Dear Johnson Parents and Guardians,
As the 2016-2017 school year draws to a close, I’d like to formally thank you for your continued partnership in making Johnson Elementary a premier school in Huron Valley. Being recognized this past year as a “Reward School” substantiates that together, great is and does happen here at Johnson! Not only did we show greater growth in the past year than 95% of the schools across Michigan, but we also scored in the 90th percentile on that same list. This means that, according to the 2015-2016 M-STEP, Johnson students out performed 90% of the schools statewide. Indeed, we are quite proud of that accomplishment and you should be as well! We’ll have to wait and see what this year’s results yield.
Moving forward, sustainability will be the key to our continued success. Collectively, our goal should be for all 380+ students at Johnson to reach proficiency as measured by any and every metric used to assess – NWEA, M-STEP, Fountas and Pinnell, etc. As lofty a goal as that may seem, anything less is unacceptable. This is where your partnership and dedication is crucial. In the spirit of continued growth, much talk and research has been dedicated to mitigating “summer loss,” and rightfully so. Summer learning loss is defined as the loss of academic skills and knowledge over the course of summer holidays. The loss in learning varies across grade level, subject matter, and family income. Research shows that when it comes to summer learning loss, math takes one of the biggest hits. On average, students lose about 2.6 months worth of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation skills during their summer break. Summer loss for reading varies across socio-economic levels. Low income students generally lose about 2 months of reading achievement. Middle income students experience slight gains in reading performances.
So, what can you do to mitigate summer loss? The answer is quite simple – keep good study habits alive and well over the summer! When it comes to helping stanch summer learning loss, parents have a key role to play. Learning loss is much less pronounced, if there at all, in families that enrolled children in classes, took trips to local libraries, participated in reading programs, or took advantage of other, often free, learning opportunities. Locally, Milford Public Library is a great resource for summer reading programs. More than anything, continue to read to, with, and by your child! Numerous studies have shown that children have much better reading outcomes when parents are involved in learning about and helping their children with literacy.
If you are interested in a structured program, I’d encourage you to look into a program out of Grand Rapids known as GRASP. This is a nine week summer program that will send you workbooks and scantron sheets for your child to fill out. When each section is completed, you send in the scantron sheet and GRASP will provide you your results and a completion certificate. To learn more, go to: http://www.grps.org/grasp
I know that the best is still yet to come for Johnson. Thank you for your continued dedication to the success of our students. Have a safe and relaxing summer!
With Jaguar Pride,
Principal, Johnson Elementary