The Sunnyside School District has been hard at work ensuring students are meeting state benchmark standards and some recent test results indicate something is working.
A recent test of first grade students revealed that 77 percent are meeting standards. Eric Sylling, Summit/MERIT Grants Director for the district, revealed that the results are a "significant increase" over last year.
Sylling told the Sunnyside School Board last night that a larger portion of classrooms are meeting walk-through standards set by the district. These standards include requirements that classroom work meet grade-level standards and the level of work challenges students to use a variety of cognitive skills.
These cognitive skills are based on Bloom's Taxonomy, a widely used learning hierarchy, and include knowledge recall, information application, synthesis, comprehension, analysis and evaluation.
Based on classroom walk-through data, Sylling said classrooms meeting their standards increased from 50 percent last year to 80 percent this year.
Julie Kassissia from Teachscape, a research and professional development company that has monitored Sunnyside's use of classroom walk-throughs, commended the work of the Sunnyside School District staff, including Sylling.
But Sylling says that much of their work is still ahead of them.
"Just walking through a classroom doesn't change the world," Sylling said, "but it is a way to understand what is going on in the classroom and how to aid them."