Three area school districts -- Brainerd, Pierz and McGregor -- have been named among 22 "outperforming" school districts in the state, the Minnesota Department of Education recently announced, meaning that students performed significantly better than their peers in similar schools in reading and math proficiency.
An analysis by Standard & Poor's School Evaluation Services of the 332 school districts in Minnesota, that had sufficient data for analysis, found that 22 school districts, or 6.6 percent, outperformed similar school districts in reading and math proficiency for two consecutive school years, 2001-02 and 2002-03. The outperforming schools named in the analysis served students that ranged from 30.2 to 60.3 percent economically disadvantaged while at the same time achieved average proficiency rates in reading and math that ranged from 80.3 to 98.9 percent.
"I think it's outstanding," said Brainerd Superintendent Jerry Walseth.
He said the analysis reflects how others see Brainerd in comparison to other school districts in the state. "It's a measurement of the quality of education on behalf of the people who work in the district and people in the community who support us. I think our staff should feel awfully good about the work that they do," Walseth said.
Parents may access the Web site, www.schoolmatters.com, in order to evaluate the performance of Minnesota school districts and individual schools. The Web-based resource tool is a project of the Minnesota Department of Education, S&P's and the National Education Data Partnership. The Web Site Schoolmatters.com is funded by a $45 million investment by the Broad Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
JODIE TWEED can be reached at email@example.com or 855-5858.
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