Utkal International School serves students in grades K-6. Our specialized curriculum, combined with small classes and multi-sensory teaching techniques, guides students towards academic and life-long success.
At a glance, Utkal International School looks a lot like other schools, and some traditional approaches to learning and assessment are an important part of the daily routine. In the Lower School, material is mastered through recitation, practice, and activity-based, hands-on learning. At the same time, however, through very non-traditional, “metacognitive” approaches, students are taught to understand and appreciate how they learn, assemble, and employ the tools they need to bridge gaps between their potential and their skills.
Our goal is to help each Utkal student achieve:
- Mastery in all academic areas
- Problem-solving and critical thinking proficiency
- Creativity and healthy self-expression
- Self-esteem, contentment and pride in oneself
- Friendship/social skills and respect for others
- Leadership and teamwork ability
- Desire and appreciation for learning that will last a lifetime
For those who learn differently, one-size-fits-all tests and assignments rarely demonstrate what a student truly knows. At Utkal, students are encouraged to demonstrate their knowledge in many ways – writing, oral recitation, hands-on approaches, etc.
The overall success of their development is then best measured through frequent, standardized assessments combined with observational measurements. At the Lower School, although students do not receive letter grades, student progress is measured and communicated to parents on a daily, weekly, and annual basis:
Teachers monitor and document student learning daily. Parents are notified of developments and challenges through regular telephone conversations, e-mail and snail-mailings. If at any time it becomes clear that a student will benefit academically from a different ability group, there is an immediate re-assignment to a group more suited to that student’s needs, which is then communicated to parents.
Teachers monitor students’ progress weekly using standardized measures of oral reading fluency, math facts, and written expression. The results are discussed with students, graphed and made available to parents quarterly.
Students receive mid-year and end-of-year comprehensive evaluations in academic and social development. Parents are informed of these findings through written achievement reports.
Teachers and parents meet each November to discuss goals and strategies used to advance academic and social skills. In March, teachers and parents review the year-end achievement report and assess student progress toward stated goals.
Annually, each student in Grades 3-6 completes the NWEA MAP (Northwest Evaluation Association Measures of Academic Progress).
Our careful approach to monitoring students and gathering data provides opportunities for teachers to adjust their teaching strategies, integrate support, and otherwise personalize the delivery of curriculum. The result is that teachers and parents receive a 360-degree perspective from which to evaluate a child’s progress and growth.
Data and experience indicate that, after just one year, students who successfully complete the Utkal International School program are more successful academically and socially than they were prior to enrolling in the school.