Pupils can study for CRCT over spring break

Web site aims to keep kids fresh for CRCT

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If students can't find anything to do with their one week of freedom during spring break, there's always studying.

With the yearly Criterion Referenced Competency Tests looming, Richmond County school officials created an online study tool for students to practice math and language arts problems before the standardized test begins April 14.

"We call it Spring Break Boot Camp," said Stacey Mabray, the district K-12 director of curriculum.

This year is the first time the district has launched an online study tool during spring break, but it is modeled on a similar program used during summer vacation.

Last summer, 1,436 students spent 25,000 hours studying on the district's online study program, Mabray said.

As far as getting students to forfeit their break to solve math equations, Mabray said it might be easier than it seems.

"We're not talking about you can't go swimming, you can't go to camp," Mabray said. "We're talking 30 minutes a day. It's really for when parents are looking for something for kids to do that can keep kids focused."

C.T. Walker Traditional Magnet School Principal Renee Kelly said students who commit 20 minutes a day to studying online could improve their chances on the CRCT.

Still, the bulk of what students should learn to prepare for the test is taught throughout the year, she said.

"We talk about CRCT from the beginning of the year," Kelly said. "If you do a practice problem every day, by the time the CRCT gets here it's like 'OK, here's just another test.' "

Teachers at C.T. Walker have sent e-mails to parents letting them know about the new online Spring Break Boot Camp, Kelly said.

Math activities will be available for students in third through fifth grades, and language arts practice will be available for those in third through eighth grades.

Students can log in to the district Web site using their student ID to complete 30-minute activities.

Students without a home computer can log in from the public library or anywhere else, Mabray said.

"We just hope the kids will use it," she said. "But we're not worried about the test. We know they're going to do well."

What is the CRCT?

The Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests were first implemented in 2000 and are designed to measure how well students acquire the skills and knowledge described in the Georgia Performance Standards.

Georgia law requires that all students in first through eighth grades take the CRCT in the content areas of reading, English/language arts, and mathematics. Students in third through eighth grades are also assessed in science and social studies.

Source: Georgia Department of Education

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Just My Opinion
Just My Opinion 04/04/11 - 05:00 am
I think Ms. Mabray and Ms.

I think Ms. Mabray and Ms. Kelly are dishing us a little bit of hooey here. They seem to minimize the "looming" CRCT and what the kids think of it. This CRCT is the cause of angst and high pressure for both students AND the teachers. Teachers feel the pressure because, besides individual ranking of students, classrooms are singled out and compared to other classes within the same school, the same county, and the state. So, not only are the results critiqued heavily, so are the ways the tests are administered. For example, if the teacher has a student who has to leave the room for some emergency, well, the way that's handled could be considered some sort of incident that could come back to haunt the teacher and the class. Yeah...no pressure.

class1 04/04/11 - 08:40 am
Pressure yes, however not on

Pressure yes, however not on students. Most are passed on to next grade anyway with a waiver from the parent.

Sweet son
Sweet son 04/04/11 - 12:55 pm
Don't need to sharpen the

Don't need to sharpen the pencils! Just sharpen the erasers! And don't get mad with me about my comment. Erasures still have some systems in HOT water!

scoobynews 04/04/11 - 06:19 pm
They don't even study during

They don't even study during the regular part of the school year what makes them think they are going to study for the CRCT during spring break! Funny!

lylagirl 04/04/11 - 06:23 pm
At least the board is making

At least the board is making an attempt to provide constructive resources for the students.Great idea Ms. Mabray...keep up the great work...

ya-ya 04/05/11 - 09:07 am
Great idea. I am all for any

Great idea. I am all for any study materials that will help our kids succeed.

PWRSPD 04/05/11 - 01:46 pm
Pressure is part of a test.

Pressure is part of a test. If everyone is doing their job then it should all work out. If not, change the answers as usual.

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