Services To Students
Academic Intervention Services
In an effort to allow all students to meet the standards as efficiently as possible, a system of mandated academic intervention has been put into place at all levels. Eligibility criteria for these services include: failing a Regents examination, scoring a (1) or a (2) on New York State 8th grade assessments, along with a teacher's recommendation. Academic intervention services can include enrollment in classes which are significantly smaller than average, or placement in an alternate-day remedial program which is non-credit bearing. Enrollment in these classes is mandatory and cannot be waived. Students are released from AIS programs based on re-testing or teacher recommendation.
To support 9th-graders who are experiencing academic difficulties in transitioning into the high school curriculum, the daily AIS Transition Program includes remedial reading, reading in the content areas, study skills, writing, science support, and/or math lab as needed.
Before/After School Hours
Each teacher spends at least one hour per week, on a regularly scheduled morning or afternoon, providing extra help for students. Schedules and rooms are posted in all classrooms. Additional help may be arranged with the teacher on an individual basis.
A list of teacher voice mail numbers is also posted on the district website: Voice Mail LIst, and is published in Tiger Tales each fall.
Amherst Central High School has a program of testing designed to obtain information to identify students in need of remedial services and to help those students be successful academically and prepared for post-secondary life.
Some of these tests include:
Group Reading Assessment and Diagnostic Evaluation (G.R.A.D.E)
The DRP is given primarily to 9th-grade students who have been identified as needing remedial services, current remedial readers, and new entrants to the district. This test assists in the accurate placement of students at appropriate course levels.
Diagnostic Testing (QRI-V)
A select group of tests are used to diagnose reading disabilities on an individual basis. For example, the QRI-V is an individually administered informal reading inventory designed to provide information about (1) conditions under which students can identify words and comprehend text successfully, and (2) conditions that appear to result in unsuccessful word identification, decoding, and/or comprehension.
The reading program at the High School is comprised of two parts:
(1) Remedial reading is provided through the elective course Reading and Study Skills. Students from grades 9-12 receive remediation every other day through group instruction.
(2) A classroom-centered approach is provided primarily through the English classes.
Students new to our school district, as well as students who scored below three in the 8th grade ELA, take the G.R.A.D.E Placement test. Students who score below grade level as a general test score may be eligible for the remedial reading program at ACHS. Additionally, academic teachers often refer pupils who exhibit reading deficiencies and/or who lack basic study skills to the Reading Specialist for testing and diagnosis.
Remedial reading services are provided for students whose reading weaknesses are significant enough to require regular reading instruction. Such students work in a group setting of eight or fewer students. To meet the needs of these identified learners, ongoing assessment and diagnosis are integral components of the program.
Instructional methods vary to meet the academic needs of these students.
The Reading Specialist works with both the English and Special Education Departments to provide reading and writing instruction in the classroom setting, emphasizing vocabulary development, reading comprehension, and study skill strategies. A variety of teaching techniques is utilized to meet the needs of these learners.
At the 10th grade Regents and Honors levels, one day a week is set aside for a “skills” class stressing vocabulary development and reading comprehension. Furthermore, students work on skills essential for the Regents exams in English and other standardized tests such as the PSAT and SAT.
English as a New Language services are available for students who have Limited English Proficiency (LEP) due to either foreign birth or ancestry. LEP students are identified upon entry into the district by either the LAB-R English Language Assessment or based upon their scores on the New York State ENL assessment, which is given in NYS public schools each spring. The purpose of this course is to develop the students’ ability to use English proficiently within the standard conventions of its spoken and written forms. Students either take ESL courses in lieu of another English course or simultaneously with another English course, depending upon their proficiency level.