Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Instruction: Yvonne Tsagalis

District 88 Curriculum and Instruction - School Improvement

District 88 has the goal of college and career readiness for all its students. To meet that goal, District 88 has multiple accountability structures in place to ensure we are maximizing the potential of all our students.

Each year, high school students in Illinois are required to participate in a series of state assessments to measure their performance in the areas of math, reading and science. One of those required assessments is the SAT. In Illinois, all grade 11 students must take the SAT to earn a high school diploma.

To prepare our current and future District 88 students for the SAT they will take in grade 11, we provide pre-SAT assessments (called the PSAT). After each student completes a PSAT or SAT assessment, he or she will receive a score report that outlines the student’s individual strengths and areas for improvement through an online portal with the College Board (creator of the PSAT and SAT assessments) and an overview of the student’s college and career readiness. Also through the College Board account, students will receive individualized tutorials from Khan Academy on how to improve in diagnosed areas of growth.

Along with the PSAT and SAT assessments, other state-mandated assessments include the Illinois Science Assessment (ISA) for all grade 11 students, the ACCESS English language proficiency exam for all English Learners, and the Dynamic Learning Maps Alternate Assessment (DLM-AA), an alternate assessment of reading, math and science for students with the most severe cognitive disabilities.

To assist in District 88’s quest for college and career readiness for all students, as well as to comply with the federal guidelines associated with the receipt of federal Title 1 funds, District 88 is in a continuous cycle of improvement to ensure all students are benefiting from high-quality programs. As part of this process of constant improvement, we have identified the highest priority for the district is to ensure we have a rigorous, culturally responsive curriculum tied to the Common Core State Standards. We also have created and implemented a comprehensive system of standard, aligned common assessments for all District 88 courses. Those common assessments are used by our course and district-specific teams called Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) to track progress toward the acquisition of the required knowledge and skills in each course.

Students also have the opportunity to take Advanced Placement (AP)/college-level courses and exams. At the end of the course, students have the opportunity to earn college credit by taking the AP exam. If a student earns a score of 3, 4 or 5 on the AP exam (scores range from 1 to a max score of 5), the student will earn college credit before ever stepping foot in a college classroom.