Schoolcraft School Board Reviews Test Scores, Bond Issue Changes

John Chapin, a fifth generation farmer, and his family were chosen by the Monsanto Company to be the recipient of a $2,500 award for the charity of his choice. Chapin chose Schoolcraft Community Schools as the recipient of his grant, because he graduated from Schoolcraft Schools. The award was created to find the farmers who help grow their communities. John and Cindie Chapin are shown in the photo with Superintendent Rusty Stitt (on the left), holding the mock check that Monsanto gave the school. Photo by Stephanie Blentlinger, Lingering Memories Photography.

By Kate Vincent

The MEAP testing scores from the Schoolcraft students came back with great improvements this year, surpassing last year’s results. Overall 72 percent of the scores showed increased student proficiency. However there were several areas that stayed flat, indicating no improvement. Most of these were science, math, and writing.

There are several new programs taking effect which address these problem areas in hopes of raising the scores next year.

The tests are given from third to eighth grade covering a variety of subjects. When compared to students in other school districts, Schoolcraft students excelled in nearly every category.

Bond Issue Discussed

In the newest revision of the bond issue plan, the Early Elementary building will be closed, but options for the building will continue to be discussed. Tower Pinkster and CSM, the construction management firm, presented the newest details of the bond project, including up-to-date technology, more efficient energy systems, and additions to the current buildings.

The Upper Elementary building would be remodeled to house students from kndergarten through fourth grade. The Middle School would be partially demolished to create better parking, and the remaining portion of the school, which includes the gym, office, cafeteria, and several classrooms, could be partially renovated into a community center.

Finally, the plans for the High School would be most complex—and costly. The High School would have a large addition on the west side of the building away from the current high school instructional area. The two-story addition would be large enough to house fifth through eighth grades. However, this new portion would be separate from the High School, so the younger and older students would not be in the same areas of the school.

The old portion of the High School would remain mostly untouched, except for the upgrades to technology and the new energy improvements. Several sports areas are also part of the new plan for the schools. The football stadium will be remodeled to provide more bathrooms as well as a new center ticket booth. The project total is anticipated to be near $14 million, down from a previously anticipated total.

Taking a step towards being a technologically advanced school, the school has purchased a set of Mac Books for the school board members to use as the members move to a paperless system and to better acquaint them with how this useful new technology has ushered the school into the 21st century.

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