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North White School Corporation visits Hanover

North White School Corporation in Monon, Indiana, recently expressed keen interest in our innovative Response to Intervention (RTI) program at Jane Ball Elementary School. Two years ago, our RTI initiative underwent a transformative shift with the adoption of the 95% Phonics Intervention System, a targeted intervention approach focused on building essential foundational literacy skills. The success and positive outcomes observed with this system led us to further integrate its principles into our K-2 classrooms as the core program, aptly named the 95% Phonics Core Program. 

The effectiveness of our approach caught the attention of North White School Corporation, prompting them to reach out to the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction, Mr. Phil Misecko. Subsequently, a conference call was organized to address their inquiries and concerns regarding the implementation of the program in their RTI framework. This conversation led to the exciting idea of North White School Corporation visiting our district to witness the 95% Phonics Core Program in action and gain valuable insights into its practical application within an educational setting. We were excited to invite three people from North White School Corporation to our school on October 25th to showcase our program to help them further develop theirs. 




Nikki Bridges, current Dean of Students and Instructional Coach at Red Cedars Elementary School, has been at Hanover since 2021 where she was the lead RTI teacher at Jane Ball. Before coming here, she was the lead RTI teacher and a third-grade teacher at River Forest, where they had been using the 95% intervention component for many years. 

In Mrs. Bridges’ first year at Jane Ball, she slowly implemented this program into RTI. The teachers saw significant growth and wanted something at the core classroom level to set students up for success. During the 2022-2023 school year, the 95% program was introduced in the core classrooms at both of our K-2 schools, Jane Ball and Lincoln. Now that Mrs. Bridges is at our 3-5 building, Red Cedars, she would like to see the incorporation of the 95% program in the core classrooms, as it is already used in the pull-out RTI program.

Our guests included key individuals dedicated to education. Dennis Bricui, the Principal of North White Elementary School, Stacy Reif, the Title 1 Director of NWSC and also a Title 1 teacher at North White Elementary School, and Laurie Davis, an Interventionist at North White Elementary. Mrs. Bridges led the visit, accompanied by Mr. Misecko, Mrs. Rebecca Delgado, Principal of Jane Ball, and Hanover’s Public Information Officer, Kim Mooney. The morning began with the group visiting the RTI component of program 95. This consisted of 4 small groups with a teacher in each group. The RTI teachers worked with the small groups to ensure that everyone understood the topic that was being covered. 




After the excitement of visiting the classrooms and seeing the RTI program in action, the group debriefed which allowed our guests to ask any questions and further understand the program. Mrs. Bridges explained how Hanover got to this point and the steps taken to develop the RTI program. She explained her background at River Forest and her journey of getting the RTI program to where it is today. Hanover staff was able to offer invaluable suggestions to NWSC.

Dennis Bricui was drawn to Hanover’s RTI program because of the usage of the 95% intervention program. He heard of our school through a colleague who worked closely with Mr. Misecko. Mr. Bricui explained that the RTI program at North White is continually evolving. They recently transitioned to a Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) and have implemented several changes. With a student population of 392 students from kindergarten to fifth grade, Mr. Bricui said, “ I am committed to ensuring that each child receives tailored support and an enriching educational experience. Through thoughtful planning and collaborative efforts, we will create an inclusive environment where every student can thrive academically and personally.”

One of the key takeaways from Mr. Bricui’s visit to our school was the vertical alignment between the core instruction and intervention program. He felt that the approach was well-coordinated and ensured a cohesive educational experience, maximizing the impact on students' learning and development. He was impressed with the evident focus on student-centered learning. He expressed, “The moment I stepped into the building, I felt a warm and inviting atmosphere. Inside the classrooms, both teachers and students were actively engaged, creating a vibrant and dynamic learning environment.”




Stacy Reif informed us that North White purchased the 95% Group intervention materials to utilize in Title 1 at the end of the 2022-2023 school year. Their 95% account executive was able to connect them to us at Jane Ball as we had been successfully utilizing the program with documented student growth. They wanted to observe the 95% program in action. Mrs. Reif said, “As Title 1 director, I was particularly interested in watching small group instruction.  It's one thing to purchase a program, cross your fingers, and hope for the best.  We purchased 95 percent because it follows the Science of Reading and demonstrates positive student outcomes.” 

“Networking is EXTREMELY important,” said Mrs. Reif, “It makes us stronger.” She explained how education shouldn’t be an isolated field and wants to use the opportunity to tap into others’ areas of expertise giving the ability to learn firsthand. This saves time and resources to figure out what works and what doesn’t work. 

Laurie Davis expressed, “We were drawn to Hanover Schools because of the use of the 95% program to assist us with our implementation of the program.” She explained that their intervention program is pull-out and noticed how beneficial the in-class 95% program is in the core curriculum. She enjoyed seeing how each grade level built upon what the previous year had already taught, as well as the student engagement and participation in the classroom. 

The recurring hashtag used at Hanover is #HanoverPROUD because we are proud of our students, our staff, and our community. This opportunity to showcase our RTI program to another school was exciting because not only do we want to see success in our schools, but success in all schools. We thank Mrs. Bridges for her hard work to get the RTI program to where it is today and we are excited to see where it goes in the future. We were honored to have North White School Corporation visit our district and we are excited for the opportunities this will provide their students.