School District No. 1 reached or surpassed
state and federal accountability standards on
most of the indicators that are measured, principals
reported at the regular board of trustees
meeting on Nov. 8.
The Wyoming Department of Education
established statewide accountability standards
with the 2013 Wyoming Accountability
in Education Act (WAEA). Federal accountability
is measured through the Every Students
Succeeds Act (ESSA) of 2015. ESSA
was fully implemented in the 2017/2018 academic
year, and each state is granted the ability
to set their own long-term and immediate
goals under the federal act.
The state and federal acts both measure accountability
in four core areas: achievement,
growth, equity and English language proficiency.
Achievement is calculated as the percentage
of students who scored “proficient”
or above on the WY-TOPP standardized tests
out of the total number of students who took
Growth tracks changes in achievement for
individual students compared to their cohort
as they progress through grade levels. Since
the WY-TOPP test is new, scores from previous
PAWS and ACT Aspire tests are used to
Equity is designed to account for gaps
between students with low standardized test
scores and those with higher scores. Equity
is measured as a weighted score based on
the number of students in a district who fall
within the bottom 25th percentile on standardized
English language proficiency measures
student progress in learning English during a
specific time frame.
Additional indicators, such as graduation
rate and “post-secondary readiness,” are also
measured at the high school level.
The federal ESSA accountability model
classifies a school as either in need of “comprehensive”
or “targeted support and improvement”
or as “unclassified.” If a school is
performing well on all indicators, that school
receives an “unclassified” designation.
The state WAEA model ranks schools as
“below target,” “meets target” or “exceeds
target” on each indicator.
Pinedale Elementary School received a
score of “meets target” on growth and equity
and “exceeds target” on achievement and
English language proficiency. The school
received an “unclassified” designation by
ESSA, a “good place to be,” said Principal
Greg Legerski at the board meeting.
Legerski said the elementary school’s
attendance rate of 93.1 percent during the
2017/2018 academic year is a five-year high.
Elementary students performed well above
the state average on all of the WY-TOPP
tests with the exception of English language
acquisition, Legerski said. English language
curriculum at the school was “seven or eight
years old” and needed some improvement, he
Overall standardized test scores at the elementary
school continue to improve, Legerski
said, a result of “the incredible dedication of
staff and teachers.”
Pinedale Middle School did well on equity
and achievement standards for both WAEA
and ESSA but received a “below target”
and “below average” score on the WAEA
and ESSA growth indicator. Principal Jeryl
Fluckiger said that the school planned to improve
on growth and look at ways to ease the
difficult adjustment period between elementary
school and middle school known as the
“We are still working a lot on our curriculum
to increase the level of rigor to align
with harder rates of assessment,” he said at
the board meeting.
The attendance rate at the middle school
for academic year 2017/2018 stood at just
below 94 percent, a five-year high. Students
at the school also performed well on the WYTOPP
tests and Fluckiger noted that local
eighth-graders achieved the third highest
scores in the state on the science test.
Pinedale High School received a “meets
target” score on WAEA growth, achievement,
equity and English language proficiency standards.
The school received a positive “unclassified”
designation from ESSA.
The only indicator that the high school did
not meet the accountability target was “postsecondary
readiness.” Principal Brian Brisko
explained that this was a new indicator with
a complex system of measurement that the
school was evaluating.
Attendance at the high school was at a
“five-year high” of 92.3 percent in the first
quarter of 2018, Brisko said. Pinedale High
School boasted a 2017 graduation rate of 98.3
percent, Brisko said, “putting us pretty close
to the top in the state.” He recognized the
“hard work” of staff members at the school
for all their achievements. n