Mid-year testing to help new reading teachers move forward

CONWAY, SC (WMBF) The new Horry County School District reading interventionists have been in schools for about two months now, constantly testing your child's reading skills to see where they can jump in and help.

Now middle and elementary school students are going through mid-year testing, which will help show the new teachers what direction to go in. The plan is to combat last year's numbers- where starting in the third grade, a growing number of students didn't meet reading and language requirements.

This is how the new teachers assess how to help your child: The school district has been following a national model which breaks down students needs. The model is called RTI, or Response to Intervention, and it ranks the level of support students need to learn.

To see a visual breakdown of the model that shows how these interventionists are helping students, click here.

The district is trying to zone in on the twenty percent of students experiencing difficulty with reading. Fifteen percent of students will be getting supplemental instruction, like tutoring and extra work. About five percent of students are pulled out of their regular class work to help with their reading skills.

WMBF News spoke with a reading interventionist who has been dealing with elementary students in that five percent, and she said she works with struggling students for two hours every day. "Our students come in as reluctant or struggling readers," said reading interventionist Julleen Binder. "And having not experienced much success I think it works for them to see that they actually can learn what we're trying to teach them."

Some interventionists say they're dealing with some students who are two to three levels behind where they should be.

This is something the Horry County School district said it wasn't able to do before they hired reading teachers, but now there's the staffing to look at every child to see how they can be helped.

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