Elementary principals use results to work to improve

Results for Wapakoneta City Schools’ two elementaries on state report cards were a bit different but the focus of administrators — improving — remains the same.
Wapakoneta Elementary School was designated an excellent school while Cridersville Elementary School was designated an effective school, based on the results of the 2010-11 school report card.
Wapakoneta Elementary met all five state indicators, scored 99.9 of 120 possible performance index points, met Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) and fell below the value-added measure by meeting expected growth in a year in fourth-grade math but not meeting that expected growth in fourth-grade reading.
Cridersville Elementary scored 93.3 of a possible 120 on the performance index (down from 98.5 in 2009-2010), did not meet Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) due to the economically disadvantaged population at the school not scoring proficient in math, and met the value-added measure, indicating that a year’s worth of growth was achieved in both reading and math for fourth-graders.
Focus areas may be slightly different at the two schools, but principals both say they are striving to improve.

Elementary School
“Our results as a school are really good,” Wapakoneta Elementary School Principal Mark Selvaggio said.
Spotlighting those results in particular grades, Selvaggio said with math scores up to 84 percent for third-graders and down a little to 88.5 percent in reading, he’s excited for the students. The school needed only to meet a state requirement of 75 percent proficiency in both subjects.
In the fourth-grade, reading scores went up to 88.4 percent and jumped significantly to 82 percent in math.
“It’s a good sign,” Selvaggio said. “Our kids are where we want them to go.”
With Wapakoneta Elementary resulting from the blending of the former Centennial and Northridge buildings just a year ago, Selvaggio said he’s proud of how that has gone.
He said the staff plans to use results indicated by the state report card to improve scores further.
“We will look at where kids are and areas that need more focus while continuing to build on our strengths,” Selvaggio said.
Specifically, younger grades in the building are focusing on reading this year, while third- and fourth-graders are spending more time on math intervention, with students split up based on their skills that need improvement. For those students who are advanced, teachers will work on getting them to the next level.
Meanwhile, teacher teams plan to meet throughout the year and talk about how things are progressing and where they want to continue to go and how they suggest getting there.
“New standards will be implemented in a couple years which will impact the entire staff from kindergarten on, not just third- and fourth-grades, which are tested,” Selvaggio said.”We need to start early so we are not behind. It takes the whole school to make those changes.”
Selvaggio said even though many of the changes impact students at higher levels, including more requirements for graduation, the effects are going to trickle down to the elementary level.
“It requires more education on things when they are younger,” Selvaggio said. “We want to do what’s right for the kids and we’re going to start working early and keep working hard to get them ready for graduation.”

Elementary School
“We remain very proud of our reading scores,” Cridersville Elementary School Principal Dave Tester said. “Our third-graders passed at 82.4 percent and our fourth-graders passed at 91.4 percent.
“We feel that our staff does a wonderful job of teaching reading skills to our kids from kindergarten on up,” he said. “They help them become not only good readers, but also hopefully, kids who love to read.”
Tester said as always, they give their Guided Reading program a lot of credit for their students’ reading success.
“Everyone — homeroom teachers, reading teachers, paraprofessionals, etc., come together to teach Guided Reading — and they do a wonderful job,” Tester said.
While reading scores at the school remained high, math scores dropped a bit this year with 70.6 percent of third-graders scoring proficient and 72.9 percent of fourth-graders scoring proficient.
“That is an area we plan to focus on this school year,” Tester said. “In both third- and fourth-grades, our lowest content standards were measurement, geometry and spatial sense.
“We will be working together throughout the year to try and address those weaker areas in math, while still continuing to give great attention to reading, so those skills remain high,” he said.
Plans are to put together teams across grade levels to specifically study the math results and come up with recommendations for how those needs can be addressed.