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Ironton board discusses plans for summer intervention program

The Ironton Board of Education laid down summer intervention plans at last night’s board meeting.

This year, summer intervention will include students who did not meet the Fourth Grade Guarantee requirements.

"In the past, it (summer intervention) has been just for students who have difficulty in passing or struggling," said Stephen Kingery, superintendent of Ironton City Schools.

Board Policy 5124, which pertains to the guarantee, states that students who score below the basic level in the October 2001 administration of the Fourth Grade Reading Proficiency Test (score of 198)

will be offered an intensive intervention program in which students will receive help in improving their reading skills. Students who have not scored at or above the basic level on the test are retained in the fourth grade.

However, students who have participated in these programs will be considered for promotion.

Bill Dressel, principal of Ironton Middle School and administrative assistant for Ironton City Schools, said after summer intervention, the students will retake the proficiency test. But, the test score will not be the sole determining factor as to whether or not the student is promoted.

Students’ performances during the school year, recommendations from teachers and those working with them during the intervention, and their performances during the intervention, will be factors taken into consideration.

Summer intervention will be offered at Ironton Middle School; West Ironton, Whitwell, and Kingsbury Elementaries; and Ironton High School. During the meeting, board member Teresa Parker asked if it were feasible to put the students into one building for the interventions.

Kingery responded by saying the younger students may not be comfortable in the middle school, and students will probably do better in their home schools.

The intervention will be provided at no charge to the parents, and bus transportation will be provided, Dressel said. However, students scoring below the basic level must complete 60 hours of summer intervention time. If students miss a session, their parents must pay for the time it takes for them to complete 60 hours.

Proficiency, or having a score of 217-249 on the test, was once required by the state for promotion to the fifth grade. The basic level was later established in the October 2001 school year.

Nevertheless, Dressel said Ironton’s objective is for all students to be proficient.

"The state has lowered its standards, but we’re not lowering ours." Amelia A. Pridemore/The Ironton Tribune