Building a Successful Foundation by Playing, Learning, and Preparing for Tomorrow
Six of the 13 years of your child’s primary education are spent in elementary school. During this critical developmental stage, Clear Creek Independent School District provides your child with a safe place to develop a true love of learning while establishing critical thinking, problem-solving, and time management skills in our 27 elementary school campuses. The skillsets learned paired with fundamental knowledge development help lay a foundation for a bright future.
The following information serves as a resources center to learn more about the elementary curriculum, standards-based grading, magnet programs, school activities, and more.
Starting in first grade, your child transitions to classroom-based learning taught by a grade-level teacher. Within each classroom, students learn as a collective group, in small groups, and independently. Your child will learn using the modeling method where a teacher uses outward communication to prompt thought among the students. The mindset of “I do (teacher prompt). We do (group/small group activity). You do (independent work).” is present throughout subject instruction. Teachers then use small group instruction to divide children based on knowledge level or understanding and modify activities by the level.
In addition to the core curriculum of math, science, and language arts, students participate in art, music, and physical education. After school, your child can participate in after-school clubs or receive tutoring support. Each elementary school campus is staffed with a full-time registered nurse, librarian, and counselor. The on-campus Counselor is dedicated to the social and emotional learning of all students. Development is facilitated through character meetings to teach core values and offer continued support within the classroom.
CCISD believes the key to early childhood success includes a standards-based grading method. This method allows all elementary school students to know exactly what is expected in each content area throughout the course of the year's learning. It also provides parents with a detailed outline of learning expectations and student progress within those expectations and timeframe. In the standards-based grading system, both students and parents are aware of clear learning outcomes and the pace for expected mastery of each grade level target.
Grades on traditional report cards often reflected a combination of academic progress, work habits, and participation. Standards-based grading solely reflects progress on priority topic targets based on a scale of one-four. These levels do not equate to an A-F grading scale.
The grade-level target for each learning standard is a three. When a three is earned, the student has met the grade-level expectations for that topic. While some topics have expectations for mastery early in the year, many of the topics do not have mastery expectations until the end of the school year. It is normal for students to advance from one to three as they develop greater proficiency of the standard. A student who achieves a level three on all topics on the report card by the end of the year has mastered all grade-level expectations. You will likely see more ones early in the year and threes later reflecting the necessary progression and mastery level of the skills. At level four, a student demonstrates understanding and performance beyond expected proficiency and has exceeded the standards. Level four is challenging and achieved less frequently.
- Learning targets are clearly defined and aligned with state standards.
- Students are offered multiple opportunities and ways through which to demonstrate proficiency
- Students monitor their own progress toward the achievement of specified targets
- Specific feedback on progress helps build self-esteem, pride, and motivation for students
- Report card grades are less mysterious and have more meaning
- Parents are empowered to increase their child's confidence and help their students set goals
- Parents know in what areas their child needs more support
- Parents are aware of exactly what their child knows, is able to do, and the next steps for progress
- Teachers know exactly where students stand in their progress toward learning targets and what support needs to be provided
- Teachers of the same courses have aligned expectations and standards
- Assessment results help teachers determine when students need extra help and when they need more challenging work
To aid in the understanding of the standards-based grading system, CCISD provides parent guides by grade level for the school year. The guides outline the characteristics of a successful learner, present the topics and targets by subject, and suggest activities for at-home curriculum reinforcement. Families are encouraged to download the applicable grade level and follow their students learning path throughout the school year using these guides.
Credit By Examination
Clear Creek ISD offers Credit by Examination (CBE) for grade-level acceleration in accordance with Texas State Board of Education rules and District policy. The purpose of Credit by Exam is to allow a student to accelerate and earn credit without prior formal instruction in that grade.
CCISD offers four opportunities throughout the year for students to gain credit by examination. Exams are available for Kindergarten acceleration (summer only) and all grade levels 1-8 in accordance with the Texas State Board of Education rules and District policy.