Lower School Academic Support
We recognize and honor the fact that every child learns differently, and seek to provide the best supports to guide each child’s success.
Classroom teachers provide differentiated instruction to meet students’ diverse learning needs. In addition, through a combination of observation and research-based assessments, we get to know each child’s individual learning style, as well as their areas of relative strength and weakness.
This process gives us the earliest opportunity to identify learning differences that may require additional support, and informs our instructional planning to best meet the child’s academic, social, emotional, or behavioral needs. Some of the tools we use to evaluate LS students’ progress include:
Each year, LS students take the Pearson Developmental Reading Assessment to assess their reading readiness, accuracy, fluency, and comprehension. The tests help identify struggling and emerging readers so that we can customize a plan to provide the support they need.
Students in Grades 3, 4, and 5 take the ERB Standardized Test in the fall. The results help us determine whether the existing learning process is working well for the student, or if they can benefit from additional support.
In addition, if a family, in consultation with school personnel, proceeds to seek outside educational evaluations for their child, the Division Head and/or the Academic Support Coordinator/Reading Specialist will review and share the results with the teachers who are working with that student.
Students in Grades 1, 2, and 3, who are below the reading benchmark thereby requiring support with phonics, decoding, and fluency, meet in small groups with a reading specialist. In Grades 4 and 5, students’ needs are met in small group settings in the classroom.
Students with documented learning disabilities may receive additional time for examinations (Extra Time Policy).
The Division Head, classroom teachers, and Academic Support Coordinator/Reading Specialist are in regular communication with each other, as well as with private tutors, other outside professionals, the school nurse and counselor, and parents.
LS Academic Support Team
Beth Beckmann, M.Ed.
Head of Lower School
B.A. Northwestern University
M.E.d. Loyola University of Chicago
Judith Sbrogna, M.Ed.
Academic Support Coordinator/Reading Specialist
B.A. and M.Ed. Worcester State University