DeLaSalle Charter School teachers have a new assignment to improve student achievement

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - DeLaSalle Charter School students will notice a difference when the new school year begins on Monday.

Teachers are being trained to use Differential Instruction.

"It's basically evaluating a child's knowledge, style of learning and interests and modifying instruction based on the student's needs and interests," explained Mary Ghasemi, a teacher at DeLaSalle.

Teachers will be asking students more questions about their interests and learning styles. They’ll then create lesson plans to each individual student.

DeLaSalle is the only charter high school in Kansas City serving at risk students from KC’s urban core. Many students arrive at the school with below grade-level skills.

Despite their challenges, DeLaSalle students are still tested using the same tests and scoring of every student in the state.

"Our test scores are low, but we fall in the same mid-range as other low-performing schools,” Mark

Williamson, DeLaSalle Executive Director explained.

"We like to measure individual students’ progress," he added.

Last year, students who attended DeLaSalle for one year improved their math and reading scores one and a half grade levels in that year.

Williamson explained small class sizes will help teachers implement Differential Instruction.

UMKC is the sponsoring institution for DeLaSalle. UMKC educators will provide training and evaluate teachers in the classroom to help teachers implement the program. 

DeLaSalle educators hope the new teaching method will improve student achievement and test-scores.

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