Our Results

Overview of Einstein’s Schools (EMS) model including relevant data

The Einstein Montessori School’s (EMS) are school’s that are specifically designed for children with reading disabilities. These disabilities are caused by language, visual, memory and/or concentration processing impairments. Such impairments cause significant delays in reading, writing and spelling which can only be corrected by specialized instruction. EMS’s enrollment consists of students in the third through eighth grades.

Therefore, students have, at a minimum, three years of reading instruction prior to entering EMS. In traditional education systems, students in kindergarten through third grade “learn to read” and students in fourth grade on “read to learn”. EMS’s mission is to enroll those students that have not made the reading gains necessary to survive in the traditional classroom, or in other words “enroll students who are falling through the cracks”.
EMS’s educational model is specifically designed to take poor readers and non-readers through a progressive reading program to improve processing skills, thereby improving reading gains. The documents which follow will clearly show that EMS has been enormously successful in achieving reading gains. As an example of the tremendous gains achieved by EMS students, the following table provides a dramatic 2006 FCAT Reading Developmental Gain Scores comparison of fourth, fifth and sixth grade students at EMS along with the State and Brevard County average developmental gain scores. Essentially, EMS students in the fourth, fifth and sixth grade scored, respectively, reading gains of +55%, +46% and +87% over the average student’s reading gains in Brevard County.

GRADE
STATE ’05-’06
DEVELOPMENTAL GAIN
BREVARD COUNTY
’05-’06
DEVELOPMENTAL GAIN
EINSTEIN ’05-06
DEVELOPMENTAL GAIN
EINSTEIN GAINS IN %
Fourth
172
163
253
+55%
Fifth
46
50
73
+46%
Sixth
108
100
187
+87%

How Einstein Compares

The average student initially starts at EMS with FCAT reading scores within low-to-middle Level 1 on FCAT Reading. If a student in a traditional school setting is that far below his grade appropriate level in reading, that student would typically remain a poor readers for the rest of their life. At EMS, we have been able to consistently improve students’ gains over their previous “pre-EMS” gains. In fact, our students achieve some of the highest gain scores in the state when compared with traditional schools that have a small minority of reading disabled students. If our students were compared to similar populations, we easily would have the highest gains in the state. State assessment evidence, namely FCAT scores, certainly underscores this fact.

  • EMA’S FCAT Reading 2005-2006 gain scores for our fourth grade students were in the top six percentile (6%) in the state and were in the top first percentile (1%) in Brevard County.
  • EMA’s FCAT Reading 2005-2006 gain scores for our fifth grade students were in the top twenty-two percentile (22%) in the state and were in the top sixteen percentile (16%) in Brevard County.
  • EMA’s FCAT Reading 2005-2006 gain scores for our sixth grade students where in the top six percentile (6%) in the state and the top 5 percentile (5%) in Brevard County.
  • Facts about FCAT

    FCAT testing results are not a clear measurement of a student’s achievement if the test is so difficult that they merely “Christmas Tree” the score sheet. If a student is gaining only 5 months per year, they would be at a 1.9 reading level in the 3rd grade by the time they took the FCAT (1.9 years behind). By the 8th grade, they would be at a 4.4 reading level at the time they took the FCAT (4.4 years behind). Unfortunately, some of the 7th and 8th grade students enrolled at EMS are much as six years below their baseline reading level. This “compounded gain level stagnation” creates a situation where tests such as the FCAT, a test designed for students who read at grade level, should not be used when the student is reading more than two deviations below the mean. FCAT scoring becomes an unreliable assessment indicator for any student, like many here at EMS, who read two deviations below the mean.

    Woodcock Reading Mastery Test of Achievement

    EMA uses a more reliable assessment tool that has the benefit of properly assessing all students regardless of their grade level equivalency. This test, which is widely accepted in academic circles, is called the Woodcock Reading Mastery Test of Achievement-Revised (“Woodcock”).

    In fact the Woodcock test shows the following average gains for EMA students:

    3rd Grade Gains Over Prior Year
    4th Grade Gains Over Prior Year
    5th Grade Gains Over Prior Year
    6th Grade Gains Over Prior Year
    7th Grade Gains Over Prior Year
    8th Grade Gains Over Prior Year
    113%
    52%
    65%
    151%
    192%
    76%

    High Standards

    Given these enormous gains, it is no surprise that EMS has consistently exceeded its contractual student achievement goals, as set forth in its current charter contract with the Brevard County School District. In fact, EMS’s charter calls for an average reading gain of 25% per student every academic year. Clearly, Einstein has more than fulfilled this achievement outcome. Einstein has consistently met and/or exceeded its outcome goals for the remaining two contractual student achievement outcome categories; namely writing and math. Specifically, the charter contract denotes a 5% average yearly increase in each subject. Utilizing FCAT data from years 2005 and 2006 Florida Writes and FCAT Math, the following tables illustrate the school’s aforementioned success in exceeding this goal. In the first table, which focuses on Florida Writes, Einstein shows increases, in combined scoring, of 10% for Fourth Grade and 12% for Eighth Grade. The average increase for both grades, therefore, is 11%. This is a 6% increase over what our contractual obligation. The second table compares FCAT Mathematics Average Mean DSS scores from 2005 and 2006. Here, Einstein realizes an 8% overall gain.

