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Sunshine in October…we hope so!

We enter the 8th week of October with a sign of relief–our MEAP testing is completed for grades 3-5.  We want you to know how hard our students (your children) worked to show what they know.    The pressure is tremendous for all involved.

The week ahead brings some sunshine (YAHOO), Turkey Trot and and another walkathon prize:  PIZZA PARTY for some of our top earners.

For those of you who are participating in the TURKEY TROT, please be aware that the track route has changed due to the construction.  Look at the MAP in your child’s Turkey Trot bag.

Have a great week…and enjoy every sliver of sunshine you can find this week!

Mrs. Reagan

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And the rain rain rain…

came down down down in rushing wild riv’lets!   This past weekend reminded me of this classic Winnie the Pooh song..and once I thought of it, I could not get it out of my head.

I hope you were able to make the most of the rainy weekend and use this as an opportunity to relax and watch a movie or two.

During the upcoming school week, we will be finishing up MEAP tests in grades 3-5.  Our students (your children) have been working exceptionally hard on this test.  In spite of what you may hear on the news, we want you to know that the test is challenging and our teachers and students work hard to both prepare for and complete the assessments.  The results of the tests will be back in early January and we will use these to adjust our instruction for the second half of the year.

We also have another PTC sponsored pizza night this week. Save your pizza appetite for Wednesday, October 17.  Order from Marcos and give them the name of your child’s teacher and credit will be applied to this class.  The class with the most pizza’s ordered receives a pizza lunch on Marcos (and the PTC)!

Have a great week…and stay dry and grounded.  Sounds like we have both rain and wind in our forecast.

Mrs. Reagan


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October 8-12 Highlights

The weekend weather was a reminder of the damp, chilly days autumn in Michigan is known for.

As the weather gets cooler, our LOST & FOUND grows with sweatshirts, jackets and other outwear accessories.  If your child is missing a sweatshirt remind them to search in this order:

  1. Backpack
  2. Bottom of locker
  3. Lost and Found  (located on tables across from the library).


This week’s highlight include MEAP testing for our children in grades 3, 4 and 5.  For those of

you who follow education in the news, these scores are used to ranks schools statewide and also determine ongoing support via funding and/or sanctions.

The pressure on teachers is tremendous.   While we work diligently to improve our instruction for all learners AND to prepare our students for these tests, we also believe it is critically important foster a climate that encourages all our learners do their best on all learning activities, including the MEAP tests.

If you child is in grades 3-5, suport them with a healthy snack each day and words of encouragement.  We are proud of them and their focus on these grueling days.

Have a great week!

Mrs. Reagan



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October = MEAP TESTING, Grades 3-5

As we move into the month of October, all elementary students in grades 3-5 will be participating in the annual MEAP (Michigan Educational Assessment Program). MEAP is Michigan’s general assessment for students in grades 3 through 9. It is based on Michigan’s grade level content expectations in reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies. Students are assessed in the fall of each year on the prior year’s expectations.

Test dates and times are predetermined by the Michigan Department of Education. Assessments are administered in sections over a course of several days. Administration times vary from 20 – 80 minutes per section. 2012 test dates are as follows:

  • Oct. 9 & 10: Reading(grades 3 – 5)
  • Oct. 11: Writing Day 1 (grades 4)
  • Oct. 16: Mathematics (grades 3 – 5)
  • Oct. 17: Writing Day 2 (grades 4), Science (grades 5)

The MEAP results are used for many purposes, including informing instructional practice and tracking student performance. MEAP is also used for a number of high-stakes accountability measures, such as determining a building’s and district’s Adequate Yearly Progress, school rankings and designations (Reward, Focus or Priority), and educator evaluations.

As the uses of the test results expand, the importance of ensuring high-quality, fair, and
standardized test administration increases. Schools must administer tests within state and
federal guidelines. These guidelines sometime appear restrictive; however, these guidelines ensure equitability between all schools and all students.

For example, resources, such as writing posters, maps, multiplication tables, and other content information on the wall, that might provide students with clues to answers of test questions must be removed from classrooms. if students can view these resources during testing, they will have an advantage over students who cannot use these resources.

In addition, we have found that students do their best when additional distractions are removed from the testing environment such as snacks, books, and art supplies. Students who finish early are encouraged to go back and recheck their answers and then wait quietly while their classmates complete the assessment.

We are asking that you partner with us to ensure that your child be prepared for the MEAP test in these ways:

  • Attend school on all testing dates,
  • Before each test, get a good night’s sleep
  • On test days AND ALL DAYS eat a healthy breakfast
  • Understand  the importance of doing his/her personal best!
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MEAP Cut Scores: Guidance from our Curriculum Office

From Mrs. Karla Akins, Director of Curriculum and Instruction

Each year, public school students are required by the State of Michigan to take assessments at various grade levels in the areas of mathematics, reading, writing, science and social studies. Students in grades 3 – 9 take the Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP) test and students in eleventh grade take the Michigan Merit Exam (MME).

Recently, the State Board of Education adopted more rigorous proficiency standards (cut scores) for these assessments which more closely align with ACT College and Career Readiness Standards. Cut scores separate test takers into various categories; advanced, proficient, partially proficient and not proficient. With this year’s new cut scores in place, parents may notice their child is not at the same proficiency level as previous years. A lower score does not mean that a child isn’t gaining academic skills, rather it is a reflection of the higher standards. While we anticipate an initial decline in the number of students reported as “proficient”, we are confident this change will be temporary due to ongoing school improvement efforts.

