Great Falls Public Schools offer a comprehensive K-12 curriculum incorporating all content and performance standards in compliance with Montana Standards of Accreditation. In accordance with ARM 10.55.602, the District has an established curriculum and assessment development process which reviews curricula in all subject areas at intervals not exceeding five years. This cooperative process involves members of the community including teachers, administrators, parents, trustees, specialists, and when available, tribal representatives and state resource people.
While the curriculum documents provide the Board approved roadmap describing what students will learn in Great Falls classrooms, the implementation documents prescribe how the students will learn. The implementation guides vary in style and complexity, but for most teachers, these instructional tools provide pacing guidance, vocabulary emphasis, and essential knowledge expectations. They help teachers fulfill the promise to parents and students that students are studying the state and community approved curriculum.
Assessment provides meaningful data regarding student achievement using multiple measures. With guidance from the Montana Office of Public Instruction, Great Falls Public Schools uses a wide variety of assessments to inform our instruction. Teachers use multiple measures within their classroom to ensure learning. Common district assessments provide information to teachers, administrators, and parents regarding how well the students moved toward proficiency against approved curricular standards. NWEA MAP testing in grades K through 10 provides information that helps identify areas for academic growth. Finally, SBAC (grades 3-8), MSA (grades 5 & 8), and ACT (grade 11) provide information that demonstrates growth toward state standards. These tests provide valid and reliable data which inform decisions regarding curriculum and instructional changes.
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