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Sunset Lake School Becomes a Focused School

sunset focus
Jamie Masco, instructional consultant for Sunset Lake Elementary School, explained to the Vicksburg school board, how the school went from a ‘focus’ school to a ‘focused’ school.

By Sue Moore

How did the Sunset Lake School go from a Focus School in 2011 to closing the gap in 2014? Jaime Masco, Sunset’s instructional consultant, gave a slide presentation to the Vicksburg School Board at its October meeting. She showed how students improved in the two years between the time the school was declared by the state to be a Focus School and now when how they have become a Focused School.

It’s all about the gap in MEAP scores between the lowest scoring students and the highest, she said. The state is expecting better performance from the lower achieving students, while keeping those at the highest end doing even better.

“It took two years and lots of team effort by the staff and teachers,” Masco said. “Each year we made progress because everybody embraced the numbers and ran with it. The hard data helped us see what had to be done and we were driven by that.”

Pre-school Adds Classrooms

Tonya Nash, community education director, reported on how the school was doing with its “at risk” students in the Bulldogs Beginnings preschool. The state is putting emphasis on funding three and four year old preschool classrooms with Nash’s program devoted to four year olds. Vicksburg has gone from 16 children in half day attendance, to each elementary school housing a full day classroom, serving 48 children she said. The program has always included two home visits and conferences with the parents.

Enrollment Figures

Final enrollment figures showed an official gain of seven and ½ students, Superintendent Glaes reported, for a total of 2,673.49. This comes very close to the predicted 2,665 students on which the budget numbers were calculated in June, he said.

Bids Let for Construction Activities

Steve Goss, assistant superintendent, explained that some of the work included in the successful millage got underway this summer and into the fall, but most of it will begin when school lets out in June, 2015, when crews will hit the ground running. Frederick Construction is overseeing all the work being done on a daily basis including the fire alarm system at the high school, cabling bid at the administration building and the DataCom group’s technology work.

Superintendent Glaes Honored

Board President Skip Knowles congratulated Superintendent Glaes on being selected by the Michigan School Counselor Association as its 2014 Administrator of the Year for the role he has played in supporting school counselors in Michigan. He was honored at a luncheon at the Association’s annual meeting in Auburn Hills.

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