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October 07, 2004 Extra Credit
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October 7, 2004

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Pennsylvania School District Receives Grant To "Tutor Its Teachers"

No Child Left Behind’s Comprehensive School Reform (CSR) grant program is designed to increase student achievement by assisting public schools across the country with implementing comprehensive reforms that are grounded in scientifically based research and effective practices. The following are excerpts from a recent article in the Allentown Morning Call (PA) highlighting how the Panther Valley School District will use their CSR grant to improve student achievement:

"Panther Valley School District is going to tutor its teachers. The school district has obtained a three-year grant › $70,000 a year starting this year › from the federal Comprehensive School Reform program to establish a ‘teacher coach’ to work with middle school teachers individually and in small groups on how to improve student performance. The coach will be chosen from among the middle school faculty, Superintendent Robert Mauro said.

"About $50,000 of each year’s grant will be spent on the replacement teacher for the teacher coach, including salary and benefits, Mauro said. ‘This will allow the coach to have the freedom to be scheduled into other staff members’ classes, as well as plan, observe and critique lessons of others,’’ he said.

"Another $10,000 will go to staff development for the coach and Compass Learning-related costs. The computerized Compass Learning program allows students in third through eighth grades to focus on reading/language arts/mathematics topics they find difficult. Teachers are able to view students’ progress. A final $10,000 will ‘support standardized testing within the building,’ Mauro said."

"The money will make a difference, Mauro said. ‘We have the potential through the grant to shift emphasis from the teacher to the learner,’ he said. ‘Not many people will argue against involving students more deeply in their learning. It’s the best kind, as compared to teachers talking excessively and students taking a passive role. The staff is presently organizing lessons that require students to think, to write, to do and to discuss.’"

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NCLB Extra Credit is a regular look at the No Child Left Behind Act, President Bush's landmark education reform initiative passed with bipartisan support in Congress.

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Last Modified: 04/03/2008