Iredell-Statesville Schools concluded its annual Curriculum Review Week June 21 at Statesville High School. Master teachers from around the district participated in curriculum development and assessments throughout the week. Teachers helped plan how the district will transition from the standard course of study to North Carolina's new common core curriculum.
"Curriculum Review Week really helps set the stage for what goes on next school year. Teachers who participated were recommended by their principal to come and collaborate with other master teachers, along with the instructional facilitators, instructional technology coordinators, exceptional children specialists, and ESL representatives," said Dr. Melanie Taylor, associate superintendent of curriculum and instruction. "Teachers have been able to diligently work on revamping and revising curriculum guides and benchmark assessments to align to the new standards, while also brainstorming great ideas, and creating friendships and connections with other colleagues."
Planning for this year's Curriculum Review Week began in early November.
"This year, we are continuing our focus on the common core curriculum and essential standards as we move to full implementation of this curriculum by the state for the 2012-2013 school year," said Taylor.
Alison Kiser, director of curriculum support for secondary schools, believes the hard work from this week will serve as a form of support for all teachers.
"As we are implementing new standards we want to make sure we have these support documents to help teachers and to make sure we are accurately aligning our assessments of the new standards," Kiser explained.
"Having teachers from each school really creates a sense of ownership within the district," added Kim Rector, director of curriculum support for elementary schools. "These teachers are the experts at their particular grade or subject. It is better to allow them to develop assessments and curriculum guides with direction, guidance, and most importantly support from the state and the district."
Melissa Withers, instructional facilitator at Sharon Elementary and Central Elementary thinks participation in Curriculum Review Week is significant.
"Curriculum Review Week is significant because it keeps all schools throughout the district aligned and the easiest way to represent the district as a whole," stated Withers. "It's great to see the collaboration across the district and be able to come together and share what other schools are doing."
According to Taylor, the information from this week will be posted on wikis, the district website, and shared through a variety of videos collected during Curriculum Review Week. The most important way other teachers benefit from Curriculum Review Week is from the information attendees will take back to their schools and share during professional development early release days. The materials will be reviewed during professional learning communities and other collaborative teams.
After the successful completion of Curriculum Review Week the district is ready to roll-out the new curriculum.
"These guys have done such an awesome job this week. I absolutely think we are ready for this new curriculum," Dr. Taylor concluded.