JASPER - Central Hamilton Elementary School is celebrating the outstanding performance of CHE fourth grade students on the writing portion of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT).

On February 12, 2003 students in grades 4, 8 and 10 all over the state took the writing portion of the FCAT.

Five fourth grade students at Central Hamilton Elementary received the highest possible score, a 6, on this year's FCAT Writing Assessment.

These students were Kevin Chen, Anthony Ingram, William Hughes, Jeffrey Monds and Lacee Smith. Many other students received grades of 3 and above. Grades are reported in half point increments.

"Our students, staff, and parents have all worked very hard on specific writing skills," said CHE Principal, Philip H. Pinello. "All of the CHE family is proud of their accomplishments."

Concerning the FCAT, students in Grades 4, 8, and 10 write an essay for an assigned topic. This type of writing assessment is called "demand writing." Demand writing assessments are completed within a designated time period, typically 45 minutes, and involve the scoring of student responses to assigned topics.

The assessment is designed to measure students' proficiency in writing responses to assigned topics within a designated testing period. Students are required to generate and develop the ideas that form the basis for their written responses.

Students in Grade 4 write either an expository or narrative essay. Each student essay is scored holistically by at least two trained readers. The highest score a student can receive is 6 points. Student writings are evaluated on content, details provided, sequential order, grammar, punctuation and whether or not the student's writing remained focused upon topic provided.

Central Hamilton Elementary has continued to focus upon enhancing student writing throughout the school year. With the success of these students and many others, CHE fourth grade teachers, David Law, Heather Laemmle and Jacqueline Houston are pleased with the writing performance exhibited by their students.

"We are very proud of our students. They worked extremely hard throughout the school year on their writing, and now their hard work has paid off," said fourth grade teacher Heather Laemmle. "Teachers began building upon the writing skills of their students early in the school year. Students wrote on a daily basis, with writings evaluated by teachers and their peers.

FCAT scores in Reading and Mathematics have not been received in the district as of press time. School officials report that the third and twelfth grade scores should be received this week.

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