No Child Left Behind. We have the right classroom materials if you need to implement an accelerated recovery program and/or employ emergency certified teachers! PAC offers instant relief for teachers involved in emergency certification programs or for teachers assigned to teach outside their major or minor fields or teachers who guide accelerated learning programs for under-performing students who must experience Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP).
PAC puts in the teacher’s hands a comprehensive course with ready-to-work daily lessons, weekly quizzes, and chapter tests—all ready for instant application in the classroom or accelerated learning recovery program. PAC courses are built in such a way that students learn and prepare for assessment exams when under supervision by either novice or experienced teachers! PAC is designed to produce “adequate yearly progress” (AYP) even when applied by personnel who are not “experts” in their assigned subjects.
The PAC approach is so practical that the average teacher eliminates hours a week in preparation time! Teachers can leave school at 3:30 refreshed and ready for a great evening free of lesson preparation demands.
With national emphasis being placed on educators to make sure that no child is left behind, PAC curriculum has immediate application right where teachers need assistance—core subjects available in a practical format that helps under-performing students to accelerate toward graduation and make AYP.
No Child Left Behind (NCLB) established a tough standard for academic accountability in public schools. Educators are pressured to address academic deficiencies identified by assessment instruments. Teaching-to-the-test is a reality in schools labeled “Low Performing.” Schools assessment scores can not continue operating in the pattern of status quo. Teachers are required to set up academic programs to prepare students to meet assessment standards through regular classrooms and/or individualized learning programs. PAC provides training and curriculum for implementing an effective academic recovery program.
Each state department of education publishes academic standards over which students will be assessed. In most states, schools are allowed to use previous state assessment instruments as guides by which to prepare students for exams. The state standards and previous tests are usually available on the state department of education web site.
Independent publishers also provide sample tests and assessment-preparation books and software to assist teachers in preparing students for specific state exams. Experience demonstrates that practice tests help students prepare for state assessments. Without them low performing students´ do not become sophisticated in test-taking skills. Moreover at-risk students have difficulty with the cognitive-based format of most test questions. PAC texts and companion activities address cognitive level test issues, thus reducing the need to purchase extensive supplemental test-preparation materials.
Some teachers begin to address assessment standards early in the fall semester and then put textbook or computer-based lessons on hold for four to six weeks in the late winter or early spring to address assessment criteria through application of supplemental educational material designed by publishers for specific state standards. Student report card grades for the applicable four to six weeks period of assessment preparation are usually based on lessons which include textbooks and/or computer-based software and/or specialized assessment-preparation materials purchased by the school.
Students who know that their assessment-preparation efforts “count” toward report card grades are much more likely to “tune in” and learn the knowledge and skills over which students will be assessed. Teachers who simply add assessment preparation but do not count lessons for report card grades usually experience student resistance and “foot-dragging.” That, of course, is reflected in low assessment scores for students and the school.
Each fall when teachers plan specific lessons to be covered during the school year to satisfy requirements for transcript credit, assessment-prep material should be incorporated. Schools which implement individualized learning programs (paper and/or computer-based) such as PAC texts and activities, should build assessment-prep materials into each student´s academic contract (individual education plan). This requires a bit of strategic planning to make sure state standards are addressed (assessment items) and local school requirements are met for specific course content to be completed for transcript credit.
The biggest challenge to teachers is to merge assessment-prep materials (print and/or computerized) into the local classroom procedure: lecture-based or individualized self-paced programs. Some providers of supplemental test-prep materials claim that their material adequately prepares students. That may or may not be true for specific student populations. The assumption is that students function on/at grade level in reading/language proficiency. Students identified with reading/language deficiencies require concentrated assistance to build reading/language proficiency before attempting to pass state assessments in reading, writing, math and/or core content. Such students need to experience pull-out recovery programs designed to equip students with phonetic-based reading skills.
Standard classroom teachers usually accommodate test-prep by simply putting regular classroom materials and procedures temporarily on hold for four to six weeks while teachers merge (or wedge in) assessment prep materials provided by a supplemental provider. Weekly lesson plans simply include assessment prep goals, objectives, skills and knowledge.
For individualized learning programs, such as Paradigm Accelerated Curriculum, the merge (or wedge in) process can be accomplished through a combination of individualized lessons (paper and/or computer) and/or daily or weekly seminars in which a skilled teacher tutors students who need additional help beyond exposure to regular course material and supplemental test-prep materials. Students who do not need additional help beyond the regular classroom experience and/or supplemental test-prep material should be allowed to proceed with individualized studies (PAC material) without interruption to attend seminars. (“If it isn´t broken, don´t fix it.”) Students who score below the threshold on practice tests or “old” state exams should be assigned supplemental material and/or seminar participation only in the low performance academic areas identified on the practice test.
Students who need “serious help” should be lock-stepped in daily/weekly seminars for four to six weeks prior to the date of the state assessment exam. Instruction should be based on supplemental material specifically related to the students’ academic skills and knowledge which are below the state threshold. The teacher should guide students daily through specific individualized lessons (print and/or computer). Daily lessons should be graded by the teacher, who then will prepare a seminar the next day to address specific academic skills which students did not master the previous day. The teacher and students progress through the supplemental test-prep material as a group and stop to “seminar” only when students demonstrate lack of understanding of items which will be assessed on the state exam.
Students enrolled in individualized learning programs such as PAC courses do best when required to set and complete specific daily academic objectives (goals) in courses. Goals should be set in such a manner and quantity that assures satisfaction of state standards and completion of all lessons prescribed for transcript credit. Moreover, daily academic goals should be set according to the student’s performance on assessment pre-tests. Some students may need to direct only an hour per day for the four to six weeks of time set aside for assessment preparation. Other students may need to “drop everything else” and focus all energy and effort daily on preparation for the state assessment exam. In such a circumstance, all academic goals related to assessment-preparation should be incorporated in the student´s academic prescription for transcript credit for the course on which the student will be tested on the state exam. In some situations, students who perform low in reading/language skills may need to be enrolled in “Remedial or Reading Enhancement Courses” for which transcript credit can be applied. Check with the state department of education list of acceptable local- or state- recognized high school courses.