Some days are just crazier than others

And yesterday was one of those days!

At 7:20 Jamie and Fritz left for the testing location for Fritz’s English II End of Course exam (insert rant about how stupid standardized tests are and how annoyed I am that they spent the last two months preparing for this stupid high stakes must pass in order to graduate from high school test).

At 8:30 Jamie took Nicholas and Joel upstairs when Noah’s ECI therapist got here. Noah has a tendency to let the other two boys do everything for him so we need to keep them separated during those visits. Noah did amazing this time. He spent the entire 45 minutes happily playing with playdough and parroted some words and even said a few things spontaneously.

At 9:45 Adrian texted asking if he took his Ritalin (answer: no, his father forgot to put it out for him). He said he really needed it (something about shooting the ceiling… no idea) so I headed to his school to give it to him and then immediately went to the elementary school to pick up Anthony.

At 10:15 Fritz let us know he was done with his end of course. This meant he needed to be picked up but I had The Beast at the elementary school and Jamie couldn’t leave the twinplets. So he texted Cameron (who happens to live near the testing location) and he was so kind as to drop everything and pick Fritz up and even got him Sonic on the way home.

Meanwhile, I picked Anthony up at 10:20 and we sat in The Beast in the school parking lot and did his med check with his psychiatrist right there in the van. We’re adding a fast acting ADHD medication dose after lunch for him. Medication is making SUCH a difference for him and hopefully that’ll take care of the afternoon impulsiveness and behavior issues. Mornings have been excellent and learning is finally happening.

Of course adding the after lunch dose means paperwork and so when I took Anthony back into school at 11, I went to the clinic (my second school nurse’s office of the day since that’s where medication must be given even when administered by the parent) and got the form for the psychiatrist to fill out. While I was in there Mayci saw me through the window so she popped in to ask if I could take her Fiesta Parade float home with me (of course) and as I left Zeke was lining up with his class outside the cafeteria so I ended up seeing all three of my elementary schoolers this morning.

I got home and by 11:15 I had filled out and scanned the medication administration form and emailed it to the psychiatrist to sign. Right after I sent that, they emailed me the thing to sign that tells about possible side effects of the medicine so I got that signed and emailed back (she doesn’t send any new medications to the pharmacy until that’s been signed).

Side Note: Tiny Scanner is the best app… I got it to turn papers we filled out into pdfs way back when we were applying to be foster parents and I still use it quite regularly.

So all of that happened before noon after which we had a bit of a break from all the crazy, though it was a busy evening, too. Right after school Zeke had his weekly ballet/tap class. After dinner, we got the kids ready for bed and everybody except Fritz got in The Beast to take Adrian to his 8th grade dance. Fritz had seminary at church at the same time, but he always walks so that was no different for him.

Adrian’s STAAR Results

This year STAAR tests don’t really count. They were mostly for the schools to see how they did with remote/hybrid learning. We got Adrian’s results last week and he did so well. If they had counted, he would’ve passed all of them. Masters, Meets, and Approaches are passing scores while Did Not Meet is a failing score (in normal years).

In 7th grade reading he got Masters with a raw score of 1800. He scored in the 88th percentile. The state average was 1631, the district average was 1644, and the campus average was 1667 which are all Approaches Grade Level. His Lexile level is 1335 putting him well above the expected 7th grade reading level (end of 10th to 12th grade reading level).

7th grade writing I was concerned about for him. He was just diagnosed with dysgraphia and while he had accomodations (mainly he did the test on the computer rather than pencil and paper), writing is definitely not his strong suit. His ELAR teacher got some great work out of him, but not quite what I’d expect from a 7th grader. So when I saw he got Approaches Grade Level in writing I was so excited for him. His raw score was 3662 which is in the 44th percentile. The state average was 3706, the district average was 3728, and the campus average was 3918, which are all also in Approaches. He did the worst in composition and the best in editing. The composition score didn’t surprise me at all, but the editing score definitely did. He’s really worked hard this year in ELAR and it shows.

In 8th grade math he got Masters with a raw score of 1896. He score in the 92nd percentile. The state average was 1647 and the district average was 1658, both in Approaches Grade Level, and the campus average was 1730 which is in Meets Grade Level. His quantile level was 1230Q which is well above the expected level for 8th graders. (He took the 8th grade math STAAR in 7th grade because he was in honors math which is the same as regular 8th grade math. This puts him on the path of taking Algebra I next year in 8th grade.)

Even though I don’t think standardized tests are truly necessary, it is nice to have proof that all those years of homeschooling accomplished something and prepared him well for public school!

Fritz’s End of Course Results

No surprise Fritz passed all three of the STAAR end of course exams he had to take. They can get Did Not Meet Grade Level, Approaches Grade Level, Meets Grade Level, and Masters Grade Level.

He got Meets Grade Level for Algebra I with the 44th percentile. The state, district, and campus averages were all in Approaches Grade Level. His score was 113 above the state average, 126 above the district average, and 297 above the campus average. His quantile score grade level equivalent is late 9th grade to early 10th grade, so right on target.

He got Masters Grade Level in Biology with the 96th percentile. He really enjoyed his biology class this year and although he has no intention of going into a career related to biology, he clearly does well in the subject (probably helps that biology is my favorite science so we covered it a LOT when we were homeschooling). The campus average was also Masters Grade Level, but the state and district averages were both Meets Grade Level. His score was 395 higher than the campus average, 856 above the district average, and 1,027 above the state average. (This test took him a whopping 45 minutes to complete, by the way.)

He got Meets Grade Level for English I with the 71st percentile. The state, district, and campus averages were also all in Meets Grade Level (just barely for the state average). His score was 216 lower than the campus average, 134 above the district average, and 267 above the state average. His Lexile reading level put him at first year of college (well above the expected range for a 9th grader and even outside the expected range for a 10th grader).

He’s happy he passed the tests mainly because it means he doesn’t have to retake them and only has to take two more EOC exams before graduating high school. I like seeing his scores because it means homeschooling was successful and I did a good job preparing him for high school.

Adrian Brag

This morning I had a conference call to finalize Adrian’s 504 for dysgraphia and ADHD and I must brag a little. This is, of course, his first year in public school since halfway through kindergarten. He still loves it as much as he did at the beginning of the year.

The 504 guy at his middle school said the last quarter kids usually slack off a bit, but Adrian is finishing the year very strong with an 88 in ELAR, an 89 in Spanish, and the rest A’s. In addition he said they’ve already gotten the scores from the STAAR reading and math tests that were done on the computer (Adrian’s were due to accomodations that they put in place even before the 504 was finalized). Adrian scored Masters (highest) in both his 7th grade reading and 8th grade math (pre-algebra) STAARs.

He said we should be very proud of our son. Indeed we are.

Such a waste of time

Wednesday and Thursday last week Fritz had to go to the high school to take his algebra I and biology end of course exams. Instead of letting kids go home as soon as they were done, they made them sit in the classroom until dismissal at 3:25.

They got there at 9 and so by the time the exams were started it was around 9:30. Fritz finished his algebra I exam at 11. He only took 45 minutes to complete the biology exam. And then he had to just sit there (luckily they did allow them to bring a book to read) for hours.

And this is why he is not a fan of public school. So. Much. Wasted. Time.