The Curricula, instruction, and assessment approach at Mercy is anchored in the school’s mission to provide all students with the opportunities to reach full potential academically, physically, socially, emotionally, and spiritually. Teachers at Mercy incorporate daily opportunities for students at all levels to think critically, question concepts, collaborate effectively, creatively problem solve with their peers, and lead with innovative 21st century skills.
As a member of the Archdiocese of Washington, Mercy is guided by their rigorous standards that promote academic challenges for all students and reflect a continuum of learning from pre-kindergarten to eighth grade. Each grade level has developmentally appropriate expectations. Furthermore, teachers at Mercy have a strong understanding of the vertical alignment of these standards in order to extend the learning of the many students who are performing above grade level.
Testing and Technology Integration
The Scantron Performance Series (Scantron) is an online standardized testing system used at Mercy. Scantron is a research-based, criterion-referenced, computer-adaptive test that enables teachers to identify the instructional level of students in reading and math through immediate results, and then to access standards-based reports including suggested learning objectives for each student.
“Archdiocese of Washington Catholic schools use standardized tests to measure how well students master the concepts and skills being taught. These assessment tools also compare our students’ scores to others across the country. We use a computerized assessment tool that offers distinct advantages for teachers, parents, administrators and students—including students with special needs.”
The Scantron Performance Series
- Reduces testing time by more than half and avoids test-taker fatigue
- Adjusts to each student’s ability
- Provides valuable information quickly so teachers can adapt instruction as needed
- Produces easy-to-read, detailed reports
- Records progress over time to aid in making decisions about tutoring, enrichment and remediation programs that may benefit each student
We also administer a Faith Knowledge Assessment in April that measures your child’s knowledge of the concepts and principles of the Catholic faith taught in our daily religion classes.
Reporting to Parents
Parents receive testing reports in a clear and simple format. The information includes:
- Ranking with peers in a national norm group
- Ability independent of grade level
- Projected performance on grade level performance standards
- Improvement in performance over time
- Level of reading on the Lexile Scale that helps students select appropriate books at libraries and/or bookstores
2018-2019 Scantron and Scantron PARCC Comparisons
Standardized testing is one of the many tools the Archdiocese of Washington Catholic schools used to measure our students' mastery of important concepts and skills. The primary purpose of testing is to improve students' learning and teachers' teaching by identifying both strengths and areas of improvement. Test scores are an important measure of performance, but they cannot and should not be the sole criteria upon which a family decides which Catholic school best fits their unique circumstances.
Our Lady of Mercy provides students and staff with a technology-rich environment enabling effective teaching, interactive learning, technology and media literacy, and global connectedness. Technology is naturally incorporated into all areas of the curriculum. Through the use of interactive displays, digital cameras, online textbooks, and one-to-one devices, classroom instruction is interactive, engaging and meets the needs of many learning styles. We believe that confidence in emergent technologies develops independent learners.
Digital Citizenship and Internet Safety
“The Internet can help us to be better citizens. Access to digital networks entails a responsibility for our neighbour whom we do not see but who is nonetheless real and has a dignity which must be respected. The Internet can be used wisely to build a society which is healthy and open to sharing. This is a gift of God which involves a great responsibility. . .the encounter between communication and mercy will be fruitful to the degree that it generates a closeness which cares, comforts, heals, accompanies and celebrates.” - Pope Francis on the 50th World Communications Day
Our Lady of Mercy’s technology program uses The International Society for Technology Education (ISTE) Standards as its framework for professional development and student instruction. A key component of the student, teacher, and administrator standards is digital citizenship. Mercy’s Digital Citizenship and Internet Safety Program is aligned with ADW 3212 Policy Acceptable Use of Technology and the Mercy School Student and Teacher Handbooks.
A MERCY GRADUATE . . .
- demonstrates and lives the teachings of the Catholic faith
- has a solid academic foundation and embraces an independent responsibility for learning
- is a thoughtful leader and a collaborative teammate
- desires to serve others and become involved in their community
- demonstrates confidence and poise in public speaking
- welcomes and nurtures all people with mercy - models "The Mercy Way"