Quarter grades improve

Trends coincide with ROAR period rollout, other factors



Quarter one fail rates decreased by an average of 3.4 percent from last year to this year. This was also the school’s first quarter since implementing the ROAR support period at the beginning of this school year.

The largest decreases in fail rates come from the beginning classes of the Integrated Math program, the most drastic being 19.3 percent drop in IM1, from a 40.5 percent fail rate to 21.2 percent.

IM2 has seen a similar pattern with a drop in fail rates with a 15.8 percent decrease, going from the 40.8 percent of students failing to only 25 percent.

IM2 teacher Levi Fletcher believes the drop comes from time spent in ROAR that allows students greater access to academic support.

“That wasn’t always the case before. It had to be just at lunch, just after school, or before school,” Fletcher said. “Now there is another time built right [into the day] where maybe it’s not a huge [problem] that has been holding you up, but it’s maybe something that can be taken care of in 15-20 minutes, and then all of a sudden you’re back on track and rolling.”

Fletcher said students and teachers of Common Core curriculum also become more empowered and comfortable in their subjects as the years go on. Both IM1 and IM2 began two years ago, but IM3 only decreased by 1.5 percent since its introduction last year.

“Teachers have more experience with how we’re teaching the content and how we’re helping students understand and expecting where there might be some problems,” Fletcher said. “The students who are coming in have another year of Common Core, so they are more ready for the types of questions and that is going to keep on improving.”

Although Roseville High School’s first quarter returned fewer D’s and F’s and more A’s and B’s, principal David Byrd said conclusions about ROAR’s effectiveness require more data.

“There could be a bunch of factors that go into grade improvement,” Byrd said. “Some people may immediately say, ‘Aha, that proves it is all because of ROAR support.’ It is the first little data point, but we need to do that for a whole year, and we need to compare the end of the second quarter, the end of the third quarter and the end of the fourth quarter to really get a feel for if we see these trends continuing.”

Year-over-year, first quarter D and F rates decreased 12.6 percent in CP US History, 11.8 percent in Freshman Seminar, 11.4 percent in CP Government and 8.2 percent in CP Chemistry.
Increases in academic performance are not consistent across the board. In classes like CP English 10 and CP English 12, fail rates increased by over 7 percent from last year to this year.

Junior Rachael Downie values the thirty-minute ROAR support period.

“I’m a very organized person,” Downie said. “I like to have lists. If there is something on that list I need to cross off that pertains to one of those classes, having that time outside of the academic time really benefits my academic success. Staying after school for me is kind of an issue with ride situations and having a younger sibling, so being able to have the time in the school hours has benefitted me way more.”

IM1 teacher Paul Stewart said the thirty minutes help him get around time conflicts and to supporting his students.

“Being a coach after school, I just don’t have time to really help them. So if they can’t come in before school or during lunch because we have different lunches, they are able to utilize ROAR for that opportunity,” Stewart said. “I see they are taking ownership of it. A lot of times [before], they won’t do that. They won’t come in, they won’t come after school, they’ve got too many things going on, but [ROAR] gives them the opportunity to come in and to do the best they can.”

Junior Jacob Watson enjoys the ROAR period because it allows him to lighten his workload, especially in his AP Art History class.

“It’s actually become my pivotal period in my schedule,” Watson said. “Because I don’t always have time outside of school to finish work.”