Research hints at reading improvement in Penn Yan

Gwen Chamberlain

A former teacher’s doctoral research project which focused on a Penn Yan school reading program seems to point to positive results from the program.

Colleen Ribble reported on her research at the July 22 school board meeting. In herresearch, she looked at reading scores dating back to 1971 and found that in all those years, there was just one year when boys outscored girls on reading assessments.

She focused her research on the Waterford Early Reading Program used by the school district and found that there is a statistically significant difference in reading achievement after the program is used.

Her research also revealed that the gender gap in reading achievement may become smaller with the use of the program.

“The information was pretty positive about what you’re doing,” she told the school board.

Ribble who retired from Penn Yan Elementary in 2004 has been an assistant professor of education at Keuka College since 2005. She will be an assistant professor of education at Mansfield University this fall.

Other business on the board’s agenda July 22 included:

• Comments: Board member Anita Maroscher commented on recent news about the state comptroller’s office audit of the Wayne Finger Lakes BOCES financial records. “When you read about it, it sounds like they did a horrible thing. They were trying to plan over the next several years, but they are limited to what they can do.”

The audit said the BOCES board improperly transferred funds to reserve funds. Board member Nancy Scher, who is the Penn Yan district’s representative to the BOCES board, said from what she’s learned, another BOCES district has been criticized for the same move.

• Appointments: President Jeff Morehouse made several board committee appointments. The board also appointed several extracurricular advisor and coaching positions.

• Textbooks: Following extensive comments by Board member Mike Van Wormer, the board approved the purchase of four sets textbooks at a total cost of $51,854.

•  Donation: Accepted a $600 donation from Trombley Tire & Auto for the Grandma Shirley Award.

• Change Issues: The board approved change orders for $36,845 for additional drainage for the media wing on Court Street and for $27,000 for additional data in computer room 222 and business room 202.