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November 4, 2004

Reading program not worth cost; Rainwater pledges that it will continue

This week's Isthmus includes a damning internal assessment of Reading Recovery, "a remedial first-grade reading program considered a cornerstone of Madison's school iteracy efforts."

"The district would be 'well-served to investigate other methods' to reach struggling reaaders, says the report."

One of those other methods will be presented Sunday, at 1:00 p.m., at the Madison Community Center.

You can link to the Isthmus article.

The notice of Sunday's meeting follows.

Could Madison Use Milwaukee�s Successful Reading Programs?

Norm and Dolores Mishelow
1:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 7
Madison Senior Center
330 W. Mifflin

Principal Norm Mishelow will discuss how academic achievement excels at Barton, because the school teaches reading using Direct Instruction (DI), a program that provides a detailed script for teacher-student interaction. The program focuses on small group learning and emphasizes phonics. The school also uses a math curriculum that focuses generally on building basic arithmetic skills.

Norm�s wife Dolores is a former principal of 27th Street School which was a failing school before she took over. She started DI, and their test scores soared. She used to believe in all the whole language and warm fuzzy teaching until, of course, she saw the light with DI. Norm was not using DI until Dolores nudged him to try it (after she retired) and his scores, though decent without DI, hit the stratosphere once DI got humming.

The same curriculum in MMSD elementary schools could help close the achievement gap, cut instructional costs, reduce special ed referrals, and raise achievement overall.

You can read more by connecting to Barton School.

Sponsored by and Active Citizens for Education (ACE).

Posted by Ed Blume at November 4, 2004 4:11 PM
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