District Sees Tremendous Growth with Istation’s Reliable Data
In her search for a Response to Intervention (RTI) solution, Michelle Herkert of Jersey Community Unit School District 100 in Illinois needed a program that could provide results. Though Jersey was already using a handful of products, the programs weren’t giving the district what Herkert called “any meat for the data.”
As the district psychologist for prekindergarten through 7th grade, Herkert had been leading the district’s initiative for implementing the RTI process for a few years, but she needed a more reliable way to gather data about students for the movement to have any success.
Since replacing other programs with Istation, Jersey has seen dynamic growth in the number of students reading at grade level. Istation Reading provided Jersey schools with the formative data they needed to not only identify student needs but also to accurately measure and track student progress.
Partnering with Istation
Jersey teachers heard about Istation at an educational technology conference in Mooresville, North Carolina, and there observed the program in action. Impressed by proven results and the program’s ability to accurately measure progress, the Jersey teachers approached the district and requested a partnership.
Once Jersey’s administration was on board, the district was set. All four pre-K through grade 7 schools even replaced several reading programs with Istation, implementing the program in full force.
Herkert developed a plan with Istation to revamp the district’s RTI program. Her desire to put the responsibility of reading intervention back into the hands of the general education teachers led to the creation of a co-teaching model.
Guiding teachers through the implementation process and encouraging bi-monthly assessments was key. Herkert and her team work with teachers to pinpoint areas of focus and meet once a month with every teacher in the district to go over student data.
She recalled how Istation made the RTI program so successful, saying “Istation fell right in with [the initiative] beautifully, because it allows us to measure our data and measure our interventions.
With Istation’s assessments and reports, Jersey finally got a consistent, reliable, and valid measure of reading. As a result of being able to accurately measure interventions, the district has seen tremendous progress.
In just two school years since implementing Istation, the number of students in kindergarten through 3rd grade who scored at Tier 3 has decreased by over 70 percent.
Additionally, Jersey has decreased its kindergarten through 3rd grade special education referrals significantly. Since using Istation, the number of students diagnosed with learning disabilities in Jersey decreased from 21 percent to only 10 percent.
Herkert attributes her district’s success to being able to use Istation’s accurate data to target and address student needs more precisely. Working with their RTI program, she says, ultimately put the time and resources to teach back in the educators’ hands.
More than that, though, Herkert sees a positive change in her students’ attitudes. By tracking their own success, students formerly seen as “passive learners” have become more motivated than ever, in turn helping them improve even further.