Re-2 report card shows growth
RIFLE – Report cards are out, and Garfield School District Re-2 is proud to show off its good grades from the state.None of the district’s seven schools received a low-achieving grade in the state’s annual school accountability report. This is the first year since the state began assessing schools that all Re-2 schools are rated average- or high-achieving. The state began assessing schools in the 2000-01 school year.The ratings are based primarily on scores from the Colorado Student Assessment Program, a standardized test administered to almost all students in the state to insure that they’re meeting the state standards in reading, writing and math.”We had a lot of confidence that we would grow,” said assistant superintendent Ava Lanes about the scores. “But it’s nice to have that affirmation.”The district has made a lot of changes since 2001, when none of its schools were high-achieving.At that time, students only attended Wamsley Elementary School from kindergarten through second grade and then went to Esma Lewis Elementary School from third to fifth grade and Rifle Middle School for sixth through eighth grade.”It was really difficult to get any focus with that sort of misalignment,” said superintendent Gary Pack. A bond issue in 2001 allowed the district to build more schools and create a more cohesive district. “We’re really trying to personalize education,” Pack said.Some of the biggest changes, such as standards-based report cards, have started at the elementary school level. The district believes that may be why the elementary schools have seen more improvement than the middle schools and Rifle High School. Coal Ridge High School did not receive a report card, as it just opened this year.Highland and Wamsley elementary schools saw “improvement” in CSAP scores this year. That improvement bumped Wamsley up from low-performing into the “average” category. Roy Moore Elementary School remained stable with its “high” ranking.”Kathryn Senor is this close to being rated ‘excellent,'” Pack said, holding his index finger and thumb together.The school saw “significant improvement” within its “high” rating.There were two groups of students in the district whose academic growth “declined.” The fifth- and sixth-graders at Riverside School and the seventh- and eighth-graders at Rifle Middle School.Lanes said the focus that has been applied at the elementary school level is trickling upward through the grades. While those declines are concerning, neither she nor Pack think they will be lasting.The fifth- and sixth-grade students at Rifle Middle School “improved” themselves out of a “low” standing into the “average” category.Rifle High School students are “stable” at and “average rating.” Pack said he believes the actions the district has taken at the elementary school level will work with older students as well.”We’re not there to teach a subject; we’re there to teach a student,” Pack said.School Overall academic performance Academic growth of studentsHighland Elementary SchoolAverageImprovementKathryn Senor Elementary SchoolHighSignificant improvementRoy Moore Elementary SchoolHigh StableWamsley Elementary SchoolAverageImprovementRiverside School (fifth-sixth grades)Average DeclineRiverside School (seventh-eighth grades)Average StableRifle Middle School (fifth-sixth grades)Average StableRifle Middle School (seventh-eighth grade)Average DeclineRifle High School AverageStable
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Courtney Hassell says she could have been completely disillusioned with schools and education, and in many ways she was, after an experience three years ago at Glenwood Springs High School.