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High School Multi-Tiered Support System (MTSS)

December 15, 2015

Dear Parents and Guardians:

For the past 8 years we have worked to improve the support our students receive, but have never truly changed the system of support.  We have found that doing the same thing and expecting different results often prevents us from reaching our overall goals.

Many times some students need an explanation or individual instruction, others need to finish assignments, and yet others need enrichment in areas they are passionate about or have interest in. 

With the state and federal governments demanding that students take certain courses and levels of curriculum the school day is filled, with no time for the support stated above.   Beginning January 6th our MTSS (Multi-Tiered Support System) team of teachers has recommended that we devote 30 minutes, four out of five days a week to provide support and time for all Oskaloosa High School students to achieve more. 

We all truly want our students to do well and be proud of themselves and their school. For this system or any system to work, the people involved need to commit to it and that is where you as parents come in.  We at the high school need you to commit with us.  We want the best for our students and so do you.   We truly need you to reinforce this new support system.  If your student is required to be in attendance because of low grades, work with us to improve their grades.  If your student wants to work with a teacher on a passion or interest, by all means help make it happen during this time.  And lastly if your student is released at 3:00 for good grades and yet they have to wait for the bus, encourage them to use this time to work on schoolwork with teachers who are available to help. 

We know that there will need to be adjustments once we get into the system and want you to know that we will be evaluating and making changes when we see problems arise.

I am including the information and permission sheet each student was given on Wednesday December 9th.  We have asked the students to have you read and sign the sheet, then bring it back to their homeroom teacher. 

On behalf of everyone at the high school, thank you for all of your support and we wish you a Happy Holiday season.

 

Oskaloosa High School Learning Supports Program
Frequently Asked Questions

 

1. Why are we offering this program?   

The Learning Supports Program is intended to help us improve learning outcomes for all students, and will play an important role as we work to achieve a number of goals: 

□  help each student achieve at least one year’s growth in each Iowa Assessment testing area, and average 1.5 year’s growth.

□  by 2017-18, OHS will be in commendable range on the Iowa School Report Card

□  reduce # of D’s and F’s by 15% from previous year

   

 2. How will it work?  
A key aspect of this program is that it provides additional time and support to students who need it.  Each Wednesday, homeroom teachers will run a grade report for their homeroom students, and will notify students with low grades that they will be assigned to attend Learning Supports for the next four days from 3:00 - 3:30. (Thursday, Friday, Monday, & Tuesday).  Then, each day, these students will check in with their homeroom teacher, and will either be assigned to attend a “Skills Session” with a subject area teacher, or a guided study hall with their homeroom teacher. 

Students with all grades of C- or better in all classes will be able to leave school at 3:00 p.m. on Learning Support Days IF a parent has submitted a signed Parent Permission Form agreeing to this.

 

3. What if my child typically has good grades in all classes but I prefer for them to remain in school during Learning Supports time?  
Students won’t be dismissed prior to 3:30 unless a signed parent permission form has been submitted.

 

4. How can this program benefit students who already have good grades in all classes? 
During learning Supports time, any student can choose to: 

□ work in their homeroom to complete assignments (a valuable opportunity, especially  for students who may be busy with work, extra-curricular activities, and other responsibilities!)

□ request to work with one of their teachers if they would like extra help

□ participate in a number of enrichment activities.

 

5. What kind of enrichment activities might be offered for students who are doing well in their classes but will be staying until 3:30? 
Enrichment activities will be added over time, based on student interests.  We hope to soon be providing additional learning opportunities such as ACT test preparation, clubs, organization meetings, extended learning projects, etc.

 

6. How will this program affect instructional time in my child’s classes? 
On Learning Supports Days, each class period will be reduced by only 5 minutes.  Classes will be 45 minutes long instead of 50. 

 

7.  How will parents know if their child needs to stay for learning supports each week?
Parents can check their student grades in the Parent Portal. If their child has any grade below a C- as of Wednesday, they will be expected to attend Learning Supports for the next four school days. They can also check with their child’s homeroom teacher If they have any questions about their child’s grades. (See Staff Email Directory for contact information)