District Should Focus on Individual Student Performance, Rather Than PARCC Scores, Lazovick Says

Credits: Nicolas Fernandes

BRIDGEWATER, NJ - Bridgewater-Raritan Superintendent Russell Lazovick said he wants to stop focusing so much on the district’s standardized test score data and work with the teachers to identify where students need improvement.

The most recent PARCC exam data – from the 2014-2015 academic year – shows that students in the Bridgewater-Raritan school district are surpassing New Jersey’s average as well as other PARCC states. But Lazovick said he does not want to focus on this data because it is too outdated and does not point out areas of difficulty for specific students.

“We need to focus on local numbers for the individual students that make these numbers up,” he said at a recent board of education meeting.

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Lazovick said he plans to meet with teachers from the district’s schools to discuss what some of their students may need to work on. He said he believes this is the only way the district can help its students improve their PARCC scores.

“I want to know how the kids are doing,” he said. “I want [the teachers] to be able to talk to me about specific kids, all of their kids, regardless of how high they’re performing.”

Teachers cannot decide what they need to change about their lesson plans based on the data that the district is currently using, Lazovick said. If he had a better understanding of the performance of individual students, he said, he could suggest curricular changes.

“It allows them to make daily decisions about their instructional choices that maximize their instructional choices and actually show a change,” he said.

The reason the data gets so much publicity is because it is attached to teacher and administrative performance rather than student performance, Lazovick added.

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