Ledge Street School
Title I Schoolwide Plan
Comprehensive Needs Assessment
A comprehensive needs assessment was conducted in May of 2004. This
assessment has been, and will continue to be, reviewed and revised periodically.
evisions may indicate the need for additional staff, instructional materials, additional
based program components, and/or staff training. In addition, the needs
assessment reflects the requirements of all students, including migratory and homeles
pupils as they enroll. In conjunction with our school site assessments, the Nashua School
District continues its committee work of aligning curricula with State and National
standards. With the combination of the District’s curriculum work and our scho
work, we are identifying students’ needs and the teaching strategies that will best address
areas of concern.
To further realize our children’s needs beyond the May assessment, we tested all
of our students in K
Grade 5 this past September (2004).
Using the assessment
components from the Scott Foresman Program, we identified those individuals needing
early intervention support.
In 1997, we formed Literacy Team support groups serving 30
40 students per
grade level that needed additional assistan
ce. We continue to serve approximately 30
students per grade level in K
Grade 5 using research
The Ledge Street School has a School Improvement Plan which drives our long
range and strategic planning and restructuring. The 10 sub
ees of this plan work
to formulate strategies to improve instructional delivery of curricula in each of the major
content areas as well as improving parent communication for sub
groups not making
Schoolwide Reform Strategies
based reading programs currently being used at the Ledge Street School
include the following:
Scott Foresman Reading Series and the Intervention Components listed below:
Ledge Street School
Early Reading Intervention
In addition, the Lindamood
Bell Program is being implemented by our special
educators as needed. All of our research
based programs include the components of
phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary, and ar
to improve student achievement.
Program emphasis is placed on a balanced approach to include the components.
Maintaining “on task” behavior, providing opportunities for hands
on practice, and
working towards high levels of mastery are import
One additional resource we have provided for our students is the relationship we
have developed with Rivier College to provide tutors through the America Reads
A “Reading Buddies” Program was also begun 5 years ago and will be
to include more students, volunteers, parent readers, and classrooms which team up to
extend one on one opportunities for reading in the primary grades.
We assess the Learning Styles of our pupils in Grade 4 in an effort to provide
ve individualized instruction. This information can be used by the 5
teachers in the following year, allowing them the opportunity to begin the next school
year with a better understanding of their students’ best learning mode.
We have recogniz
ed the need for all of our children to have a positive sense of
themselves, their peers, their school, their community, and their family. The emotional
condition of our students impacts their ability to concentrate and learn. Support for all of
s is provided through our active Character Education Program. Children need to
know they are in a comfortable, safe, and friendly environment. We believe that a
comprehensive Discipline Program and a strong Character Education Program greatly
he growth and achievement of our children.
Instruction by Highly Qualified Staff
Building administrators review applications/resumes and choose to interview only
those teachers that are NH certified with the certification being in the ar
ea of the teaching
assignment. Professional development activities of the candidate will be reviewed.
References and letters of recommendation will be confirmed. Staff development will be
Ledge Street School
provided to maintain a highly qualified
staff. Applications for paraprofessional staff will
be carefully reviewed. Only those candidates with two years of post
or an associate’s degree will be hired.
All direct instruction is done by certified educators. Trained parapro
under the supervision of a certified educator work with small groups to reinforce
concepts and provide practice opportunities.
Paraprofessionals who do not currently meet the guidelines of being highly
qualified are taking part in training pro
vided on site by the State. All paraprofessionals in
our programs will be highly qualified at the end of the 2005
2006 school year.
We have designed our Grade Level Literacy Teams to include certified teachers wit
paraprofessionals who meet/will soon meet the NCLB standards. Training for all staff
members continues during the school year and summer through related in
programs provided by the District. We have a very active and excellent staff
program in the District. Each month, workshops are offered for the
professional staff on a variety of subjects, and training is provided for paraprofessionals
on early release days.
Dr. Ellen Rintel, an Associate Professor of Education at Salem State Co
Salem, Massachusetts, has been contracted to provide 7 days of staff training on site
during the 2004
05 school year. Dr. Rintel is the coordinator of the College’s Master’s
Programs in Bilingual Education and Teaching ESL, and she has made many
presentations at local and national ESL and bilingual education conferences. Title I has
generously provided funding for this.
In addition, we are very appreciative that Title I will be sponsoring a 2
workshop in August of 2005 for the Ledge Street S
chool staff based on the book
A FRAMEWORK FOR UNDERSTANDING POVERTY by Ruby K. Payne, Ph.D., and
presented by Dr. Sue Nelledehart. In preparation for this workshop, our Reading
Specialist is conducting a book study group which meets regularly for the sta
who plan to participate. Their meetings have generated a great deal of reflection and
discussion around the building.
