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DIBELS Data Shows Growth at Bon Air

A recent report presented to Burrell School District’s Board of Directors from the Bon Air Elementary RtII/ Title I Team reveals continued progress in reading in all K-3 grades during the 2012-13 school year.

The report tracks percentage gains made by students from the beginning of the school year to the mid-year point, as well as growth achieved by Burrell students over a four-year time period.  It examines the percentage of students reading at benchmark, as well as those receiving strategic and intensive interventions as part of the district’s RtII program.

Since the district introduced the “What I Need” or “WIN” initiative at the start of the 2011-12 school year, reading proficiency rates at Bon Air have steadily climbed.

On the kindergarten level, this year’s class improved their DIBELS benchmark scores in reading by an impressive 12 percentage points (81% to 93%) during the first half of the 2012-13 school year.  This follows a similar increase during the same time period last year, where students improved from 72% proficiency to 86%.

Bon Air 1st-graders also made significant progress, with 89% of students now reading at benchmark compared to 78% at the beginning of the school year.  Benchmark scores for second and third grade students increased from 84% to 89%, and from 78% to 85% respectively during the 2012-13 school year.

The WIN literacy program focuses on targeted, short-term interventions in reading.  Students use their daily 30 minutes of WIN time to focus on their specific needs.  Every two weeks, teachers meet to review student progress and make sure all are receiving the appropriate level of support and interventions.

“I see students who were struggling in kindergarten now reading at benchmark in third grade,” says district reading specialist Autumn Turk.  “They’re feeling confident with their reading, and they are able to read aloud and talk about what they’re reading.  They love reading – you’ll see them with a book in their hands all the time.”

Ms. Turk points out that all students, even those already reading above benchmark, benefit from WIN.  She says that proficient readers use the time as an enrichment opportunity where they tackle chapter books and other more challenging texts.

“We’ve presented a growth report on our data every six months.  The numbers are good, but that’s only one aspect of the program.  We’re seeing the shift from ‘learning to read’ to ‘reading to learn’ in our classrooms,” says Ms. Turk.

In addition to presenting the DIBELS Next Growth Data report, the RtII team also made a video featuring individual student perspectives on the program.  “We wanted the board to see the program through our kids’ eyes,” explains Ms. Turk.

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