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2014-07

American GIA Program Success
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American GIA Program Success

By Jon Tragash, Primary School American Program Acting Director       


My name is Jonathan Tragash and I am the Coordinator of the American primary school GIA (Griggs International Academy) program;  I have been working with GIA for the past four years.  My main attraction to this program  is that we are able to develop truly well rounded Chinese students.   


Our program combines two different education systems! How many programs can make that claim?  The children are able to receive their Chinese language and Mathematics instruction in their native language and still have enough time during the day to make it through most of an accredited U.S. program to receive their diploma.        


During my time with the GIA program, I always believed that our students were learning at very high levels.  I could hold a fairly decent conversation with second grade students during our lessons or on breaks and a very good one with our fifth graders.  In January of 2014, our students took the MAP, Measure of Academic Progress, examination for the first time.  It is a truly innovative test because it is computerized and will actively adapt to each student as they are testing.  I was equally as excited about the test results; they confirmed what I had thought all along.  Most of the students in the program are performing on or within one grade level of a native student in the U.S.         


After administrating and working with the GIA system for the past few years, it was great to finally get this affirmation.  Our effort to create an immersive language environment for our students has really paid off.  None of this would have been possible without the help of our great team of teachers.  They put in so much effort and I hope they all continue to stay with us for many years to come.  


With the feedback from this test in hand, we will be able to make the GIA program more productive and efficient.  I look forward to being part of the process at Hua Mei.


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