Our bilingual Home
School Coordinator attends the meetings of the book study
group and provides essential information to pa
rticipants about the culture of our pupils
and their families.
Ledge Street School
Title I assistance will continue to provide the opportunity for faculty members to
attend local, regional, and national conferences. At the building level over the past
years, we have provided, and will continue to provide, again with the support of Title I,
service training for both teachers and paraprofessionals to insure highly qualified staff.
Both teachers and paraprofessionals will earn staff development ho
urs according to the
District’s professional development master plan.
Communication is an essential component of our program. The Title I Project
Manager and the Title I Teacher Facilitator for the Nashua School District, our Reading
Specialist, and our
Assistant Principal meet regularly to review the status of the program,
exchange ideas, and plan ways to improve instruction. In September of each year, the
Title I Project Manager, the Title I Teacher Facilitator, and a building administrator meet
ll of our grade level teams as needed to answer any questions regarding the
implementation of the program for the upcoming year. We have received a great deal of
positive feedback from the faculty regarding the availability of, and accessibility to, both
of our District level Title I consultants. Their visibility in our building is noticed, and is
appreciated, by all.
Parent policies and learning compacts are distributed to all families. A parent
s involved in the revision, planning, and evaluation of the Schoolwide
Plan. We have been very pro
active in providing programs to bring our families into our
school. Each year, we hold a PTO
sponsored family pizza night in conjunction with a
an ice cream social, a multi
cultural fair, musical programs (choral and band
performances), a beautification project in the spring, etc.
Our school/community recycling/beautification project has been so successful that
the New Hampshire Partners in Educ
ation in May of 2001 awarded it a Youth
Community Service Award.
During this past school year, we have utilized the services of our Home
Coordinator to the fullest extent to assist with attendance, discipline, etc. She has formed
a parent group i
n our community, and she meets with the group once a month. We
greatly value the connection between our school and this group.
During our Open House in the fall of 2004, we featured a literacy display area in
Ledge Street School
ur Discipline Program includes a component to actively monitor student
attendance. We work closely with the parents of our students to improve attendance,
punctuality, and pupil behavior.
We publish a monthly newsletter which includes a summary of the
events and a preview of upcoming plans. Information on our after school programs is
We have ongoing discussions about other ways to involve parents (classroom
project helpers, adult literacy classes, etc.) and it is an area in
which we will continue to
work very diligently. In addition, there is a continuing need for parent volunteers in the
area of computer training and usage. Parent volunteers with computer expertise can train
students to use technology to improve their rea
ding and writing skills, and to help with
A crucial foundation for future reading development starts early on. Children
who are read to early and often have greater academic curiosity, development of rhymes,
and sense of language an
We have purchased collections of “books in a bag” for every classroom in
Kindergarten, Grade 1, and Grade 2. Children are able to borrow these materials, and
either read the books or listen to the books being read to them. Many of the books
with games and activities that are related to the reading and which may be done at home.
Five of the sub
committees of our School Improvement Plan, previously
mentioned, were formed in order to plan various ways in which to involve parents in the
chool community. Our well
attended Family Fun and Reading Night and Ice Cream
Social were presented in conjunction with our PTO. This very actively involved group is
now working to improve our playground.
Finally, in the 2004
2005 school year, we experi
enced a 98% return rate on our
Title I Home
School Learning Compacts. It has become a common practice for us to
have such a high rate of return. The compacts are viewed by the staff as an essential link
to the home, and another tool to help insure studen
Students that attend Head Start and the Title I Nursery are effectively transitioned
into our Kindergarten program.
Ledge Street School
Head Start personnel meet with our Kindergarten teachers an
d have visited our
Kindergarten classrooms. The Title I Nursery teacher also visits our Kindergarten
teachers to ease the transition for Title I students.
Title I was instrumental in providing the funding that allowed us to move from a
½ day Kindergarten
program to full day programming. A specific Home
Learning Compact was developed for Kindergarten and is distributed to all Kindergarten
parents in the fall.
Our ESL teachers, Title I Home
School Coordinator, and the Building Principal
have met wi
th the two local Head Start parent groups of those students coming to the
Ledge Street School for Kindergarten next year.
In April of 2005, we restructured our Kindergarten orientation program to include
an Early Literacy Screening for entering students.
This screening was conducted in the
evening by Title I staff members.
