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Peru Central reviews curriculum for potential improvements

PERU - The Peru Central School District has been audited - by itself.

Though audits are traditionally focused on fiscal matters, the school district recently completed an internal audit of its own curriculum to see what areas, if any, were in need of improvement.

According to superintendent A. Paul Scott, the intent of the process was to "promote collaborative, fact-based examination of instructional materials, programs and practices, to help strengthen student achievement and bolster professional practice."

During the past two school years, the district's faculty and administrators have engaged with Scott in a collaborative examination of practices and protocols associated with curriculum audits nationwide. This school year, the process examined Peru Middle School's social studies programs and their connection to the elementary and high school levels.

Throughout the month of February, a three-member curriculum audit team of experienced faculty gathered, sorted and examined extensive sets of program data about the curriculum as it is delivered, written and assessed within the district. The data collected included classroom activities, worksheets and projects; staffing patterns; student enrollment; curriculum guides, teacher-made tests and other papers photocopied and distributed to students.

The curriculum audit team then identified and described any notable gaps between expectations for the delivered, written and assessed curriculum and what was actually found.

"The curriculum audit team offered what I view as practical, research-based strategies to promote continued gains in student achievement and success in the social studies program," said Scott.

An executive summary of the audit was prepared, containing 14 fact-based findings, five recommendations to be viewed as areas for consideration and one commendation, said Scott.

The internal audit found the majority of documents provided to seventh grade students during a two-week period "were closely linked with state standards and the district curriculum" and clearly demonstrated "collaborative communications and collaborative planning between teachers at each grade level," said Scott.

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