ONALASKA, WI (WXOW) - Area schools, along with the majority of Wisconsin public schools and districts meet or exceed expectations as graded on report cards released by the Department of Public Instruction Tuesday.
The report cards released Tuesday show that all but 11 districts met or exceeded expectations during the 2012 school year. Milwaukee Public Schools was the only district that failed to meet expectations, while 10 districts met few expectations.
Both the Onalaska and Holmen school districts exceeded expectations. Other districts, including La Crosse, met expectations.
Troy Harcey, Associate Superintendent of Instruction, La Crosse School District said they don't put too much stock in any one set of data because the school report cards are just one measure of success.
"I think we're poised right now to do some amazing things," Harcey said. "My opinion, public education has not been stronger and we're only improving so it's a very exciting time right now in public education."
Onalaska High School significantly exceeded expectations and the school is ranked tenth among other high schools in the state.
Even though the school significantly exceeded school report card expectations, Sandra Riley, Onalaska High School Statistics Teacher said there is still a lot of work to do.
"It's hard to see the struggle but we recognize its necessary because out of struggle comes growth," Riley said.
"We focus on what's going on right now," Fran Finco, Onalaska Superintendent said. "How can we help kids? Do we need to change things with the whole classroom instruction or do we need to take some small group or one on one work?"
At the high school, they've found a little extra time with a teacher can make all the difference.
"We have an open door policy during our prep if students come in they can ask questions," Riley said.
If that's not enough, students are invited to sit in on a second class.
"Knowing the more we can help students read at a higher level, more they can get higher proficiency in math, the better they'll do in all other courses in high school," Jared Schaffner, Onalaska High School Principal said.
Teachers have seen proof that these professional learning communities are helping students.
"Out of many ideas come better ideas so having the time to sit and focus on questions like what is making a child struggle?" Riley said.
This is the first year the report card includes district-wide ratings. There were 1,910 individual schools statewide that received ratings. Of those, 88% meet or exceed expectations. That is up from nearly 86% last year, although how the scores are calculated has changed making comparisons to prior years difficult.
Only 58 schools, or about 3% of all, failed to meet expectations, the lowest possible ranking.
To see how your district and school did, you can click here.
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