Fostoria City Schools

Home of the Redmen

August 2017

Welcome to the 2017-2018 school year at Fostoria City Schools!  It is with great pride and enthusiasm that I write this first newsletter to introduce myself to you as the new Fostoria City Schools Curriculum Director.  I am excited to have the opportunity to utilize my skills as an educational leader, knowledge of curriculum and instruction, and staff development to continue to move Fostoria City Schools down the path to greatness!  My goal is to serve as a resource and support for staff, students, and families alike – to be a true partner in education to ensure every child’s success.

As curriculum director, there will be several areas that I will be working on and supporting staff and students in. First and foremost,

I will be focusing on consistent implementation of instructional strategies to increase student achievement across the district and utilizing data to drive our instruction. Other areas that I will be focusing on will be grant writing, coordination of State Testing for the district, facilitation of a review of the district’s science curriculum and potential new curriculum adoption, and providing structure for our Resident Educator program. I will also continue supporting our three elementary schools as they move into Year 3 as Leader in Me Schools and provide support and direction for our Junior Senior High School as they enter their first year implementing LEAD.

As Curriculum Director, my door is always open, and I welcome your comments or questions. Please continue to check the district website regularly - My goal is to have helpful links, educational resources, new information, upcoming events, and additional information to help support you. Please feel free to reach out via phone or email or stop by my office – Room 121 at the FJSHS.

Mrs. Tera Matz
Curriculum Director                
Phone: 419-436-4163                    
Extension 1244                                 
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Ohio State Testing Information

Third Grade Reading Guarantee Promotion Score

In 2015-2016 and 2016-2017, the promotion score was set on the reading subscore of Ohio’s State Test in grade 3 English language arts. To complete the transition from the OAA in reading to Ohio’s State Test in English language arts, the State Board of Education has set the state’s 2017-2018 Third Grade Reading Guarantee promotion cut score on the English language arts scaled score. For the 2017-2018 school year, the Third Grade Reading Guarantee promotion cut score is 672. Any student who scores 672 or higher on the English language arts scaled score will be eligible for promotion at the end of the year. In addition, the Department has approved for the 2017-2018 school year the use of the grade 3 reading subscore (the two-digit, reading-only score on Ohio’s State Test in grade 3 English language arts) as an alternative reading assessment. For the 2017-2018 school year, the promotion scores on the alternative reading assessments will remain comparable to a 44 on the grade 3 reading subscore. NWEA MAP Reading continues to be approved as an alternative reading assessment as well. For the 2017-2018 the comparable score will remain at 196. 

Practice Test Site Updates  
Based on feedback from the field, both online and paper practice test materials have had a major refresh for the 2017-2018 school year. The 2017-2018 Practice Site Guidance Document covers these changes in detail and provides step-by-step directions for using the Practice Test Site.

For More Information

Vistit the  Ohio State Tests Portal

State Social Studies Tests Eliminated

The recently passed budget bill immediately eliminates Ohio’s State Tests in social studies for grades 4 and 6. The bill also requires that each district or school continue to teach and assess social studies in at least the fourth and sixth grades at the local level. A district or school can determine how the content is locally assessed, which can be either formative or summative. Districts do not report results to the Ohio Department of Education. All practice tests and released items for the grades 4 and 6 social studies assessments will remain on Ohio’s State Testing Portal as a resource for districts.

Release of Spring 2017 Test Items

A partial release of items from the spring 2017 Ohio State Tests is now available in the Ohio’s State Test portal. These items give educators insight into the kinds of questions students experienced and are a useful tool to inform classroom instruction. Included with each item in this release are the associated learning standard(s) and the scoring rubrics. Examples of student responses also are available to illustrate actual work and the corresponding points earned on the student examples.  

Online Practice Tests Are Now Able To Be Scored

The half-length practice tests will now feature real-time item scoring to allow a student immediate feedback on each item. The item score will show how many points the student earned for the response, how many points are possible for the item, and information about why the student’s response was correct or incorrect. The practice tests will not provide test scores (e.g., no scale score, no performance level) or item scoring information for test administrators. To obtain scores on half-length practice test items, users need to select the End Test icon on the top row of the screen. This icon only appears on screen when the user reaches the last question in the practice test session. Constructed response items are not eligible for scoring by computer. A scoring rubric is available in the Item Release Scoring Guide for each set of these practice items. For released constructed response items, educators can use the scoring rubrics as tools for providing feedback on student responses. 

