The enthusiasm for academic achievement was announced at the Moose Lake School Board monthly meeting on Monday, October 18. Legacy of Excellence took the stage to showcase the success of one of their pioneering programs called Student Bridging the Gap for elementary school students. This tutoring program is becoming a great legacy in the lives of many young people in the hopes of making it an annual programming opportunity.
Spokeswoman Sasha Narayan, administrator of the free access program, reports that all students showed improvement in reading, math, or both throughout this nine-week summer tutoring program. The program enrolled 26 students who met twice a week with eight fantastic student tutors, either in small groups or one-on-one. In just three hours a week, K-6 students improved both the phonetic-based curriculum and the fundamentals of math.
“The tutors really appreciated that!
They provided such personalized and thoughtful feedback
to the students and families with whom they worked, ”says Narayan.
The objectives of the program were 1) to strengthen the standards of the previous grade level, 2) to reduce the loss of information retained over the summer, 3) to build a solid foundation for the new school year, 4) to provide a beneficial service that Moose Lake Community School is not normally able to fund. In accordance with Minnesota academic standards, the Plaid Phonics program measured fluency, accuracy, and comprehension. The results show that in the pre-tests, only 11 students were at their appropriate grade level, five students were two grades below, two were three grades below, and one student was above their appropriate grade. Post-phonetics tests yielded positive results with an increase of 12 students to their appropriate grade level, one student two grades below, one student three grades below, and four exceeding appropriate grade levels. Mathematics was similar in Evan Moor’s math curriculum achieving a fluency level of 81-100% for 12 students, unlike the eight pre-tests and no student had less than 40% fluency in math.
Not only is the program academically successful, it is important for students to learn from each other and foster peer support. Through community sponsors and grants, Legacy of Excellence has been able to invest in this program for prospective Bridging the Gap students.
Legacy of Excellence is a foundation that supports and enables innovative programs at the Moose Lake School. They were also instrumental in helping fund the equipment for the ML Early Childhood Playground and creating the Sensory Journey in honor of Drew Nordstrom. They plan to offer scholarship opportunities, continue to purchase school supplies and future tutoring through Student Bridging the Gap.
Superintendent Billie Jo Steen, highlighted the strategic planning sessions underway to address and target the changes needed for the district. She also identified the decline in student enrollment since the start of the school year; this has an impact on funding but does not appear to be related to COVID-19 protocols and preparedness planning. Principal Kraig Konietzko provided a basic report thanking the Moose Lake Fire Department for their annual contribution to children and the faculty for fire prevention and safety. This year’s MEA includes professional development to provide training on the STAR assessment for the assessment of reading and math. The school collaborated with Brad Hubred to provide the Blue Ribbon School and Community Kick-Off which educates on suicide prevention and positivity. Konietzko has closed to provide an update that the annual Fall Festival Parade will take place on October 29 and will air like last year to be seen live via YouTube on the sports network. Ryan Stewart, principal of the high school, reports that they are moving forward with the reading and math intervention program for grades 7 and 8, looking at fidelity and necessary adjustments. Stewart commended the high school students for adjusting so positively to the new mask wearing requirements, as well as the student council and teachers for their tremendous work and persistence in making Reunion Week a success. Parent-teacher conferences for high school students will traditionally / in person on October 26 and primary conferences will be held on November 18. Regular school board meetings are open to the public and usually take place on the third Monday of the month; Due to scheduling conflicts, the next meeting will be on November 29, 2021.