From the Superintendent: MCAs have a place in our work, but what we do is so much more


Dear Colleagues,

As you know, last week I was on a national stage and had to make a decision about my role here. It was a time of uncertainty for many, including me, but I want you to know that I made the decision I believe is best for our students and am eager to move our work forward.

As we move forward, we find that we have reached that time of year in which our schools begin annual MCA testing. Testing is one way we measure achievement, but it is only one way. In this season of state-mandated assessments, some staff and students may experience anxiety. This uneasiness can stem from the belief that a snapshot, captured in a few hours in the midst of a school year, can effectively evaluate our collective efforts. I do not believe in this single score myth.

Let me be clear, our students are more than a test score. MCA scores have their uses, but they are just one component of overall achievement.

This is why I am proud of our Teacher Development and Evaluation plan. We do not base the student achievement component only on the MCAs. Rather, we look at student growth on multiple measures of progress as determined in PLCs. It is a much more holistic approach that affirms our student achievement is made up of far more than a test score.

I don’t know many educators who get excited and come back to work every day so they can administer MCAs. What keeps us coming back are the exceptional learning experiences taking place in our classrooms. It is stories of those experiences that students share with you and me. The stories of how you encourage students to believe in themselves, to be risk takers. How you helped them fall in love with reading, or test their hypothesis in chemistry.

These are the experiences we all work so hard to provide, throughout the school year, that our students carry with them for the rest of their lives. 

MCAs have a place in our work, but what we do is so much more.

That is what keeps us coming back.

Your very proud superintendent,

Silva Signature


Valeria S. Silva