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West Branch ready to celebrate first ‘excellent’

October 24, 2012
Morning Journal News

Beloit- West Branch Local schools will be celebrating its highest rank ever on its local report card.

The district earned the highest ranking possible, Excellent with Distinction, on its preliminary 2011-2012 report card released last week by Ohio Department of Education, one of only five districts in Mahoning, Columbiana and Stark counties to attain the honor. The district earned a 100.7 performance index while passing all 26 indicators and scoring above expected growth on the Value Added measure.

"This is a wonderful accomplishment for our students, staff, and community," Weingart said in a released statement. "It really validates the hard work and the exceptional learning that is taking place in our classrooms."

In recognition of the accomplishment, schools Superintendent Dr. Scott Weingart has declared Friday, Oct. 26, 2012, as "Warrior Pride Day." All staff members will wear "Warrior Pride" buttons and students will be encouraged to wear green and white. Elementary students will be invited to attend the home varsity football game versus Salem that night, as well. It is Senior Night for all senior players, cheerleaders and band members and their parents.

"We want to have a day of celebration, and then we will get back to preparing for next year's round of state assessments," Weingart said. "The public schools, especially in our area, are doing amazing things and I think that we often do not take time to celebrate that accomplishment. This was an exceptional year for the Warriors, but great teaching is taking place day after day in all of our area schools. This part of Ohio is a wonderful place to live and to educate our children, and we are proud to be a part of the local education community."

The district has been ranked Excellent the past four years, but this is the first time it has passed all 26 indicators. In 2010-2011 the district earned a 100.2 performance index while meeting 25 indicators, but failed to meet the Adequate Yearly Progress. Weingart credited the continued improvement to early intervention for the district's youngest students.

"Our testing data tells us that the longer we have our students, the higher their achievement," Weingart explained. "Through the federal title one program we have been able to place reading tutors with each of our kindergarten, first and second grades. This has allowed us to provide extra help in the critical years where students are learning to read, and it has allowed us to identify students who are experiencing difficulty and to intervene with them in the early years of their education."

Kevin Howell can be reached at



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