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Enumclaw School Board OKs learning improvement plan

By Brenda Sexton, The Courier-Herald

As part of the national No Child Left Behind act, the Enumclaw School Board approved a learning improvement plan for each school in the district during its most recent meeting.

The board must approve learning improvement plans annually. In the future, plans will be approved in June.

According to Assistant Superintendent Mike Nelson, who presented the board with a brief overview of the program and its ramifications, the plans submitted by each of the district's schools were among the most thoughtful plans for education the district has seen.

The plans are tied to Washington Student Assessment of Learning (WASL) scores and Annual Yearly Progress (AYP) markers set by the state. Nelson explained there is a "state uniform bar" set for all students at various levels and districts must meet those bars yearly. The "bar" increases each year toward a target of 100 percent.

The target is to get all students to achieve 100 percent on a 12-year plan. The emphasis is primarily in reading and math. In the past, a student's achievement and advancement was based on continuous progress - showing progress each year over the previous year's personal ability.

Nelson explained that a school or district failing to meet AYP two years in a row will be disciplined, which could mean anything from presenting a formal plan for improvement and following through to loss of federal funding.

In other business, the board:

€ accepted a donation of $627 from Washington Mutual Bank to be used for inservice opportunities for J.J. Smith Elementary staff; and a $1,205 donation to Black Diamond Elementary from the Black Diamond PTA for the purchase of a laminator and four rolls of laminate.

€ accepted grant money for LAP, $250,871; Title V, $20,584; highly capable $26,980; Title II part A $145,194; Title II part D, $6,181, and TAP, $8,025.

€ paid its bills - WSIPC, for Microsoft hardware and maintenance, $63,261; Puget Sound Energy, two months, $67,743; Puget Sound Educational Service District, annual fee, $41,265; Food Service of America, $35,821; Micro Computer, $14,440; city of Enumclaw, utilities, $14,315; Associated Petroleum, gas, $14,253; University of Washington Educational Outreach, for four individuals, Gates Grant money, $11,527; NW Regional Data, $13,320; Northwest Distribution Center, more food, $9,300.

€ received the final general fund report for fiscal year 2002-03. Madden reported the district's ending unreserved balance is $2.9 million. He said the effort to start cutting back in the spring paid off with a 3 percent savings over the ending budget forecast putting the district in a better position for the budget challenge of the coming year.

Brenda Sexton can be reached at bsexton@courierherald.com

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