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Parkview, Harris upper elementary
plot their plans for academic success

By By Georgia E. Frye / staff writer
Oct. 16, 2003
Teachers and staff at Parkview and Harris Upper elementary schools believe they can raise their schools' low performance levels by improving reading skills and increasing parental involvement.
Parkview and Harris received a Level 2, or "under-performing," accreditation rating this year. Last year, Harris Upper was rated Level 1, or "low-performing," while Parkview had a Level 2 rating.
Mary Jones, principal of Harris, attributed her school's increase in accreditation to the teachers.
Jones said she believes the school and her students have the necessary resources to improve the accreditation level. The school even has developed strategies to help students improve.
Harris strategies
Some of those strategies include visiting parents at home, increasing verbal and written communication with parents, helping teachers understand students' needs and updating school software and computers.
Jones said she believes focusing on reading is the key to raising student test scores because reading is basic to learning.
But Jones believes there is much work yet to be done.
At Parkview, Principal Kathy Robinson said she would like to see her school improve. Although the minimum goal is Level 3, she said, "we would like to be a Level 5. But we are being realistic."
Robinson said she and her staff also have devised several strategies they believe will help them achieve their goals.
Parkview plans
Parkview strategies include a tutoring program for students who scored in the "minimal" category on the Mississippi Curriculum Test, a statewide standardized test that gauges reading, language and math skills.
Other plans call for parental verification that their child has read 20 minutes each night and one-on-one tutorials for students who need extra help.
Robinson said the weakest area for her students is language. She also said students understand the importance of standardized test scores and accreditation levels.
Parkview will improve all student achievement.
The Parkview staff will implement and refine the Success for All reading program.
To implement the components of the Reading First program to improve student achievement in reading.
Parkview will involve parents in the overall educational process of their child.
To increase student achievement on the Mississippi Curriculum Test.
To increase parental involvement.
To obtain a 98% student and teacher attendance.
To improve technology.