ELYRIA — Elyria City Schools’ Windsor Elementary School was named a “High Progress School of Honor” by the Ohio Department of Education this week.
To make the list of recognized schools, the school must serve “a substantial proportion of economically disadvantaged students (40 percent or more)” who reach “high academic achievement,” according to the ODE.
Ann Schloss, Elyria Schools’ associate superintendent and director of academic services, said about 55 percent of Windsor students are considered economically disadvantaged, but showed gains in combined reading and math scores and overall proficiency over the last five years.
“It’s a huge honor getting this,” she said, “it shows the huge progress Windsor has made.”
The school also made an overall progress grade of A or B over the last three years and last year had a “Gap Closing” grade of A, she said. State education officials compare the performance of each student subgroup to expected performance goals they set, and Windsor “met those goals in every subgroup category,” Schloss said.
“We’ve been working so hard as a district,” she said. “What we do day in and day out isn’t to perform for the test but to help students perform to the best of their ability.”
Staff members have “done a phenomenal job, have worked extremely hard with all students, and that’s the great thing about these awards is to show that these students have made progress over the years,” Schloss said. “It shows that small growth and progress over an extended period of time is sustainable, and I feel that’s what Elyria is doing: Making growth that we’ll be able to sustain.”
Only 66 other Ohio schools were honored with a similar title — among them Summit Academy Community School Alternative Learners in Lorain and one in the Vermilion Schools.
All are Title I eligible schools, serving 40 percent or more economically disadvantaged students; showed gains on combined reading and math proficiency rates in each of the past five years that met or exceeded the 90th percentile of all statewide gains; received an overall Progress grade of A or B for each of the three most recent years; and had a Gap Closing grade of A, B or C for the 2017-18 school year.
“Ohio’s students can do amazing things, and these schools are creating the right conditions to close achievement gaps and address the issues that sometimes prevent students from taking full advantage of educational opportunities,” said Paolo DeMaria, superintendent of public instruction, who announced the honors Monday.