2000-09-23 / Columnists

Focus on 27 Community School District News and Notes

Deputy Superintendent
By Michele Lloyd-Bey

Focus on 27
Community School District News and Notes

District 27 welcomes its school communities to what we believe is going to be a wonderful and challenging school year ahead for our students.

The New York State Learning Standards and the New Standards: Performance Standards, (customized for New York City by the National Center for Education and the Economy at the University of Pittsburgh) have set an exciting stage for educational reform for all children in our city and across the country.

On both the local and national levels, a tremendous focus has been placed on literacy. Across District 27, the emphasis will be on improving literacy in all of our schools at every grade level.

To begin, we have established "clear expectations" for every school and its members. All students in grades K-8 are expected to read at least 25 books or book equivalents as indicated in New York City’s New Standards for English Language Arts.

To encourage children to read more in school, we are requiring that schools begin to establish libraries with leveled readers in all classrooms. Additionally, we are requesting that all students possess a library card and visit the library throughout the school year as often as possible.

Since students are now expected to take and pass Regents Examinations in order to graduate from high school, a greater focus will be placed on having teachers teach in the content areas (science, social studies).

We are encouraging all of our students to begin reading more non-fiction material. This will better prepare them for the upcoming Standardized Tests by increasing their knowledge base of real-life events and broadening their vocabulary.

District 27 continues to be the forerunner in Computer Technology. All of our schools have been wired for Internet accessibility. Many other schools have a computer program sponsored by the Board of Education, "Project Smart".

We are taking steps to completely integrate technology into all of our classrooms within the district, while continuing to provide teacher support through professional development on an on-going basis.

You can find out about some of these programs and other educational topics by attending the District’s Quarterly Meetings.

The quarterly meetings for the 2000-2001 school year are as follows:

September 26, 2000

M.S. 198 7:00 p.m.

365 Beach 56 St.

Arverne, N.Y. 11692

January 8, 2001

M.S. 210 7:00 p.m.

93-11 101 St.

Ozone Park, N.Y. 11416

March 20, 2001

M.S. 180 7:00 p.m.

320 Beach 104th St.

Rockaway Park, N.Y. 11694

June 4, 2001

M.S. 226 7:00 p.m.

121-10 Rockaway Blvd.

So. Ozone Park, N.Y. 11420

Another source of information for our community can be obtained by attending the "Back to School Night" orientation events planned by each school. Please contact your child’s school for specific date and time for your school’s activities.

District 27’s Curriculum Center will continue to develop handbooks for our schools that emphasize ways in which teachers can create activities that support the standards.

Our goal is to create classrooms within all of our schools that are challenging, motivating, print-rich, standards-based and full of materials that promote learning.

There are many viable programs and initiatives that District 27 has to offer. Assessment is going to be a key component to both the teaching and learning process throughout the year. Assessment and the evaluation of students’ work provide parents and teachers with information that shows what the child has mastered. Students in both elementary (grades 3-5) and middle schools (grades 6-8) will be administered district level assessment tests.

In an effort to continue the support of our teachers and teaching staff, a series of professional development workshops has been scheduled by the district office staff. Teachers will receive professional development in science, math, early childhood education, bi-lingual education, literacy, and social studies. Teachers will also be able to refine their craft with the help of the site-based Instructional Specialist. One Instructional Specialist has been allocated to every school.

Our vision and mission is clear. It is our hope to work closely with parents/guardians and the community at large to maximize the educational success for all of our children.

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