The practice site can be accessed online by visiting:

Refer to the Practice Site Guidance Document for more information on the practice site and released test items.  

New Item Types Available for Online Tests

A pair of new item types, Inline Choice and Gap Match, are now available for online Ohio’s State Tests. These new item types will be eligible to appear as field test items during the 2017-2018 school year. Field test items do not count for or against a student’s overall score. To help teachers and students become familiar with these new item types, the practice test for each grade level or high school course feature an example of each new item type.


Beginning with the 2017-2018 school year, Ohio’s State Tests will use Desmos as the online calculator. The Ohio version of the Desmos calculators are available in the test portal through the practice tests and as a direct link.  These are the same calculators students will have available to them during online testing. 

Guidance for Desmos Calculators for High School

Guidance for Desmos Calculators for Grades 3-8

Scientific Calculator

Graphing Calculator

KRA Field Test

This year, kindergarten teachers play a key role in the development of the next version of the KRA with the inclusion of the embedded Fall 2017 Field Test. The one-time field test includes 4-5 new KRA items. The field test is being conducted to improve the assessment with new items, improved rubrics and streamlined scripts. The field test will be conducted and entered into the KReady system during the same administration window as the KRA.

Resident Educator Information

RESA Restructured

Beginning teachers with resident educator licenses take the Ohio Resident Educator Summative Assessment (RESA) in year three of the four-year program. These teachers become eligible for a professional teaching license once they pass RESA and complete four years of the program, including focused mentoring components and any local requirements. For those who are year 3 resident educators for the 2017-2018 school year, the overall assessment will be cut by 75 percent. Rather than four tasks, test takers will now complete one task in which they will submit one videotaped lesson and answer 10 to 12 related questions. Program participants will also work on some components previously in the RESA through local mentoring activities, including student assessment, communications, collaboration and professional growth. Effective with the 2018-2019 school year, resident educators will have the option of taking RESA in year 2, or they may wait until year 3. Taking the assessment in year 2 allows teachers to complete the state-level program requirements in two years and leaves only teaching and local activities for program years 3 and 4. 

Resident Educator Meetings

Resident Educator/Mentor matches for the 2017-2018 school year have been sent out to those involved in the program. If you have any questions regarding these matches please do not hesitate to contact me. No changes were made to prior matches unless requested by your building administrator. I will be holding beginning of the year meetings to discuss program expectations for both Resident Educators and their Mentor/Facilitators. It is very important that you attend these meetings. If you have a conflict, please contact both your building administrator and me. Meetings will be held as follows:

FJSHS RE 1 & 2 – Wednesday, September 6: 2:45-3:45pm

Elementary RE 1 & 2 – Wednesday, September 6: 4:00-5:00pm

FJSHS RE 3 – Monday, September 11: 2:45-3:45pm

Elementary RE 3 – Monday, September 11: 4:00-5:00pm

FJSHS RE 4 – Monday, September 18: 2:45-3:45pm

Elementary RE 4 – Monday, September 18: 4:00-5:00pm


Online Text Books & Resources

At this time, all staff and students with available online text resources should have logged in and set up accounts. If you have not yet done this and need help in the process, please let me know.

New Social Studies Curriculum

This year all social studies teachers have received new curriculum materials. While this is very exciting for these staff, I understand that often there are many questions associated with a new curriculum adoption. I am currently working with consultants to provide on-site professional development and will pass along details as soon as these become available. In the meantime, if you have questions, please send them my way, and I will do my best to try and find answers for you.

K-8 Gap Analysis - Mathematics 

The K-8 Gap Analysis allows teachers and district coordinators to analyze the extent their district curriculum and resources address the concepts and skills found in the Ohio’s Learning Standards for Mathematics (revised 2017). They can use the K-8 Gap Analysis to develop a plan for addressing gaps or overlaps in instruction as a result of the standards revision. These important considerations are the basis for rebuilding district-level curriculum that aligns to the revised 2017 mathematics standards in preparation for a completed transition in the 2018-2019 school year.

