Second semester is winding down as May approaches and state testing begins. Algebra I students took the EOC on April 23 or 24. Following that the remainder of our students began taking MAP tests: seventh grade in ELA and math; and eighth grade in ELA, math, and science. To accommodate the length of MAP tests and to minimize interruptions, the middle school switched to a block schedule from April 25 through May 1.
Students have taken three installments of the Illuminate benchmark test in ELA and math have already been utilizing the DnA achievement test for content standards; in May they will add another treatment of FASTbridge, the skill component. The tests can give teachers and students formative feedback about student growth during the school year. The staff chose to focus specifically on making inferences using text and word problems with measurement. Each class featured a lesson on one skill or the other to help students improve.
TSA students just returned from Rolla where they held their annual contest at the University of Missouri S&T. Several students placed in the competition, including one first. Student Council used multiple avenues to fundraiser for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and were able to write the check to the charity for $1682.14! This exceeded the goal they had set of $1500. This showed tremendous generosity by our student body and diligence by our officers.
During Spring Break the middle school’s gym floor was removed to prepare for replacement. The process is scheduled to completed in early to mid May. It inconveniences PE classes but they are using the turf field and weightroom during the construction. The spring dance had to be moved to the PHHS Commons while the gym floor is being sanded and stained. Middle schoolers got a preview of a future dance site on April 27. PHMS Track & Field have had a successful season thus far and will finish up on May 3 in Warrensburg.
We will continue to work with our students to focus on academics even though the end of the school year is filled with activities. Our final day of school is Wednesday, May 23. Much has to happen between now and then. Before that time we will have eighth graders visit the high school, have sixth graders visit the middle school, and have our end-of-the-year tailgate party. The middle school plans to end the school year with learning and transitions that will lead to productive starts next August.