School and district report cards for the 2015-16 year from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction were released for all schools today. ( http://dpi.wi.gov/accountability/report-cards ) Solon Springs School earned 2 stars on state report card, which means that we have been rated as meeting few expectations for educating students. I am using this rating as a baseline for improvement. We have already implemented a study team to address our Math Curriculum, we have also operationalized daily support for any students who earn grades below a C in the classrooms, and Staff Collaboration time has been assigned for all teachers to address student achievement and success. We will continue to use State Testing Data as a flashlight to highlight areas of improvement in our district. As stated in our Vision statement, we engage ourselves in the learning process and challenge students to meet the highest expectations with pride and honor.
For this year, report cards underwent major changes that were part of Wisconsin Act 55, the 2015-17 state budget. Those changes include variable weighting to address the impacts of poverty on student achievement, a new model for measuring student growth based on value-added methodology developed by the University of Wisconsin Madison, and the legislative requirement to change from the Badger Exam offered through the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium to the Forward Exam. Report cards are based on the Forward Exam in 2015-16, the Badger Exam for 2014-15, and the Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Exam and Wisconsin Alternate Assessment for Students with Disabilities for 2013-14 as well as the 11th-grade ACT Plus Writing and Dynamic Learning Maps assessments (grades three through eight and grade 11). Although report cards provide a snapshot of school and district performance, the 2015-16 report cards should not be compared to report cards from prior years for these reasons. Report card ratings are based on four priority areas: student achievement in English language arts and mathematics, student growth, closing gaps between student populations, and measures of readiness for graduation and postsecondary success. Additionally, schools and districts could have point deductions for failing to meet targets for student engagement indicators: test participation (95% for all students and each subgroup), absenteeism (less than 13%), and dropout rates (less than 6%). Test participation deductions were not applied to district report cards for 2015-16. Our district did receive a full 5 point deduction in honoring the option for parents to opt out of testing for their children which put our test participation rate under 95% for a subgroup of students.
In closing I would like to share our most recent local data that was earned as of the end of our first quarter of school attendance here in Solon Springs.
62% of all middle and high school students earned Honor Roll certificates.
Less than 1% of grades 6-12 have a grade point average of 2.0 or less.
6 of our seniors have been accepted into colleges of their choice.
62 student classes are accessed for Advanced Placement, Honors Level Classes and Transcripted Credit this school year. This is an increase of 10 from last school year.
100% of our students in the elementary demonstrate consistent attendance with less than 10 days of absenteeism.
District Level assessments in Math and Reading indicate a student performance outlook of improvement. At this time scores of proficient/advanced indicate between a 10 -20% increase from the reported State Testing percentages.
Extra-Curricular opportunities such as sports, music and forensics have also seen an increase in student participation this year.
As always, I welcome your input, questions and concerns. Please feel free to call or connect with me at any time.
With Pride and Respect,