Thunder Bay Junior High Principal proposes new structure

News Photo by Temi Fadayomi The Alpena Public School Board of Education discuss the new proposal for the Special Education Mathematics Resource Room during their Monthly Workshop Meeting at the Gerry Ludwig Board Room at 2373 Gordon Rd. on Monday.

ALPENA — A new Structure for the Special Education Mathematics Resource Room may be coming to Thunder Bay Junior High School as a new proposal is discussed by the Alpena Public Schools Board of Education during their monthly workshop meeting on Monday.

The proposal for the new structure was presented to the board by Thunder Bay Junior High School Principal Katie Lee.

The new proposal would modify the current Special Education Mathematics Resource Room structure from having resource rooms based on grade level to having resource rooms based on ability level.

“Our current structure for resource room classes is grade level six, seven, and eight,” Lee said to the board. “This is proposing to revamp what we’re doing and do it by student achievement.”

If the proposal is accepted by the board, then resource rooms sixth, seventh, and eighth will instead become resource rooms Math 1-4.

According to Lee, this change in structure will allow teachers to individualize instruction, target skill deficits more intentionally, and reduce frustration for students, with the ultimate goal of more academic progress and growth.

“The goal is to always help them meet their goal to get them in the least restrictive environment,” said Lee.

According to Lee, if this proposal is accepted, then students in grades five through seven with individual education programs that involve math-related instructional goals, will participate in math-related screenings/assessments in the spring of each year.

From there Thunder Bay Junior High School special education resource room math teachers, a secondary math coach, and administration will analyze the data and begin to build instructional groupings.

A similar structural change was implemented in regard to Special Education English Language Arts courses, and according to Lee, this change has seen improvement in student academic performance.

“We’ve seen great success in our students,” said Lee. “They’re meeting their goals and exceeding their goals, and they’re able to move out of those resource room courses and into our co-taught general education courses.”

The proposal will be voted on by the board at their next board meeting on Feb. 26.


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