In addition to the transition from Preschool to Kindergarten, it is our goal to
provide further emphasis on the move from Kindergarten to Grade 1. The students in our
full day Kinder
garten program greatly benefit from additional family literacy activities,
and the opportunities for the development of more socialization, communication, fine
motor, and pre
academic skills. Our Kindergarten Book in a Bag Program extends the
connection. Our thanks, once again, to Title I for this wonderful
The Ledge Street School currently benefits from the RIF (Reading is
Fundamental) Program which provides funding for free take
home books. Over the past
6 years, this program
has been very successful. Title I has generously supported our
efforts to distribute several books to each student in Kindergarten
Grade 5 each year at no
cost. Title I graciously supplements funds awarded through a proposal prepared by our
ialist. We plan to continue this program into the future as we feel the
benefits will be seen for a long time to come.
We intend to use Title I funds to provide us with monies to purchase other take
home literacy games and activities such as packs of alp
habet letters and magnetic boards.
These tools will support early phonemic awareness for our students who are transitioning
into Grade 1. We are grateful for this financial support.
At the Preschool and Kindergarten levels, regular and punctual student
and parental involvement are strongly encouraged. Our Home
School Coordinator does a
tremendous job of working with families in all of these areas.
Ledge Street School
It is our goal to establish habits for good student attendance an
d strong parental
involvement from the very start of each child’s education.
Measures to Include Teachers in the Decisions Regarding the Use of Academic
Our teachers are active participants in every step of the assessment proce
The administration and District Office share State Assessment scores with
teachers at early release training sessions and at teachers’ meetings. Individual teachers
are given analyses of scores to assess how their previous pupils performed. Committee
have been formed to review areas of strength and weakness, and to develop new ways to
promote students’ learning and achievement.
Teachers are invited to join assessment committees to share ideas for improving
assessment scores and increasing the stude
nts’ familiarization with the test
We will continue to include our teachers in the assessment processes as we
enhance the services provided by our Literacy Teams and evaluate our students’ progress.
Assessments assist us in planning stude
nt programs and guiding teachers in how
to best meet their pupils’ needs. Student learning is accelerated by this combination of
It is our hope that students will not only perform well on assessment tests, but we
also want to help them to maste
r the skills needed both in and out of school.
Success on assessment tests is not a one
year project, but a result of the students
being able to read, comprehend, analyze, and respond to appropriate expectations at
every grade level.
Through the School
Improvement Plan, we are looking into common consultation
time when classroom, special education, Title I, and ESL teachers can all meet to discuss
student progress. Teachers currently have grade level meetings where input regarding
assessments and resul
ts are taken into consideration. Teachers also express their
suggestions/concerns on an annual input form.
In addition, a sub
committee of the School Improvement Plan reviewed a number
of appropriate assessment tools which could be used to evaluate stude
nts in Kindergarten
Grade 5. The group met several times during the spring of 2005. Their work resulted
Ledge Street School
in the selection of the DRA as an assessment instrument that will be implemented
schoolwide next year.
uctional Support for Children Experiencing Difficulties Mastering the
In the fall, all students in K
Grade 5 take the Scott Foresman Placement Test.
Based on test results and teacher input, a team of building specialists and Title I staff
mbers determine the intervention that will best meet the needs of the child. The Scott
Foresman Unit 1 and Unit 5 Skills Tests are used to determine growth. On the basis of
test results, students who are most in need are placed in appropriate early and
ntermediate intervention programs.
Assessment is also immediate as migratory and homeless children enter the
school; as results warrant, these students are included in the appropriate compensatory
Our staff feels very encouraged about
the fact that any child who needs
help can receive it. We are a very diverse school. We are a school that practices full
inclusion. We are an ESL school. We are a school with high poverty and high
transience. Special education teachers, paraprofessio
nals, and literacy teachers all work
together to actively assist students to improve their skills. Literacy groups are flexible,
and pupils may move into more challenging groups as they achieve new levels of
Currently, literacy students meet
in small groups, both in and out of the
classroom, with the hope of improving not only the skills needed for assessments, but
also the skills needed to become more capable overall students. During small group time
(such as Literacy Classes) and large gro
up activities, we place a strong emphasis on
reading, thinking, comprehension, vocabulary, and formulating a written response.
Title I has generously provided us with appropriate materials for our neediest students,
enrichment materials for pupils who le
arn quickly, and funds for teachers to attend
workshops which emphasize instruction in these areas.
It is our goal to emphasize phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency,
comprehension, writing, vocabulary, and thinking skills at all levels.
School in Need of Improvement
Please see our School Improvement Plan
Thank you for the opportunity to present this narrative. We appreciate it.
Ledge Street School
ocal, and other federal programs that are included in the Schoolwide
Reading is Fundamental
School Improvement Plan
How we will make the Schoolwide Program Plan available to the enti
parents, and the public:
The Ledge Street Schoolwide Plan will be posted on the Nashua School District website
and will be available to parents, staff members, and the community.