Storm Lake Schools Superintendent Bill Kruse said he doesn't feel test score information sent to the state accurately reflects growth in the district's students.
The state is asking for achievement goals for students in the same grade level in different years, such as a comparison between 4th grade students in 2000-01 and 4th grade students in 2001-02.
The school district feels it would be more worthwhile to consider growth of the same group of students as they advance through the grades.
Kruse presented some of that data to the school board at Tuesday's meeting, and that information generally shows improvement for students as they move through the grades.
"In my mind this means something," Kruse said, adding that he plans to submit that data and his opinion to the state in the fall along with the required information.
"They're going to get more than they bargained for when they get this one."
Kruse also discussed results of reading tests for elementary students, which show positive results from the Reading Rescue program. The district plans to explore a similar program for math to help students reach the proper grade equivalency.
Of the other district goals, the school board plans to examine three potential building projects. They are a theater/auditorium, an elementary school and a community center. The school board will tour similar facilities in surrounding communities and compile a report of its findings. By March 2003, the board plans to decide which direction it should go with any or all of the projects.
Character education will continue to be discussed. An informational meeting is scheduled for October for school faculty and community members to explain the role of character education. The current task force on the issue will then form a plan to present to the school board in January.
The third goal is to review the ELL program. The program will be examined at various levels throughout the year, including early childhood programs and how ELL blends with classroom instruction. A report will be made to the board in May 2003.
Finally, along with exploring a math tutorial program, the district will also continue to explore existing programs like Reading Rescue, ReadWell, Accelerated Reader and the TLC and ETA after-school programs.
In other news:
* Buena Vista Regional Medical Center will supply a nurse to provide health services in the Storm Lake School District. The school board approved the agreement at this week's meeting.
BVRMC will provide one registered nurse for student health services and health education components. The nurse will also provide education as part of the "Growing Healthy" program.
The nurse will be stationed in the middle school, South and East elementaries, replacing the school nurse who is retiring. The school district will pay $30,000 to BVRMC for the services.
Dr. Mark Schultz, president of the school board, said the arrangement should be mutually beneficial.
"It gives us an opportunity to potentially enhance our health services using resources the hospital has, given they're in the health business and we're in the education business," he said.
An evaluation of the program will be done in May of 2003 before a decision is made whether or not to continue the services the following year.
* Substitute teachers will see a pay increase to $80 per day. The school board approved raising the salary, which was $75.
Kruse said substitutes are hard to find and should be commended for their service. "A small increase... is certainly worth their time and effort," he said.
* Textbook rental fees were increased to $30 for students K-12, while activity tickets are $17.