ERIC Number: ED479407
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003
Reference Count: N/A
A Parent's Guide to Achievement Matters Most: Maryland's Plan for PreK-12 Education, 2002-2003.
Maryland State Dept. of Education, Baltimore.
To raise the achievement of every student in the state, Maryland implemented "Achievement Matters Most," a new plan for public elementary and secondary schools that sets goals in the areas of achievement, teaching, testing, safety, and family involvement in schools. This guide for parents outlines the goals and characteristics of the initiative, and how progress will be assessed. The guide first highlights five simple but challenging goals for Maryland public education: (1) achievement will improve for each student; (2) curriculum, instruction, and testing will be better aligned and understandable; (3) all educators will have the skills to improve student achievement; (4) all schools will be safe, drug-free, and conducive to learning; and (5) parents and legal guardians will be involved in education. Next, the guide outlines several ways the state encourages high expectations and helps schools to improve, including a new voluntary, state curriculum; grades given to schools based on how well they teach; school improvement teams for each school; financial rewards and public recognition for schools making strong improvements; and a state family involvement policy. The state-wide curriculum is then detailed, including how it will differ from the Maryland Content Standards. Next, the state's two testing programs are highlighted, one for elementary and one for high school; sample questions from both tests are included, as is information on assessment of students with special needs and/or limited English proficiency. In the area of the state's family involvement policy, the guide outlines signs that families and educators are communicating and working together in a particular school: schools and families communicate regularly; parents play a role in helping students learn; parents are welcome in the school, and their help is appreciated; and parents are included in making decisions that affect their children. Finally, the guide offers suggestions for parents to encourage their child's achievement, such as setting high expectations, talking with the child's teacher(s) regularly, dedicating 15 minutes daily to talking with the child, helping with homework, and meeting with high school counselors to talk about post-high school opportunities. (HTH)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Change Strategies, Educational Change, Educational Improvement, Educational Objectives, Elementary School Curriculum, Elementary Secondary Education, Parent Participation, Secondary School Curriculum, State Standards, Student Improvement
Maryland State Department of Education, 200 West Baltimore Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-2595. Tel: 888-246-0016 (Toll Free); Tel: 888-246-0016 (Toll Free); Tel: 410-767-0600; Fax: 410-333-2275; Web site: http://www.msde.state.md.us.
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Maryland State Dept. of Education, Baltimore.
Identifiers - Location: Maryland