In order to prepare districts for the implementation of these new cut scores, the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has released historical assessment data showing how districts would have scored had the new standards for proficiency been in place since 2007. Attached are graphs showing how Hudsonville Public School students would have compared to the Ottawa Area Intermediate School District and state averages. More detailed data can be accessed at MISchoolData portal.

Prior to the spring release of MEAP and MME reports, several other measures are used by our staff to ensure students are making academic progress. Attendance, classroom participation, class work and formative and summative assessments are used to determine the level of support needed to prepare students for the next step in their education. In addition, several of our S.O.A.R. I (strategic plan) goals reflect Hudsonville Public Schools’ commitment to preparing students for a future career in a global economy.

If you would like additional information about changes to the MEAP or MME, or more specific information on how your child’s school is working to prepare students to meet these higher standards, please contact your building principal or visit:

This document contains charts comparing our progress over the past four years to other schools in the county and state:  MEAP Nov Letter 2011-12


Karla Akins, Director of Curriculum and Instruction


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Information About MEAP Cut Scores


    •    Each year, public school students in grades 3-9 take the Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP) test and 11th graders take the Michigan Merit Exam (MME).

•    The Michigan State Board of Education recently approved new MEAP and MME “cut scores” for Mathematics, Reading, Science and Social Studies.  A cut score is the score that separates test takers into various categories, such as advanced, proficient, partially proficient and not proficient.

•    The new cut scores are higher and “raise the bar” for our students. They are intended to be a better measure of student progress toward being career and college ready.

•     While we anticipate an initial decline in the number of students reported as “proficient,” we are confident this change will be temporary due to ongoing school improvement efforts and student support.

    •    If your student is reported as “not proficient,” it does not mean that your student isn’t gaining academic skills or is falling behind.  It means that on the day of the test, your student was not yet proficient on the material being tested. Several other measures are used in our district throughout the year to insure that your student is making academic progress.

We maintain high standards for our students and their test scores are consistently among the highest in the state. We anticipate this trend will continue even with the new cut scores.

If you would like additional information about changes to the MEAP or MME, please contact your building principal or visit or

Additional MEAP “Cut Score” Information:

Facts about Michigan’s New “Cut Scores” (pdf)

Webcast – Ottawa Area Intermediate School District

Curriculum Links:

MME Scores – Spring 2011 (pdf)

MEAP Scores – Fall 2010 (pdf)

21st Century Learning Parent Presentation

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Our 8th Week of School!

WOW!  We are into our 8th week of school.  Truly, this year is flying by at breakneck speed.

We finished our MEAP testing (grades 3-5) last week and all of our students worked exceptionally hard to do their best on these tests.  The tests were harder and this required more intense focus for our students.  We are relieved to have these behind us.  An upcoming post (later this week), will provide information about the new cut scores for the MEAP for the coming year.  Not only are the tests harder, they are also going to be scored harder.  As always, we are working at a rapid pace to keep up with the state requirements and making changes to our curriculum to support our learners.

The week ahead looks calm and quiet from the school snapshot end….but, as always, I encourage you to check your child’s class blog for special events or announcements at the classroom level.

The big excitement this week will be the district wide PE sponsored Turkey Trot!  This will happen on Tuesday and it will be held at the Baldwin Stadium.  I will be there with my camera and my Turkey Trot shirt.  Let’s hope for nice weather.

Halloween celebrations will be happening this coming Thursday through next Monday.  Because there are multiple classrooms celebrating on different days, you will need to visit class blogs for dates/times.

Have a great week!

Mrs. Reagan

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MEAP Tests Begin October 11

Students in grades 3, 4 and 5 will be taking the state assessment test (MEAP) beginning Tuesday, October 11 and continue on October  12, 13, 18 and 19.

All students must be present during the full testing period on each of these four days.  If your child is sick on a testing day, KEEP THEM HOME FROM SCHOOL!  Your child will be allowed to make up the test on specific make-up days the following week.

The guidelines for assessment are dictated by the Michigan Department of Education’s Office of Educational Assessment and Accountability.  As the building principal, I ensure that we follow the procedures for security and assessment administration.

Please help your child to be prepared for the tests with adequate sleep and breakfast.  Rest and a healthy diet provide the best foundation for learning daily…and especially on test days.

The schedule for MEAP tests for each grade is as follows:

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Another Beautiful Week Ahead

As we begin week 6, we are happily embracing the gorgeous fall weather…knowing that soon it will be dark longer and much colder!

Many thanks to our PTC for the best ever popcorn Friday!  I wish all of you could have seen the happy faces when the popcorn was delivered to classrooms.  And, my thought was this:  What a simple treat that makes an ordinary Friday special and fun.

Our week ahead has field trips for our PK classes, fire safety for grades PK, K and 4th  and MEAP testing for our learners in grades 3-5.  The MEAP tests are administered over a four day period and the results determine our school ranking in the state.  We take the tests seriously focusing on high quality instruction throughout the year in grades PK-5 as the best source of preparation.

I hope you are enjoying the stunning weather this weekend!  Here’s to a great week ahead.

Mrs. Reagan