Vermillion brings home high marks on 2005 Report Card

Vermillion brings home high marks on 2005 Report Card By David Lias The Vermillion Public School District is demonstrating a high rate of accountability as it strives to meet state and federal education standards.

South Dakota�s annual Report Card, released this week by the state Department of Education, shows local students are progressing well, and meeting and often exceeding both state and national performance levels.

In the 2004-2005 school year, the Vermillion School District, like other school systems across the nation, was held accountable in 28 areas.

�We received adequate yearly progress (AYP) in all areas but one,� Superintendent Mark Froke told the Vermillion School Board Monday, �and that�s in the area of middle school special education reading, and that seems to be the common problem area in terms of testing for schools across South Dakota and the nation.�

South Dakota�s annual report card is based largely on the test scores of 64,000 public school students in grades 3-8 and 11, who took the Dakota STEP last spring.

The Dakota STEP is the state�s major assessment tool under No Child Left Behind. The state sets annual goals for the test as a way to measure progress toward the ultimate goal of 100 percent proficiency by 2013-14.

�Last year, we did not achieve adequate yearly progress in middle school math,� Froke said. �We moved out of that. Last year, we didn�t achieve adequate yearly progress at Jolley Elementary because of the subgroup Native American, but this year, we�ve made AYP at Jolley in all areas, so we�re really pleased with that.�

Jolley School will need to maintain those high levels for yet another year to be considered out of the school improvement status.

Froke gained access Monday to detailed data from the state Department of Education. That information was embargoed by Pierre until Wednesday.

�The numbers show solid growth in many areas,� he said. �I was very pleased with that, and I have to give credit to our students and staff for their hard work in achieving solid progress in the Dakota STEP test.�

Froke said as the state releases more detailed data, it will be shared with the school board.

The full 2005 Report Card, including reports for individual schools, is available on the Department of Education�s Web site at www.doe.sd.gov. Click on �Report Card.�

�I view this report as quite positive,� Froke said. �We�ve made strong progress in most of the areas. There has been a real strong effort on the part of our students and staff.�

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