DEMOGRAPHICS YEAR SCHOOL OPENED 1955 ATTENDANCE RATE (%) 95.0 student Enrollment 382 Race/Ethnicity (%) African American....................... 5.7 Hawaii/Pac. Islander.......................... - White.............................. 80.1 Multiracial...................... 5.7 Hispanic......................... 7.0 American Indian/AK....................... - Asian.............................. - GENDER (%) Male................................ 50.1 Female........................... 49.7 Special Services** (%) FARMS........................... 15.6 504.................................. 5.1 Special Ed..................... 10.8 LEP................................. - Title 1............................. No
Pasadena Elementary School
Key Challenges to Student Success
The students who attend Pasadena Elementary School are influenced daily by events, situations, and circumstances that occur at home and in their neighborhood. While there are numerous factors that contribute to student achievement at Pasadena Elementary, the school leadership team has narrowed its focus to the following challenges to student success, with the acknowledgement that this is not an all-inclusive list and that some students may be affected by other opportunities or issues in their young lives.
This school's key challenges to student success are also noted in the boxes shown below.
Traditional MSDE and/or school-based student challenges
- Quarterly Assessment Scores - English
- Quarterly Assessment Scores - Mathematics
- PARCC Scores - Mathematics (Elementary grades 3, 4, 5)
- PARCC Scores - English/Language Arts (Elementary grades 3, 4, 5)
- Academic Achievement for Literacy - students read at or above grade level as measured by Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment
Key Challenge #2: Assessments: English/Language Arts
On state, district, and classroom assessments for English Language Arts, approximately 60% of students in grades 3-5 met expectations for Reading Literature; approximately 55% of students in grades 3-5 met expectations for Reading Informational Text; and approximately 60%of students in grades 3-5 met expectations for Reading Vocabulary. There was a discrepancy in performance on these assessments for the following student groups: Special Education, LEP, FARMs. PARCC and district quarterly assessments in the area of reading continue to call for a need to focus on literature and informational text so that students can closely read and comprehend the text. Students in grades 2-5 struggle to answer the Part B portion of questions correctly, which requires students to go back into the text and locate text evidence. Improving student reading levels and building perseverance and stamina should address this issue.
Striving to meet or exceed standards with rigorous instruction, we provide remediation and assistance to struggling learners. Through targeted interventions, specialized instruction, co-teaching, and pull-out support, staff tailor instruction to meet student needs. In addition, AACPS curriculum redesign, professional development, and resources for the English Language Arts block for guided reading, explicit comprehension, and interactive read aloud instruction have been of great benefit in our efforts to increase the number of students reading on- or above-grade level. Continued progress monitoring throughout the school year has helped our teachers track our student data more closely and to program for their instructional needs. To support comprehension, staff utilize Anchor Charts, Related Tasks, Explicit Academic Vocabulary Instruction, Guided Reading Conferencing tailored to individual student needs; as well as Interactive Read Aloud & Explicit Comprehension Lessons, and Active Engagement/Total Participation Technique strategies. Explicit comprehension lessons in grades 3-5 have also helped to build comprehension skills and improve assessment outcomes. Students also need continued support in test taking strategies to eliminate tricky answer choices and focus on the best answer [Indicator 5, 6].
Key Challenge #3: Assessments: Mathematics
On state, district, and classroom assessments for Mathematics, approximately 50% of students in grades 3-5 met expectations for Reasoning and Modeling. There was also a discrepancy in performance on these assessments for the following student groups: Special Education, Limited English Proficiency (LEP), and FARMs.
In order to address this challenge, teachers embed Common Core Curriculum Standards with Standards of Mathematical Practices using the Concrete Representational Abstract (CRA) Model to enable students to demonstrate higher levels of thinking for major, supporting, and additional content standards. Class routines include Number Sense routines, Talk Moves, and Pose a Problem to provide hands on, real world and inquiry-based learning daily.
Continued progress monitoring and flexible grouping has been of great benefit in our efforts to increase the number of students persevering, justifying their answers, and thinking more critically. As evident in school data, students continue to struggle with reasoning and modeling with mathematics. To support modeling and reasoning, staff utilize flexible grouping for reteaching and access to manipulative and mathematical tools tailored to support individual student needs. Improving fluency, utilization of manipulatives to model, and building perseverance and stamina should address this deficit. Support from the math resource teacher has helped to align and improve assessment outcomes. Recognizing students’ needs, teachers continue support in online test taking strategies to use the navigation buttons for answer choices and to focus on the best answer [Indicator 5, 6].
Non-Traditional Socio-Economic Challenges
- Socio-Economic Issues (employment, income levels, housing costs)
Key Challenge #1 Increase cohesiveness within the school community
In recent years, stakeholders have reported that the greater Pasadena community has lacked cohesiveness and unity. As a result, Pasadena Elementary has intentionally incorporated school actions to demonstrate that staff, students, and families are valuable members within the educational community in an effort to promote unity, inclusion, acceptance, and cultural awareness (Indicator 1).Through EEE Global Studies, students further connect with one another as they participate in inquiry-based learning to research big concepts across disciplines including literacy, ecology, economics, technology, government, equality, and culture.This interdisciplinary perspective connects students to the world around them, encourages their natural curiosity, helps them develop essential thinking and learning skills, and guides them to become stewards of the environment and responsible global citizens.
Economic challenges and changing times have impacted this community. The number of students who qualify for Free and Reduced Meals (FARMs) has increased through the years. Stay at home parents have returned to the workforce, and there has been a reduction in the number of regular volunteers. Enrollment has remained relatively steady through the years.
Pasadena Elementary identified key strategies to encourage and challenge all students to develop their full potential academically, emotionally, physically, socially and culturally. Our school structures have been established to support the 2018-2023 AACPS Strategic Plan, and are essential to achieving the goals identified in All Means All (Value One). Nurturing relationships and academic achievement interconnect and are evident in the average percentage of students attending school on a daily basis. Pasadena Elementary is in year two of building teacher capacity to implement a school-wide positive behavior intervention system (PBIS) to create a positive, safe, engaging and orderly learning environment in order to focus on the social and emotional well-being of students and staff. Developing and strengthening our relationships, stakeholders work collaboratively to provide a safe, nurturing environment for learning. To see our school values in action, students demonstrate they CARE (Care, Achieve, Respect, Engage) as they participate in “Look for the Good” activities, spread messages that Kindness Counts and “You Matter,” and come together to show solidarity during monthly spirit days and by helping others through Service Learning opportunities.
Pasadena Elementary intentionally schedules parental involvement events to incorporate cohesiveness into the school community while also supporting a culture of literacy and cultural responsiveness: STEAM Night, Literacy Night, and International Fair events are well attended. Additionally, parents are invited to participate in “learning walks” for Reading and Mathematics, and grandfriends are invited to attend Cultural Arts classes to compare education expectations between the generations. In collaboration with PTA, students are invited to Cultural Arts assemblies annually. These assemblies vary from year to year, but introduce students to Arts and Humanities through interactive and performance based activities. In recent years, students have participated in Artist in Residency programs for dancing with their parents (Ballroom and Barn dancing) as well as partnerships with Ballet Theater of Maryland.
HISTORICAL SCHOOL & COMMUNITY CHALLENGES THAT HAVE INFLUENCED THE WRITING OF THIS SCHOOL'S STORY
- Socio-economic community issues (employment, income levels, housing costs)
- Significant changes over time in student/community demographics
- Access (or lack of access) to community academic support programs
- Significant increase/reduction in student enrollment numbers