New Florence District 4 Superintendent says reading scores top priority

FLORENCE, SC (WBTW) – The Florence School District Four Superintendent- Elect Dr. Rechel Anderson has new goals for the district—improving reading scores is at the top of her list.

Just three weeks ago the Florence School District Four board introduced Dr. Anderson—now she’s starting a new initiative to focus on reading. The concentration comes after the state took over two of the schools in the district, Brockington Elementary and Johnson Middle, last March.

Dr. Anderson hit the ground running, talking with teachers about ways to improve student test scores.

“We know we are not where we want to be and where we know that we can be,” says Dr. Anderson.

SC State Board of Education assessment of Florence School District 4

Last year’s test scores are not available yet but a 2015 assessment shows “students performed well below the state average in every subject and every grade.” School leaders reviewed the scores and looked at strengths and weaknesses in the district.

Anderson hopes to focus on reading and comprehension. Each student will have personalized learning tools on the computer.

“We are using smaller chunks of text,” says Dr. Anderson. “We will begin to increase those texts along and along the year. So that our students are building up that stamina so that they can endure when in May [and] they are taking the state assessment that they can endure the long passages.”

To encourage learning, student writings will soon cover the school hallways.

Dr. Anderson says her long-term goal to improve scores will also require help from parents and the community.

“We are taking every minute of our day to make sure that we are capitalizing on instruction, that we are celebrating those small victories,” explains Dr. Anderson.

Dr. Anderson says the district is also looking into a magnet program at the high school.