The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

April 24, 2013

District 118 rejects, then resurrects proposal



  • Extend learning time for all students.
  • Interventions and supports to improve learning and achievement of standards.
  • Collaboration with a lead partner.
  • Incentives for teachers and staff.
  • Include student growth in teacher evaluations.

The plan proposes to improve student achievement by implementing curriculum aligned to Common Core State Standards, develop and implement common assessments schoolwide and develop academic and behavioral interventions.

The grant requirements include:

  • Implementing a staff evaluation system for principals and teachers that includes being evaluated on student growth.
  • Implementing a system of rewards, including $500 and $1,000 bonuses for DHS teachers if school goals are met. They are: 55 percent of DHS students meeting or exceeding standards in reading/language arts as well as math in 2014, 70 percent in 2015 and 85 percent in 2016. The first year goal for attendance is 92 percent in 2014, increasing to 96 percent by 2016, and a 10 percent decrease in behavioral incidents each year of the three-year grant.
  • Creating common assessments schoolwide to drive instruction.
  • Implementing a summer bridge (summer school) program to help struggling eighth-graders before they start ninth grade at DHS.
  • Creating a safety/enrichment period.
  • Implementing a “double dose” of math and literacy classes for ninth graders.
  • Implementing a senior seminar based on math career skills and literacy career skills.

The proposed changes at DHS outlined in the plan include:

  • Implementing 30 minutes of intervention/enrichment period.
  • Extending the school day by 15 minutes, which would be combined with the current homeroom period to create the intervention/enrichment period.
  • Implementing staff evaluations that include student growth.
  • Tapping instructional leaders that are trained in heavy coaching.
  • Designating a literacy coach.
  • Designating a math coach.
  • Hiring a behavioral interventionist.
  • Hiring a transformational officer who would work in collaboration with the principal.

If awarded, the grant would fund several new positions at the high school to implement the transformation model, including the transformation officer, behavioral interventionist, a data analyst and lead teachers. In addition, the Consortium for Educational Change (CEC) — a nonprofit partner selected by the district — would guide the district through the process of including student growth in teacher evaluations and would provide a full-time position onsite at DHS to support the reform efforts.

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