Friday, April 11, 2014


We Are Still #1!

I know it’s not polite to brag, but we’re No. 1. Once again we rank at the top of the 10 largest school districts in Wisconsin when it comes to reading and math proficiency.

I hope we can all take a deep breath today as we start thinking about the weekend and enjoy a win – a success we can all share. Our students perform at a high level and they have been recognized via the WKCE results. This student achievement is the result of district employees in all areas who excel at what they do, and they excel every day, all day.

Our district’s top ranking comes against strong competition. We are alone at the top among the state’s 10 largest districts in math, and we share the top with Eau Claire in reading. Janesville, Eau Claire, Appleton and Waukesha are the only districts scoring above the state average in math, while Janesville, Eau Claire, Appleton and Madison outperform the state average in reading.

So please, let’s all pause for a moment and enjoy our success. Then, it’s back to work.

And we have a lot of work to do. For example, our high school 10th grade math scores are unacceptable. I see district math scores of 59 in third grade, 58 in fourth grade, 62 in fifth grade, 55 in sixth grade, 52 in seventh grade and 50 in eighth grade – all well above the statewide average. Then we get to high school and the numbers drop off. We average only 46 in 10th grade, which is only 1 point higher than the state average.

The bright side is we recognize these deficiencies, and we are addressing them. Project Redesign is in place in the high schools, and we are making major changes in our instruction and curriculum to increase our students’ ability to read and do math.

Overall, we continue to perform at the very top among the 10 largest districts in the state. I’m confident we will continue to perform at that level while we move along on our journey to academic excellence and fulfill our mission to serve our community by educating every child.

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