Student Achievement
We were pleased with the results of our efforts last year as PSSA and Keystone data released this summer showed significant improvement in student achievement. We look to build on this progress. PSSA Math: 3rd Grade 10.2% gain, 5th Grade 12.4% gain; PSSA  Reading: 3rd Grade 8.2% gain, 4th Grade 11% gain, 6th Grade 7.4% gain;  PSSA Writing: 5th Grade 25% gain!; Keystone Exams: All Algebra I students in grades 6-11 made a 13.4% gain, Biology 15.4% gain, Literature 5.1% gain. When compared to the State average for Keystone proficiency SCA is 13% higher in Algebra I, 13.7% higher in Biology, and 7.67% higher in Literature.
New Course Offerings
As mentioned in the article below, Middle School students will have a new elective entitled STEM.  This course integrates Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Students will learn about technology and its impact on society.  Students will be guided by systematic problem-solving models (the Systems Model and the Technological Problem Solving Method) to complete STEM projects.  AutoCad will be used for all drawings and product ideas.  GPS/GIS software along with Trimble GPS units will be used to mark points and create a map.  Students will also learn about safety and how to safely create products using both metal and wood working tools and machines.
This year, grade 7 will model the schedule of grades 5 and 6 in regards to English Language Arts.   The schedule has been changed to include a double period of English Language Arts.  The curriculum will integrate reading, grammar and writing in accordance with the new PA Core Standards. 
Third and fourth grades are now departmentalized, with students receiving math and science instruction from one of their teachers and then switching to receive ELA instruction from another of their grade level teachers.
Reading Curriculum - Aligning to the PA Core Standards
Our K-12 Reading and English teachers have been busy this summer working on updating their curriculum to align to the newer, more rigorous Pennsylvania Core Standards (PCS). The District will be using PDE Modules that serve as a “roadmap” for each grade level. The Modules incorporate the new PCS English-Language Arts (ELA) standards into “units” or “themes” that combine essential reading, phonics, grammar, and writing skills together for each level.  
Lesson Planning
Teachers will use Sapphire, the student information system introduced last year, to write and submit their lesson plans. All teachers will seek to embed additional higher order and extended thinking skills into their lessons. Students can expect to be involved in engaging activities which utilize technology, peer collaboration and project-based learning, all of which have been linked to a deeper understanding of concepts and retention.
Math- Aligning to the PA Core Standards
The District’s K-8 Math program will also experience change.  EveryDay Math (EDM) will continue to be used in grades K-5 however the program has been updated to align to the new standards. The updates provide more “hands-on” learning and problem solving activities. Students in kindergarten through second grade will start the year with the new material, while the company will release grades 3-5 updates, mid-year.
Students in grades 6-8 will be using the recently released CMP4 version of the District’s Connected Math program. Connected Math has been a staple of Southern Columbia Area’s Middle School Math curriculum for the past decade. The CMP4 upgrade includes an extensive array of online, standards-aligned learning activities, drill and practice, and assessments.
RtII Efforts Will Continue
All schools will continue their RtII (Response to Instruction and Intervention) initiatives introduced last school year. RtII provides each student intervention and/or enrichment activities based on their needs.  Benchmark assessments will be administered to the students throughout the year to determine this.

Special Features

An anonymous way for you to submit a tip to your school is now available. You do not need to share your name, phone number or anything unless you want to.  You can submit a tip three ways: online, by making a phone call, or by using the Safe2Say Something App. What types of things should you report? If it makes you uncomfortable, submit a tip.Learn More

Parents and other school community members are encouraged to share their viewpoints about key educational issues, particularly those concerning digital learning and the use of technology to support future ready schools, by participating in the Speak Up Project for Digital Learning, facilitated by Project Tomorrow.  The annual national research project gives education stakeholders the opportunity to ensure their voice is heard not only at Southern Columbia, but at the state and national level as findings are summarized aLearn More