Rashi's curriculum is based on standards – statements of the essential skills and abilities educators would like students to develop. Standards are statements of what we want students to know and be able to do. For example, one standard in second grade math at Rashi is, "Students will be able to identify two- and three-dimensional shapes, find common attributes, identify symmetrical figures, and identify types of sides (parallel and non-parallel)."
"This is the feeling I always knew you were supposed to have in a classroom."
How are the Rashi curriculum standards created and reviewed?
Curriculum committees made up of teachers from each division, administrators, specialists and outside consultants meet each year to review and write standards in specific subject areas. The committees study the state curriculum frameworks, national standards, receiving high school expectations, current research in best practices and necessary content knowledge for the future, and what is age-appropriate and captivating for students.
The committees write approximately 15 standards for each subject area at each grade level which enumerate the most important content for students to know. All of our standards are written for the typical Rashi student at that grade level.
We evaluate several subject areas each year as part of a three-year process. For example, language arts was reviewed in 2008-09 and math is being reviewed in 2009-10. The revised language arts standards are implemented in 2009-10 and will be evaluated in 2010-11, the year in which the revised math standards will be implemented. This continuous process ensures that our curriculum is constantly being updated and that each subject area is reevaluated every four years.
How is student progress reported?
Rashi uses standards-based report cards, on which the standards for each subject area are listed. Teachers report how frequently the students exhibit mastery of those skills (consistently, usually, sometimes, rarely and not applicable). This provides parents with more accurate and detailed reports of what skills their children possess and where we would like them to make more progress.