HUNTINGTON COUNTY, Ind., and IOWA CITY, Iowa – May 5, 2009 – For years, Huntington County Community School Corporation, a rural Indiana school district, has worked hard to meet the educational needs of its diverse student body. Key to paving the path to academic success has been an emphasis on managing and analyzing data. Today, district leaders are focused on working “smarter, not harder,” using data to take student achievement to the next level.
Last year, this district of more than 6,000 students at 11 schools adopted Pearson Inform™ – a powerful data analysis and decision support tool for K-12 districts. In the past, teachers and administrators at Huntington County Community School Corporation collected plenty of student data, but finding what they needed often resembled finding the proverbial needle in a haystack. “We had data stored all over the place, and people had difficulty searching because they didn’t have a whole lot of time,” said Chuck Grable, the district’s assistant superintendent for instruction.
Now all relevant data can be made available on educators’ desktops. Pearson Inform provides district educators with a complete, continuous picture of student performance – reporting and analyzing the results from all of the district’s important assessments, including high-stakes state tests, national norm-referenced tests, early literacy assessments and non-proprietary formative assessments.
Today, Pearson launched the newest update to Pearson Inform, 5.0, with enhanced support for linking assessment to instruction and a new Response to Intervention (RtI) connection. A national leader in linking student data to improved instruction, Huntington County Community School Corporation participated in a pilot of Pearson Inform 5.0, which has further transformed the way its teachers and administrators analyze data to develop targeted instructional strategies.
“Pearson Inform 5.0 is very user-friendly, and we are pleased – absolutely,” said Grable. “It’s helping us to put all of our key formative data at our teachers’ and administrators’ fingertips, which will help us to drive instruction. We’re excited about how Inform is helping us to see where we are and where we need to go.”
A sampling of the new features offered in Pearson Inform 5.0 includes the following:
The tool is now dashboard-based, providing users with visually engaging, informative displays of data.
It is a rich Internet application based on Web 2.0 technologies, which uses a Flash multimedia platform to provide educators with state-of-the-art tools that intuitively interact with data for analysis in a visual way, helping inform their decision-making for instruction and resource allocation.
Users can now drill down directly from assessment results data to contextually relevant instructional resources. When viewing data on a particular student or group of students, the teacher or administrator can click on the “drill pointer” and go directly to online instructional content that will help put students back on track.
It provides extensive support for management of targeted assistance programs and intervention activities required for Response to Intervention (RtI).
For Grable, one of most exciting new capabilities is the connection to RtI. With Inform 5.0, Grable is now able to store and manage documentation related to his district’s RtI program. This new framework, which schools across the country are adopting to support school improvement programs, is mandated by the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act and relies heavily on the use of student data. “Pearson Inform 5.0 gives us a valuable tool to support our RtI implementation. We can see all the information we need on each student, all in one place,” he said.
“Throughout the country, districts such as Huntington County Community School Corporation are realizing the amazing ways that data can be used to improve student achievement when educators have the right tools for managing, analyzing and linking it to instruction,” said Douglas Kubach, president and CEO, Assessment and Information Group of Pearson. “We developed Pearson Inform 5.0 to give school districts a complete, continuous picture of student performance with data from all important state district and classroom assessments so they can use these indicators to ensure all students are on the path to meeting and exceeding standards.”
Pearson Inform 5.0 also features enhanced capabilities for analysis of individual test item results. For example, when teachers see that a number of students missed a particular question on an assessment, they can click to view the test item, as well as to find the standard that is supported by that test item.
Educators will also find an enhanced report library in Pearson Inform 5.0, which enables them a look at every conceivable slice of the student population. The new student composite view gives users an easy way to look at student assessment profiles, student academic improvement plans and course grades.
More information about Pearson Inform 5.0 is available at http://www.formativeassessments.com/inform/index.htm.
About Huntington County Community School Corporation:
Huntington County Community School Corporation (HCCSC) is made up of seven K-5 elementary schools, one K-8 school, two middle schools and one high school. Serving all of Huntington County, Indiana, HCCSC includes the communities of Andrews, Bippus, Huntington, Majenica, Markle, Mt. Etna, Roanoke and Warren. The 6,034 students attending Huntington County Community Schools are afforded countless opportunities for academic, social and physical growth. Throughout the school community, teachers and staff work to ensure such growth by enabling each student to find success in the classroom.
Pearson (NYSE:PSO), the global leader in education and education technology, provides innovative print and digital education materials for preK through college, student information systems and learning management systems, teacher professional development, career certification programs, and testing and assessment products that set the standard for the industry. Pearson’s other primary businesses include the Financial Times Group and the Penguin Group. For more information about the assessment group of Pearson, visit http://www.pearsonassess.com.
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