Academics

Our core mission at Whittier is to ensure that every child receives a high-quality academic and social-emotional foundation so they are successful both in school and in life. Academically, this means an emphasis on rigorous academics in every subject area: reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies and science.
Our teachers are committed to providing high-quality instruction. Teachers and instructional coaches work together to analyze Arizona’s College and Career Readiness Standards and carefully plan instruction for students. We also know our job is not just to teach; it is to ensure students learn. In addition to classroom checks for understanding and quizzes, we regularly assess students every 15-20 instructional days through a Common Formative Assessment (CFA). The purpose of this assessment is two-fold: 1) to reflect on the effectiveness of our instruction and guide the focus of teacher professional development and 2) to target re-teaching and enrichment based on student results. We use our CFA results throughout the year to continually push students toward meeting or exceeding grade level expectations.

At Whittier, we believe ALL students are capable of success and ALL students can learn. We also know, however, students learn in different ways and at different speeds. To accommodate this, we have intervention time built into the school day for all grade levels. During this time, students work in small groups with a teacher, instructional interventionist, instructional assistant, peers, or on a computer-based program to target a skill with which they need additional practice. If a student is on course with all the skills taught up to a given point in the year, he or she will work in an enrichment group during intervention time. Enrichment groups could focus on project-based learning, higher-level application, or advancement to new skills. The goal is to ensure ALL students continue to be pushed to higher academic levels.

If you have questions about your child’s academic progress or standing, please do not hesitate to reach out to his or her teacher. In addition to regularly scheduled parent-teacher conferences, teachers are always willing to communicate via phone, email, or in person to work with you on ensuring high levels of academic success for your child.