From The Trussville Tribune staff reports
TRUSSVILLE — The Trussville City School System’s new assistant superintendent of curriculum is already working to take graduates to the next level.
Dr. Lisa Berry is focusing on ACT preparation. An ACT score is one of the most important aspects of a college application. Berry hopes to see improvement in scores next spring.
“I spent a lot of time researching what other schools are doing and themes emerged,” said Berry. “A lot of these things we are already doing but some of them we can do at a deeper level.”
Those things include teaching standards, student progress monitoring, professional development, teaching to a level that requires answers to thought-provoking questions, strategy development and mock testing, among other things.
Berry and other school leaders have formed a task force to find out what changes can be made and how they should be implemented. The group has already brought in College Prep Alabama to work with middle school teachers. Next up, mock testing. Juniors at Hewitt-Trussville will be given a mock test in October. When scores come back, the task force will bring in 20 teachers to analyze the data.
The analysis will be used for intense study starting in February 2020.
“We are going to run a boot camp for all of our juniors about a month out from test time to really do a deep dive into the areas that they can improve on,” said Berry.
The task force also found a way to introduce positive reinforcement for students. Students identified graduation cords as a way to inspire them to do well on tests. Berry said she wants to broaden the scope of cords for the ACT.
“We want to do a better job at recognizing kids that might score a 22 or 23 because that gets you money for college and that’s still worthy of recognition,” said Berry.