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Board hears report on plan to improve Middle School

Months after a state education report listed Cleveland Hill Middle as a school in need of improvement, the district's Board of Education heard a report about how administrators plan to turn the school around.

Mary Pauly, the district's assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, called for all students, including those with disabilities, to achieve an 80 percent or better average on English language arts, math and other content area assessments by next year.

Cleveland Hill plans to schedule quarterly interim assessments to help prepare students for the state exams.

"We agree it's a lofty goal," Pauly said Wednesday. "If we set that goal lower, we have lowered expectations."

In order to promote progress, the district formed a special committee to look at improving scores for sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders.

Some of the committee's goals include training teachers in high-impact instructional strategies, writing daily lesson plans and using co-teachers to engage in specially designated instruction for students with special needs.

Pauly said teachers will score student assessments together, examine the results, evaluate student progress and adjust classroom instruction accordingly.

Cleveland Hill Middle was one of 44 area schools cited by the state as in need of improvement. The state cites a school or district if it doesn't make annual improvements in a particular area for two years. If the school continues to fall behind, the state may place it on a list of persistently lowest-achieving schools.