The K-8 Gap Analysis can be located here.

High School Course Checklist

The High School Standards by Course Checklist identifies standards recommended for instruction in Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2, Math 1, Math 2 and Math 3. The document contains additional columns that identify modeling standards using a () and plus standards using a (+). Educators can use plus standards to differentiate instruction at the local level. However, they will not appear on state tests. 

Science Resources

Over the last couple of years, the district has committed itself to get back on schedule for a curriculum review cycle. This year, the focus of the district will be on reviewing the needs of the science department PK-12. In order to ensure that a thorough review of our need and options is completed, this process will begin sometime in September. If you are interested in being a part of this review committee, please contact your building administrator.

4 Disciplines of Execution

Executive Summary

The 4 Disciplines of Execution (4DX) is a simple, repeatable, and proven formula for executing on your most important strategic priorities in the midst of the whirlwind. By following the 4 Disciplines –– focusing on the wildly important, acting on lead measures, keeping a compelling scoreboard, and creating a cadence of accountability –– leaders can produce breakthrough results. 4DX is not theory. It is a proven set of practices that have been tested and refined by hundreds of organizations and thousands of teams over many years. When a company or an individual adheres to these disciplines, they achieve superb results –– regardless of the goal. 4DX represents a new way of thinking and working that is essential to thriving in today's competitive climate.

The District’s “War”

Increase District Performance Index from 60.7% to 70% by 7/1/18

75 percent of the Achievement Component grade comes from the Performance Index score: the level of achievement for each student on each state test. The possible levels are Advanced, Accelerated, Proficient, Basic and Limited. Schools and districts receive points for every student’s level of achievement. The higher the student’s achievement level, the more points the school earns toward its Performance Index. This rewards schools and districts that improve the performance of all students, including the highest- and lowest performing students. Achievement also provides data that highlights the opportunities for and performance of gifted students in your district and school.



Safe Harbor no longer applies for the 2017-2018 school year regarding Value-Added use in OTES or OPES. Roster verification from Spring 2017 will be used to generate Fall 2017 Value-Added reports that must be used in 2017-2018 teacher evaluation. (Safe Harbor applied to the use of teacher value-added reports in evaluation for the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 school years). While no exact date has been released, Value-Added reports are generally released mid-October through the EVAAS system.

Student Learning Objective Timeline

Year Long Courses:

Part 1: Baseline & Trend Data, Student Population, Interval of Instruction, Standards & Content, Assessments

        Submission Deadline:

        September 1st

        Pre-Assessment Window:

        September 11th - 29th

Part 2: Growth Targets & Rationale for Growth Targets

        Submission Deadline: 

        October 13th

Part 3: Scoring Template

Post-Assessment Window:
Paper/Pencil - April 3rd - 20th
Computer - April 16th  - May 4th

Submission Deadline:
Paper/Pencil - May 1st
Computer - May 7th

Semester Courses:

Part 1: Baseline & Trend Data, Student Population, Interval of Instruction, Standards & Content, Assessments

         Submission Deadline:

         1st Sem. - September 1st

         2nd Sem. - January 19th

         Pre-Assessment Window:

         1st Sem. - September 11th -29th

         2nd Sem. - February 5th - 9th

Part 2: Growth Targets & Rationale for Growth Targets

         Submission Deadline:

         1st Sem. - October 13th

         2nd Sem. - February 23rd

Part 3: Scoring Template

         Post-Assessment Window:

         1st Sem. - December 11th -20th

         2nd Sem. - April 3rd - 20th

         Submission Deadline:

         1st Sem. - January 5th

         2nd Sem. - May 1st

Upcoming Dates

August 15-November 14: Early    Learning Assessment (PK)

August 21-23: Kindergarten Readiness Assessment (K)

September 11-29: NWEA MAP Testing

September 30: Reading Diagnostic Deadline (K-3)

October 11: PSAT Testing

October 23-27: Third Grade ELA OST

October 23-October 27: OGT (12)

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