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Poarch partners with ECMS

By By Adam Prestridge
The Poarch Band of Creek Indians is doing its part to help educate the students of Atmore.
Last week, Poarch education executive director Sandra Hiebert announced that the Tribe had partnered with Escambia County Middle School to assist in the purchase of TestTrax, a tracking system used to track the grades and progress of students, teachers and classes as related to standardized tests. The tests that will be tracked by the Atlanta-based company include the Criterion Reference Test (CRT), Alabama Reading and Math Test (ARMT) and Stanford Achievement Test (STAT 10).
TestTrax can also track sub-groups. Hiebert said the Tribe felt like paying for the school’s $6,000 yearly fee would be a good investment because it would give them access to test data on how children of Indian descent are performing to ensure that they are making the grade.
ECMS principal Zickeyous Byrd said if it had not been for the Tribe, he would have had no choice but to forgo using the program.
Byrd said that once the students take the tests, the teachers would scan the tests and email them to TestTrax, which then compiles the data for the school. The staff can then log onto a Web site for viewing the charts and graphs produced, which can also be printed.
In addition to the TestTrax software, Poarch also purchased two Elmo Projectors with a total price tag of $3,000, which was made available through Title 7 grant funds. The projectors will be used during everyday classroom teaching.
There are currently 40 students of Indian descent attending school at ECMS, Hiebert said. The assistance made available to the school was also a testament of the Tribe’s commitment to education and that same dedication given by Byrd and his staff.