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Standard 3: Teaching and Assessing for Learning

Havana Middle School ensures the alignment and articulation of the curriculum by employing and adhering to the Florida Continuous Improvement Model (FCIM). The curriculum is aligned with the Florida competencies and objectives, and is taught at the appropriate depth of knowledge and performance level indicators required for mastery. A school pacing guide for all subjects in grades 6-8 is developed and followed to establish that all objectives are taught throughout the school year.  The pacing guide keeps teachers and students focused while guaranteeing instructional uniformity as students move from one class to another within the school. Research based instructional resources and technology programs assist teachers by providing opportunities for successful student learning. Both the school's and the district's assessment programs provide assessment items written to mimic the FCAT.

Instruction is research based and data driven. Best practices are consistently implemented assuring achievement for all students. Teachers utilize research based textbooks and supplementary materials to comply with instructional objectives. Employment of current technology affords students multiple opportunities for active engagement in the learning process and opportunities to apply higher order thinking skills. Smart boards, LCD projectors, and various computer programs like FCAT Explorer and SuccessMaker involve students in the learning process through various applications and settings. Teachers also provide students with collective instructional strategies such as common board configuration and access to test strategy posters which are available and reviewed in all classrooms on campus.

Student successes are monitored on a monthly basis by the school leadership team via school wide monthly testing of lesson objectives that have been covered in classroom instruction. Teachers and school leaders are able to determine areas of student mastery and areas which need improvement. The results of the tests influence how subsequent curriculum is provided to the students. All student grades are recorded into an electronic grading system which can be viewed by the school leaders at all times, thus allowing student progress to be monitored between monthly testing sessions. Teachers hold regularly scheduled department and team meetings to collaborate on best practices for instruction which ensure and enhance student achievement and learning. Professional development days are provided by the district and school offering opportunities to engage in areas of interest listed by teachers on their Individual Professional Development Plan (IPDP), insuring a continuous state of professional development.

HMS exercises multiple resources like routine progress reporting, the implementation of Engrade, an electronic grading program, PTA, Title-1 meetings, PHONE RECORDINGS, and sporting events to engage families in meaningful ways that keeps them informed of their children's learning progress. Programs like SSTRIDE, Champions, and Americorp provide students opportunities for mentored instruction which are consistent with the school's values and beliefs about teaching and learning.  

In lieu of the small class size, consistent class changes, and homeroom mentoring, the school ensures that all students are well known by at least one adult advocate who supports that student's educational experience. Extra-curricular activities such as sport teams and band, time allotted by the guidance counselor, and cross-curriculum teaching affords students opportunities to engage with more than just their standard teachers, thus encouraging student exposure to additional adult advocates in the school to support the student's educational experience.

HMS provides learning support services with a systematic approach to the needs of all students.  Differentiating instruction is ensured through our leadership, intervention, and department teams.  In addition, students are served through our guidance counselor, behavior specialist, and inclusion teacher.  Students enhance their educational opportunities as they participate in Success Maker and FCAT Explorer.  Testing is monitored by diagnosing and providing additional time for students with individual education plans.