken away from the students.

Ciz indicated the district will be receiving about $30,000 more in Title funding this year than last, and they are working to find the right places to spend the funds.


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