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Riverview principal uses military theme to improve test scores

Shelby County Schools Superintendent Dorsey Hopson II talks academic goals with Riverview K-8 principal Rosalind Martin on the first day back to school Monday.  Martin said her school's theme this year is "Bootcamp to Improve Literacy."  Martin and her staff will wear their military gear each Monday during the school year.
Shelby County Schools Superintendent Dorsey Hopson II talks academic goals with Riverview K-8 principal Rosalind Martin on the first day back to school Monday. Martin said her school's theme this year is "Bootcamp to Improve Literacy." Martin and her staff will wear their military gear each Monday during the school year.
Tajuana Cheshier/Chalkbeat TN

This is the second time that Riverview principal Rosalind Martin has used the theme “Bootcamp to Improve Student Literacy.”

The first school where she tried out the theme was Georgian Hills Middle, a school that had such low test scores that it had to undergo a reorganization of its teaching staff and administration.

When she left, she said the school was on the Tennessee Department of Education’s Reward List, which recognizes schools for exceeding their goals in achievement and/or student growth.

As part of the bootcamp at Riverview, teachers will dress in military camouflage every Monday throughout the year. Students will also get an hour of daily tutoring in their weak areas.

Riverview, which is a part of the Innovation Zone, better known as the I-Zone, has more autonomy than traditional public schools.

They have a longer school day, single-gender classrooms and mandatory parental involvement.

This school year is Martin’s second at Riverview and she says the school is well on its way to meeting the state’s goal to be in top 25 percent of schools by 2018.

“We’ve moved up 70 slots,” said Martin referring to the school’s current status on the state list for student achievement and growth.

Martin, an educator for 27 years, said teachers will assess students’ learning styles beginning this Friday.

“Student growth will be measured weekly because we want to know how they’re doing,” she said.

Contact Tajuana Cheshier at tcheshier@chalkbeat.org and (901) 730-4013.

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