Dist. 12 6th-Graders Make Their Mark on Writing Test
Byline: Threse Bonnan
Fourth in state. This is not the achievement of a football team, speech team or marching band. This placement was achieved through scores on the writing assessment portion of the Illinois Goals Assessment Program, IGAP, by the sixth-grade students of Roselle School District 12 during the 1997-98 school year.
Roselle placed fourth in the state in writing skills with an average score of 26.4. The highest score in the state was 26.8. The average score in the state was 22.6.
This is the second consecutive year that the sixth-grade scores of the Roselle district have been among the top four in the state.
"The student taking the test is faced with a topic and a blank piece of paper, and they must write an extemporaneous essay. This is test format that
would strike terror in any tester of any age," said Marge Landers, who has been teaching sixth-grade language arts at Roselle Middle School for 14 years. "Throughout the school year we work on writing skills so that by the time students take the IGAP test in March they are comfortable with extemporaneous writing.
"What we see in our sixth-grade scores is also the culmination of writing skills that started in the lower grades. In our district we keep a writing folder for each student so that from grade to grade the teachers can assess their writing progress."
Landers also attributes the level of achievement to the team work that takes place in the sixth grade program. Social studies and reading teacher Jill Rogers incorporates writing projects in her curriculum, and science teacher Rosemary Gallo emphasizes the importance of accurate communication of written information in science reports. …