    Grade
    2005 FCAT WRITES
    2006 FCAT WRITES
    % INCREASE
    4th
    2.6
    2.9
    12%
    8th
    3.1
    3.4
    10%

    The following charts illustrate the enormous overall average gains the students at Einstein demonstrated during the 2005-2006 school year. As you can see, the students demonstrated a 90% learning gain (1.29-.68=.61; .61/.68=.90). This gain is 65% over the contractual student achievement outcome gain. (.90-.25=.65)*. Below are the equivalency comparisons of entry into EMS for the 2005-2006 school year.



    ** Incoming Average Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by dividing the child’s initial score on the Basic Skills portion of the Woodcock Johnson Reading
    **Mastery Test taken when the child first arrived at EMS by the number of years the child had been in school prior to entering EMS
    ** 2005-2006 Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by calculating the gain on the Basic Skills test from May of 2005 to May of 2006
    ** Class Average indicates a 113.46% increase



    ** Incoming Average Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by dividing the child’s initial score on the Basic Skills portion of the Woodcock Johnson Reading
    **Mastery Test taken when the child first arrived at EMS by the number of years the child had been in school prior to entering EMS
    ** 2005-2006 Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by calculating the gain on the Basic Skills test from May of 2005 to May of 2006
    ** Class Average indicates a 52.02% increase



    ** Incoming Average Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by dividing the child’s initial score on the Basic Skills portion of the Woodcock Johnson Reading
    Mastery Test taken when the child first arrived at EMS by the number of years the child had been in school prior to entering EMS
    ** 2005-2006 Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by calculating the gain on the Basic Skills test from May of 2005 to May of 2006
    ** Class Average indicates a 65.54% increase



    ** Incoming Average Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by dividing the child’s initial score on the Basic Skills portion of the Woodcock Johnson Reading
    **Mastery Test taken when the child first arrived at EMS by the number of years the child had been in school prior to entering EMS
    ** 2005-2006 Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by calculating the gain on the Basic Skills test from May of 2005 to May of 2006
    ** Class Average indicates a 151.74% increase



    ** Incoming Average Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by dividing the child’s initial score on the Basic Skills portion of the Woodcock Johnson Reading Mastery Test taken when the child first arrived at EMS by the number of years the child had been in school prior to entering EMS
    ** 2005-2006 Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by calculating the gain on the Basic Skills test from May of 2005 to May of 2006
    ** Class Average indicates a 192.69% increase



    ** Incoming Average Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by dividing the child’s initial score on the Basic Skills portion of the Woodcock Johnson Reading Mastery Test taken when the child first arrived at EMS by the number of years the child had been in school prior to entering EMS
    ** 2005-2006 Annual Learning Equivalent was determined by calculating the gain on the Basic Skills test from May of 2005 to May of 2006
    ** NOTE: The two children demonstrating a negative loss entered the school as grade level readers. Through their duration at EMS, their reading scores remained at or above grade level. It is hypothesized that these children were placed at EMS for reasons other than reading instruction. However, the instructional model of EMS did not meet the needs of these children. As a result, supplemental materials to aid high readers has been added to the curriculum of EMS.
    ** Class Average indicates a -15.88% decrease. With removal of these two students, the Class Average rises to 76.43%

    In Summary

    Inherent to the design, mission and purpose of Einstein is the servicing of a student population whose reading levels are far below grade level expectation. Given the current requirements for meeting AYP, which relies on a large proportion of our student population to be at or above their grade level expectation for reading, it is certainly expected that a school such as Einstein would have difficulty achieving AYP. Here’s why: In order to make the gains necessary to reach their appropriate reading level,(or FCAT level 3), the student must achieve gains that exceed one year for every year that they attend school. In other words a sixth grader that reads three years behind must achieve a 1.25 grade level gain for 12 years in order to reach grade appropriate levels. Therefore, by the time a student enrolls at Einstein, it is almost statistically impossible for this child to have a positive impact on AYP; even with the tremendous gains they make at this school. In order to fulfill its mission and purpose Einstein enrolls students whose low reading levels would otherwise adversely affect traditional public schools chances of reaching AYP. Indeed, Einstein is very proud of its role in providing the positive learning environment and appropriate mitigation tools necessary to successfully address a student’s reading deficiencies while, at the same time, providing an essential benefit to traditional public schools in the facilitation of the latter’s ability to achieve AYP.
    Because of the success of our instructional model and the gains that were made by our students, the University of Central Florida entered into a collaborative venture with Einstein in an effort to create a model that other schools can use. This model begins with the clear and factual understanding that teachers in the traditional educational system do not have a sufficient background, if any, in language disabilities. Because students with reading disabilities are often caused by language processing disorders these teachers are ill equipped to effectively mitigate these issues. In contrast, Einstein’s unique instructional model blends speech pathologist with educators to educate these children’s that have reading disabilities caused by language disorders. Einstein Montessori School is the only school that blends these professionals in any effort to mitigate reading disabilities for children with language disorders. These children have been referred to as the students that fall through the cracks. It is now our intention to seal these cracks by given these children there needed therapies so that learning to read will become easier for them.

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