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Two Delavan schools not meeting standards

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Kayla Bunge
June 27, 2008
— Delavan-Darien High School and Phoenix Middle School are on notice for failing to meet requirements of the federal No Child Left Behind law called “adequate yearly progress.”

The middle school failed to meet the reading standard among its students with disabilities. The standard is 74 percent of students scoring in the “proficient” or “advanced” categories on the annual Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Exam.


Superintendent Wendy Overturf said the district already has plans to assess its special education program to be sure students’ needs are being met.


“We have high expectations for our special education students,” she said, “but obviously we’re looking into whatever interventions we have … making sure we have the interventions in place that need to be.”


The high school failed to meet the standard for percentage of high school graduates. The standard is 80 percent of students graduating.


Overturf said the district isn’t formally challenging the notice but looking into it to ensure the correct graduation data was used in making the designation.


“We are questioning how we recorded some of our students,” she said.


Students who attend the New Chance alternative school in Elkhorn or other alternative schools were not counted as graduates, even though they received a Delavan-Darien High School diploma upon graduation, Overturf said.


“We know they were recorded incorrectly, but we don’t know if that will bump us to the level we need,” she said.


Overturf said the district can correct the data, but if the changes don’t bring the district into compliance with the federal requirements, it will have to address the problem.


Schools are evaluated on math and reading test scores, test participation, attendance and graduation rates, and missing the mark in a category can land the school on the watch list.


A school or district that fails to meet an adequate yearly progress standard two years in a row is labeled “in need of improvement.” If such school receives federal Title I funding, the government imposes sanctions.


2007-08 AYP STANDARDS

Mathematics: 58 percent of students must score “proficient” or “advanced” on the annual WKCE or its equivalent for students with disabilities.


Reading: 74 percent of students must score “proficient” or “advanced” on the annual WKCE or its equivalent for students with disabilities.


Test participation: 95 percent of students enrolled in the tested grade must take the WKCE or its equivalent for students with disabilities.


Graduation or attendance: Elementary and middle schools must have an attendance rate of at least 85 percent or show growth over the prior year. High schools must have graduation rates of at least 80 percent or show growth over the prior year.



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