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Message from Superintendent Brewer

Earlier this month, parents received a letter from our District indicating that we failed to meet Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP), and will be considered a failing school by the United States Department of Education.  In this letter I will:

  •  Share some key information about the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA)/No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001.
  • Identify several facts about our District assessment performance that contradict the above stated position

For schools to meet AYP this year, 100 percent of all students must meet standard on the Washington State Measurement of Student Progress (MSP) Assessment.  This expectation of 100 percent had very good intentions in 2001, but it disregards the fact that students with special needs, limited English exposure, and special family circumstances can and will impact a student’s ability to learn at the same rate of their peers.  As a result, nearly every school in our state is now considered a “failing” school.

Pioneer School District’s first commitment is to raise student achievement.  This is demonstrated by our recent State assessment data.  In fact, May of 2014, Pioneer School District was notified by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction that our District had “tested” out of the Focus School label (bottom 10% of schools in sub group performance).

Randy Dorn, our State Superintendent, indicated our school was one of very few schools that progressed enough in student performance to exit or be removed from the lowest performing list. 

Additional information of raising student achievement is evident on recent MSP Scores released on Wednesday, August 27, 2014.

You can view this data analysis at:  http://bit.ly/1uDgNqj

 Some 2014 MSP highlights:

  • Reduced the number of all students not meeting the reading standard by 17.1% over the last three years in the elementary grades (3, 4, and 5)
  •  Reduced the number of all students not meeting the reading standard by 13.4% over the last three years in the middle school grades (6, 7, and 8)
  •  Reduced the number of Special Education students not meeting the reading standard by 32.4% over the last three years in the middle school grades
  •  Reduced the number of low income students not meeting the reading standard by 16.0% over the last three years in middle school grades
  • Reduced the number of all students not meeting the math standard by 21.5% over the last three years in the elementary grades
  • Reduced the number of Special Education students not meeting the math standard by 28.4% over the last three years in the elementary grades
  • Reduced the number of low income students not meeting the math standard by 17.6% over the last three years in the elementary grade

Finally, I believe our School District is making great progress towards providing a quality education for ALL students.
 
The work is far from complete, as we continue to strive and challenge ourselves as a learning organization for even better results in the future.  But, make no mistake, our collaborative effort among District staff of improving educational strategies, parent involvement, wonderful students, and supportive community patrons is making a difference and we are improving our educational system. 

Sincerely,

Martin A. Brewer

PS: Please follow us on Facebook and/or twitter (@pioneerschools) to hear the most recent news on the good work being done within our school system.