Facebook
Edutopia on Facebook
Twitter
Edutopia on Twitter
Google+
Edutopia on Google+
Pinterest
Edutopia on Pinterest Follow Me on Pinterest
WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Mesquite Elementary School

Grades 3-5 | Tucson, AZ

Student Achievement Skyrockets at a Tucson Elementary School

An effective classroom-based program of differentiated instruction, called Reteach and Enrich, kicked off eight straight years of success at Mesquite Elementary. Read more about the program.

Sources: Vail School DIstrict and Arizona Department of Education. Infographic: Maili Holiman

Reteach and Enrich began in the 2002-03 school year. Students are given weekly assessments designed to measure students' understanding of each week's math concepts. Based on assessment results, students are placed into groups receiving either re-teaching or enrichment activities. At the end of the year, statewide tests measure students' overall math level. After the Reteach and Enrich program, the number of third-, fourth-, and fifth-graders meeting and exceeding state math standards increased significantly. Teachers at Mesquite report that Reteach and Enrich was key to the increase in test scores; however, since this was not a controlled study, it should be noted that many other factors could also explain the increase.

Watch our Reteach and Enrich video.

Read more about how Reteach and Enrich works.

Comments (4)Sign in or register to postSubscribe to comments via RSS

Blanco's picture
Blanco
Technology Instructional Specialist

"Students are given weekly assessments designed to measure students' understanding of each week's math concepts. Based on assessment results, students are placed into groups receiving either re-teaching or enrichment activities."

I expected something more significant and inspiring from an Edutopia "Schools that Work" example than simply one that tests kids on a weekly basis and reteaches areas of weakness. Of course they are doing better on state tests: They are practicing ALL year for them! This is just sad!

Mariko Nobori's picture
Mariko Nobori
Former Managing Editor and Producer, Edutopia
Blogger

Hi Blanco - Thank you for your comments, we appreciate your sensitivity to the issue of standardized testing. We chose to cover Mesquite because their Reteach and Enrich program ensures student learning and mastery. They have found a way to provide the extra time and instruction some students may need, without stigmatizing or labeling those students. Although their test scores are high, the educators at Mesquite are clear that they are "teaching to the standard," as several teachers explained, not teaching to the test. As a school and as a district, they have agreed upon the state standards they feel are most important for students to succeed in school and in life, and focus their instruction accordingly. Their principal explained it this way: "Our whole purpose behind reteach and enrich was not because we were chasing great test scores. It was because as an educator we have the responsibility of ensuring that our students have mastered what they needed to master."

Curt's picture

This model is effective in ensuring that students are gaining skills and knowledge before moving on. This is important if students are going to be successful in the future. This is not "teaching to the test". This is teaching to the expectations of students. If we expect students to have a certain set of skills, then we have to do our best to give them every opportunity to obtain those skills. Even if there were no high stakes tests to worry about, this would be an effective model that I would support because it seems to be good for kids.

blog Games in Education: Teacher Takeaways

Last comment 2 weeks 2 days ago in Game-Based Learning

blog Focus on the Process and Results Will Follow

Last comment 2 weeks 4 days ago in School Leadership

Discussion Intelligent people are happier

Last comment 3 weeks 4 days ago in Assessment

Discussion Why Your Kid's Grades Wont Matter: Part Two

Last comment 1 month 17 hours ago in Assessment

blog Growth Mindset: A Driving Philosophy, Not Just a Tool

Last comment 2 weeks 15 hours ago in Teaching Strategies

Sign in and Join the Discussion! Not a member? Register to join the discussion.