Instruction and assessment designed to meet the needs of students and ensure readiness for future learning begins in the prekindergarten and kindergarten classrooms.
A core strategy update during the Jan. 16 meeting of the board of education provided trustees with information on Early Years Evaluation (EYE), an assessment tool used to gauge the developmental skills of young children in several areas.
The EYE is administered to four-year-olds in prekindergarten and all kindergarten students. The data is used by the teacher and school team to direct instruction with the goal of achieving the provincial outcome of having 90 per cent of children exiting kindergarten ready to learn.
As part of the work being done to achieve these outcomes, prekindergarten teachers implement specific strategies to enhance student language and learning. In kindergarten, the learning community interprets the data from the EYE and models strategies for inquiry-based 'learning invitations' that create a rich classroom environment that responds to the diverse needs of early learners.
Other highlights from the meeting included:
- The Nutrien Kamskénow program was the Celebrating Excellence segment of the meeting. Kamskénow provides hands-on, inquiry-based science and mathematics activities in community schools. Offered through the University of Saskatchewan's Science Outreach, the program is delivered by lecturers, senior undergraduate and graduate students with the support of classroom teachers. The goal is to strengthen science literacy with a long-term aim of increasing the participation of Indigenous people in the sciences.
- Trustees received results of the Canadian Achievement Test (CAT) administered during the fall of 2017. The CAT is a national standardized test given each year to students in grades four, eight and 10. The results are used by principals and teachers as an aid for school-level strategic and instructional planning and by the division to direct staff development and inform its strategic direction.
Reports and information presented at board meetings can be found at www.saskatoonpublicschools.ca. The next meeting of the Board of Education is Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018, at 7 p.m. The public is welcome to attend.