Monthly training to keep schools on track

SAN BENITO — Monthly workshops are a new effort to keep the San Benito school district on track.

District and campus administrators and teachers came together earlier this month to create an assessment for the 4th six weeks grading period.

The assessments were created to ensure that campuses were meeting the goals set by Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills, or TEKS, during each grading period.

The new initiative that involves assessment workshops and training falls in line with the goal outlined by Superintendent Dr. Nate Carman.

Gina Ortiz, director of assessment, research and evaluation, said similar initiatives have been done in the past, but not as regularly as the new one.

“I think it’s great,” Ortiz said. “I think it’s going to benefit the students and teachers on the campus level to provide the best education for the students in the district.”

Participants at the workshop reviewed curriculum and instruction goals, student expectations and data.

Monthly workshops will look at past grading periods and depending on the results, the assessments will be adjusted accordingly.

“The goal of these workshops is for the campuses to be able to work closely and in collaboration with the district and administration to ensure that expectations are being met,” Ortiz said.

According to Ortiz, individualized assessments will let administrators know whether teachers will need to reteach parts of the curriculum and develop a focus on the weak areas.

Administration and campus leaders reviewed the recommended pacing and content standards for selected courses to align with the assessments.

Campus teachers from all grade levels were represented during the workshop and had the opportunity to receive training through Kilgo Consulting, a firm that conducts and applies educational research to training to improve student achievement in line with curriculum programs.

Teachers had the opportunity to take the training they received during the workshop to their campus for those who did not attend.

What are TEKS?

TEKS stands for Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills. It is the state standard for public schools and details curriculum requirements for every course from kindergarten through 12th grade.