(Duluth, MN – August 30, 2018) - Today, the Minnesota Department of Education recognized 526 public schools across the state as top performers in multiple areas of progress in school performance.
The recognition is a key part of the state’s new North Star accountability system, which aims to create more equitable and well-rounded learning opportunities for all students across the state. Using data from the five key indicators that make up North Star— achievement and progress on state reading and math tests over time, progress towards English language proficiency, graduation rates and consistent attendance—the state is better able to identify and learn from schools that consistently perform at high levels across multiple domains.
“North Star places equity at the heart of our work to help all schools serve students well,” said Minnesota’s Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius. “It points us toward the schools that will benefit from intensive support and schools that are positioned to offer lessons about how to help others improve. We will only realize higher outcomes for every student when we fully embrace new strategies to take on this difficult work.”
“We appreciate the state’s more constructive approach to accountability and the opportunity for more support and training for our schools,” said Bill Gronseth, Duluth Public Schools Superintendent. “It’s our goal to ensure every child in our schools has access to an excellent education, particularly traditionally underserved groups of students.”
“The North Star Accountability results are among many pieces of data we’ll use throughout the school year as teachers, principals and administrators review student progress and work together through the Continuous Improvement process to provide what each student needs to be successful,” said Jeff Horton, Duluth Public Schools Assistant Superintendent.
Duluth Public Schools identified as top performers under the North Star Accountability System include:
- Ordean East Middle School
- Lester Park Elementary
- Lakewood Elementary
Data released today also guided the state in prioritizing 485 schools that will receive varying levels of support over the next three years. Under North Star, Minnesota will prioritize the highest level of comprehensive support to 47 schools working to improve across multiple measures, and 147 high schools with graduation rates below 67 percent overall or for any individual student group.
Schools prioritized for comprehensive support will work with the state’s Regional Centers of Excellence, with experts working hand-in-hand with school leadership teams to assess the unique challenges and needs facing educators and students in a given building. Center staff provide specialized support to schools in areas including English learners, equity, graduation, implementation, math, reading and special education.
Duluth Public Schools accessing comprehensive support under North Star Accountability include:
- Denfeld High School
- Duluth Area Learning Center
More targeted support will be provided to 157 schools that may need to focus on a single student group, or may need support on just some of the measures. In Duluth, that includes specialized professional development and networking opportunities from Minnesota’s Regional Centers of Excellence and district support.
Duluth Public Schools accessing targeted support under North Star Accountability include:
- Congdon Park Elementary
- Myers-Wilkins Elementary
- Piedmont Elementary
- Stowe Elementary
Detailed information will be presented at the September 11, 4:15 PM, Education Committee meeting, Historic Old Central High School, 215 N. 1st Avenue East and will be available on the Minnesota Department of Education website. Board meeting videos are available on YouTube.