Board of Student Achievement Committee Minutes September 8, 2021

District Mission: The Sioux City Community School District exists to educate students to believe in their talents and skills, achieve academic excellence, and succeed in reaching their potential.

Facilitator: Dr. Kim Buryanek

The Board Student Achievement Committee (SAC) met on Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at noon in the Educational Service Center Board Room.

Committee Members Present: Dr. Paul Gausman, Dr. Kim Buryanek, Mr. Ron Colling and Dr. Juli

Guests Present: Angela Bemus, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment; Dr. Dora
Jung, Director of Student Services and Equity Education; Kim Neal, Director of Learning Supports;
Jim Vanderloo, Director of Secondary Education; and Dr. Brian Burnight, Director of Elementary

Preliminary Iowa Assessment Results

Mrs. Angela Bemus, Dr. Dora Jung, Dr. Brian Burnight and Jim Vanderloo presented the preliminary Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Progress (ISASP) results. ISASP measures proficiency in English Language Arts (ELA) and math in grades 3-11, and science in grades 5, 8 and 10. Typically, students are tested annually in the spring, but because of the pandemic year, there was a pause in testing for the 2019-20 school year.

Mrs. Bemus explained the different components the state measures when determining a school’s designation status based on ISASP data. Each component is weighted and the weight varies between the components and grade levels.. Growth in reading and math has the highest weight in all grade levels. After ISASP data is collected, schools are designated in one of the following categories: exceptional, high performing, commendable, acceptable, needs improvement, or priority. The most recent data available from the state shows the District had 17 of 18 schools designated as high performing, commendable or acceptable. One school was designated ‘priority’ due to not meeting the state required level of participation of 95%. The District has addressed the participation deficit with the building.

Mrs. Bemus provided a breakdown of data by grade and subgroups for ELA, math and science. A review of the data shows the pause in learning during the pandemic affected students in transition years. Students transitioning from elementary to middle school, and middle school to high school were less proficient in ELA and Math. Additionally, students transitioning from second to third grade were less proficient in ELA. Mrs. Bemus shared the District has placed an emphasis on curriculum and pacing guide design in math, ELA and science.

Dr. Dora Jung and Kim Neal shared analysis of demographic data related to ISASP scores. Students may fall into more than one subgroup. When analyzing all subgroups, the achievement gaps in math and reading proficiency correlates strongly with a low socioeconomic status. The District believes providing interventions that are effective for the free and reduced subgroup of students will be effective with the other subgroups where gaps in proficiency levels exist.

The committee acknowledged the Preliminary Iowa Assessment Results presentation. This will be presented at the next School Board Meeting.

ESSER III and Evidence Based Interventions

Dr. Kim Buryanek shared the Iowa Department of Education Guidance for ESSER III and Evidence Based Interventions. The guidance specifies that a district must allocate at least 20% of the ESSER III funds to address learning loss. The District is in the process of determining how to use the funds and will also decide if the allocation should be increased.

There are four tiers of evidence-based learning and interventions. As it states in the guidance, a Tier 1 intervention has the strongest evidence base, then Tier 2, Tier 3 and Tier 4. The District will work to provide interventions within and explore supports through other agencies as needed. Schools have been analyzing their own data and working on plans to address the achievement gaps. Teachers also participated in professional development opportunities this summer specific to addressing learning loss.

The ESSER III and Evidence-Based Guidance will be presented at the next School Board Meeting.

Strategic Plan Update

This agenda item is tabled until the next SAC meeting.