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Meteach Meteach is offline
 
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Meteach
 
Joined: Apr 2008
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RISC experience...Reinventng Schools
Old 06-13-2010, 05:51 PM
 
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I am looking for teachers who have experience with the ReInventing Schools Coalition. Need to know the positives of your experience, how long your district has been working at it and if you have seen any changes in your students or your test scores.

Interested in all aspects of your experience.....my district is headed this way. Thanks in adv.


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maryteach maryteach is offline
 
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maryteach
 
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My district
Old 06-13-2010, 06:29 PM
 
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works with RISC. We did first implementation of standards-based last year. It was quite a year!

Positives:

I like the goal setting.
I like having only two or three levels in a day, not eight.
When some kids see other kids pass the level, it inspires them too. SOME kids.
I like the way my classes run with this. I like the individualization, but I was always really good at differentiating. Teachers who aren't good with that are going to freak out. You still do whole-class stuff, but there's a lot that's individualized too.

Negatives:

The record keeping for this is a NIGHTMARE and I'm not kidding you

The testing required for this is ridiculous. Kids have to be tested to be leveled, then they have to test on every single measurement topic within that level (and in my district, the teachers, of course, are the ones who get to keep track. I'm in middle, so I get to keep track for over 100 kids and it's not easy).

Most of the kids really, really hate it. RISC likes to tell you all about the student buy-in, but we haven't seen it yet. For one thing, the 8th graders were really embarrassed and angry to be in classes with sixth graders, but that's how low a lot of them are. They also don't like to set goals or rate their efforts.

We don't know yet if it has changed our test scores. We won't see our scores till we go back in August. I seriously doubt if we will see a change after first implementation. I think it will take a while, and even RISC doesn't claim immediate results. The main reason we won't see an increase in scores for a while is that while we're teaching them at their correct level, they still have to take the state test with their age mates. So if a kid is working at a sixth grade level, but they're an eighth grader, they still take (and flunk) the eighth grade state test.

One thing I'm seeing in our district is that you can set goals and do data-driven dialogues and all the RISC stuff till you're blue, but if the classroom instruction is sub-par, well, we're just putting lipstick on a pig, you know what I mean? One of our "beacon teachers" (RISC calls the ones who get trained and then trains the rest "beacon teachers") is truly just the crappiest teacher within her content area that you ever saw. I mean, she got all the SBS stuff down pat, but her instruction totally lacked. She wasn't the only one, either.

Anyway, yeah, we've worked with RISC for about three years now and just did first implementation last year. Rich DiLorenzo kind of likes to hear himself talk and can be a little bit annoying. There's lots more to say. PM me if you like.
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Meteach Meteach is offline
 
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Meteach
 
Joined: Apr 2008
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Thanks for your input....need opinions
Old 06-14-2010, 02:56 AM
 
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Our training is next week....but a few teachers have done that during the school year.

I will have questions during or after our training....that is when I'll PM you. Thanks so much!

Anyone else want to weigh in on RISC??
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