When the North Judson-San Pierre School Board met for their September meeting, they received a presentation from Jr./Sr. High School Principal Jim Polite about the schools’ improvement plan.
Principal Polite informed board members that officials have comprised a 3-year ‘plan for continuous improvement’ based on various types of data.
He said throughout the process, they’ve assessed state and federal report cards and discipline and attendance data in addition to curriculum and assessment audits and an instructional investigation.
Polite added that they also obtained information from inquiry forms from educators and parents as well as focus groups with teachers, administrators, and students.
There were four main focus areas that Polite noted were the key elements to the improvement plan. Those focus areas included increasing graduation and attendance rates to ensure post-secondary readiness, increasing student proficiency levels, increasing student growth rates, and specifically increasing proficiency levels and growth rates of students with disabilities.
Polite also addressed four different ‘Smart Goals’ that laid out the strategies that would be utilized to address the specific focus areas and how progress will be measured.
After the presentation, Board Vice President Sandy Kersting Rudd asked why the percentage that’s listed in the graduate rate goal seems so low.
Polite explained that it may seem low but that’s because typically, the graduation rate has been above the state average and any growth would be building on a rate that’s already pretty high.
However, Polite did mention that the State of Indiana has been in a time of transition when it comes to the graduation rate and noted that last year’s rate may be surprisingly low due to a change to requirements.
He explained, “Last year, if you look at our data, you may see a plummet, ‘like oh my lord we went from 93 percent all the way down to 60-something percent’ that was because last year and last year only we were not permitted to count a general diploma as a graduate, which was really unfair to kids in my opinion.”
He noted that they will be allowed to include general diplomas this year so the graduation rate should be more in line with previous years.
He noted, “We hope to be back up in the 92-93 percent range, which is well above the stage average so if we hope to increase by 1 percent per year we think it’s a lofty goal because we’re already at a high level but that’s why it may seem a little bit low.”
The board members provided unanimous approval for the plan to be submitted to state officials by the October deadline.
The information provided above is just a summary of the information that was presented during the school board meeting.
You can view the slides that Principal Polite presented to members below: