Initial goals in ALO are set to provide a goal for each student that is meaningful, ambitious, and attainable. In ALO, initial goals are based on: a) the individual student’s benchmark status (i.e., At or Above Benchmark versus Below or Well Below) and b) the desired Pathway of Progress for that student (i.e., Typical or Above Typical progress).
As shown in Table 1, for students whose benchmark status at the beginning of the year is At or Above Benchmark, the initial goal is set at the midpoint of the Typical Progress pathway for each student based on that student’s beginning of year composite score. These students are likely to continue to achieve reading goals with typical progress.
For students whose benchmark status is Below or Well Below Benchmark at the beginning of the year, it is not enough to make typical progress. For these students it is important to accelerate student progress to achieve reading goals. Thus, the initial student goal is set at the midpoint of the Above Typical Progress pathway for each student based on that student’s beginning of year composite score.
The initial goals are designed to provide an individual goal for each student that is meaningful, ambitious, and attainable. Teachers may always adapt or modify the initial goal based on additional information about the student or the educational context.