Nebraska Archdiocese awards assessment contract

The Archdiocese of Omaha operates 75 Catholic schools, serving approximately 20,000 students of diverse ethnic and cultural heritages. Following a year of research by administrators from the rural and metro schools and members of the Archdiocese of Omaha Catholic Schools Office, the Archdiocese has awarded a Benchmark Assessment Program contract to CTB/McGraw-Hill. Beginning in October 2010, TerraNova, Third Edition (TerraNova 3) will be the standard assessment for 62 schools throughout Nebraska serving approximately 14,000 K-8 students.

“TerraNova 3 will be valuable in enabling our teachers to evaluate student performance and target instruction to meet student requirements,” said Monsignor James Gilg, Superintendent of schools in the Archdiocese of Omaha. “TerraNova’s corresponding Premier Reports, in particular, will give our teachers the data they need to track student performance and adjust instruction to best meet the needs of student and class.”

Using 2007 norms from an empirical study, TerraNova 3 gives teachers comparisons of student performance benchmarked with peers across the nation. Test results can also be used as a diagnostic tool, enabling teachers to identify and remediate areas of weakness by individual student or entire class, and develop targeted instructional practices.

The Archdiocese of Omaha will have the option to use Premier Reports to report TerraNova 3 assessment results. Premier Reports allows Archdiocesan staff to analyze data at the student, class, and school level, and use diagnostic information to inform remediation and instructional practices. It presents TerraNova 3 results in four categories: Home Reports, Class Reports, School Summary Reports, and District Summary Reports, with different reports generated for families and educators. The Home Report also includes a Translation Guide, in 10 languages, for non-English speaking families.

TerraNova 3 is available in several versions, including Multiple Assessments, which combines multiple-choice and constructed-response items, Complete Battery, with multiple-choice items only, and Survey, a streamlined version for use with limited testing times.

“We are committed to providing informative assessments and reporting solutions to Catholic schools across the country, and are pleased that the Archdiocese of Omaha has joined other Catholic schools using TerraNova 3 to improve student achievement,” said Ellen Haley, president of CTB/McGraw-Hill.“