March 10, 2011 at 9:06 a.m.

AmeriCorps math helpers work with elementary schools

AmeriCorps math helpers work with elementary schools
AmeriCorps math helpers work with elementary schools

Lakeside and Taylors Falls Elementary Schools, last fall, were introduced to a new program called "Minnesota Math Corps." It is a program designed to help Minnesota students become proficient in math by the end of eighth grade. This program trains and places AmeriCorps members in schools to work with students who are in need of extra help with math. The Internal Coach at Lakeside is Peg Killeen and two AmeriCorps members are Lora Kienberger and Steve Wikstrom.

Minnesota Math Corps started three years ago in the St. Cloud School District in partnership with St. Cloud State University. Kienberger and Wikstrom provide small group tutoring in prescribed mathematics interventions and conduct regular progress monitoring and assessments. "Lakeside principal Warren Retzlaff said, their goal is to ensure each student is on track toward proficiency in the necessary math skills. Of the students being served by this program who were at risk, half of them passed the state proficiency exam in 2010. Also, nearly 70 percent of Math Corps students met or exceeded their growth targets."

During this 2010-2011 school year, the Math Corps will be serving students in geographic areas: St. Cloud, St. Paul, and East Centeral Minnesota (Chisago Lakes Lakeside and Taylors Falls Elementary Schools), North Branch and Rush City. "Thanks to the hard work of both Lora and Steve, Lakeside has a special group of fourth and fifth graders achieving higher math scores. This program is making a difference in the lives of these chldren," concluded Retzlaff.


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