The district will be transitioning to the New York State Common Core Learning Standards beginning with ELA (English Language Arts)and Math K-8 this year and continuing over the next several years. More information on the Common Core Learning Standards is available on the EngageNY website.
Effective teaching rests on challenging curriculum, responsive instruction and informative assessment. What follows is a brief overview of the efforts the Rye City School District makes to provide a strong foundation for successful learning.
Our instructional strategies focus on bringing this curriculum to every student through substantial differentiation. Instruction in Rye’s schools must be flexible enough to respond to the needs of children who learn in different ways. An assortment of instructional approaches address differences in students’ prior knowledge, personal interests and relative strengths and weaknesses in various subjects. The district provides special education and academic support services as required by law and good pedagogy. We also create targeted instructional support in key skill areas, such as the writing mentor program in the high school. Most important, perhaps, is our commitment to developing a broad range of instructional techniques, incorporating existing and emerging technologies as appropriate, that address the needs of all students: Teachers in the 3 elementary schools collaborate on instruction; middle school teacher teams meet regularly to discuss students and to coordinate instruction in different subject areas; departmental, faculty, and curricular meetings all contribute to making instruction responsive to the varied needs and interests of all students.
New York State requires that we assess our students in formal ways from grades K through 12 including: ELA and math assessments from grades 3-8; science assessments in 4th and 8th grades; various Regents exams at the secondary level. In addition, we administer standardized assessments to provide information about student progress as well as direction for instruction. Advanced Placement tests are taken by students who choose AP courses, and most students take either the SAT or ACT or both as part of the college application process. In addition to these well-known assessments, however, we also assess student progress in reading and mathematics using local assessment and we monitor students in informal ways daily as part of normal instructional practices. Although the public sees the results of “high stakes” testing reported in newspapers and national magazines, it is often the more subtle and frequent assessment used during daily and weekly instruction that enables teachers to modify lessons to address learning problems that emerge as children grow.
We are committed to continually developing our practice to best reach and successfully teach every student.
Rye City School District