Our work at the Dudley Street School is centered around two goals:
- By third grade, every student will be proficient in reading, writing, and problem solving—important indicators of future success in school.
- Every graduate will be on a path to attend college and serve as a responsible citizen and contributing community member.
With formal and informal assessments, our teachers frequently assess student learning to ensure every student is on track to meeting these ambitious goals.
Focus on Literacy
To track our students’ progress in literacy, we use the nationally recognized Strategic Teaching and Evaluation of Progress (STEP) assessment tool, designed by the Urban Education Institute in Chicago.
STEP measures students’ progress in eleven areas, from accurate letter and word recognition and fluency, to more advanced comprehension skills. Frequent STEP assessments help teachers, after-school providers, and families understand what they must do to help each child reach reading proficiency.
Our teachers use STEP data to tailor instruction within the context of team teaching and flexible grouping to ensure that the individual learning needs of all student are met. For example, if a first grader is still struggling with letter identification, she might be grouped with a teacher who is expert at teaching that skill and students who need similar support. STEP’s detailed, actionable data allows us to customize our support so that each child becomes a fluent reader.
Assessment Across the Curriculum
The Dudley Street School will implement a similar progress-monitoring system for math and writing. All content areas will work in six-week cycles, using assessments developed by teachers to gauge students’ progress toward meeting the Common Core standards for each discipline. More importantly, the data collected from these assessments will be used to inform instruction that provides students with what they need, when they need it in all content areas.