Gillett schools earn state recognition

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Elementary, middle schools to be honored in May 1 ceremony

Times Herald Photo by Warren Bluhm

Gillett Elementary School has been recognized as a Wisconsin School of Recognition for the sixth consecutive year.

Gillett Elementary School has been named a Wisconsin School of Recognition for the sixth consecutive year.

Wisconsin Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers announced Friday that the award, as well as those for Gillett Middle School and Wabeno Elementary School, is among 178 acknowledging success in educating students from low-income families.

“These schools stand out for their efforts to educate our kids,” Evers said in his announcement. “They are staffed by dedicated educators who work with parents, families, and the school community to support the needs of all kids through rigorous programming and attention to student needs.”

Gillett School District Superintendent Todd Carlson said Tuesday that the accolades belong to the teachers, who last year received a special award for achieving this distinction five years in a row.

“It really shows the committed staff that we have,” Carlson said. “By achieving at a high level year after year, they’re showing that we care and we do a good job.”

The first-time recognition for the middle school is also well-earned, he said.

“We initiated a unique team-teaching program this year that really seems to be paying off,” Carlson said.

The Gillett School Board will hear more details about the awards when it meets Thursday evening, he said.

All award-winning schools receive federal Title I funding to provide services to high numbers or high percentages of economically disadvantaged children. Evers plans to present the awards during a May 1 ceremony at the state Capitol.

The local schools are identified as “Beating-the-Odds Schools,” defined as being in the top 25 percent of high-poverty schools in the state but maintaining above-average student achievement in reading and mathematics when compared to schools from similarly sized districts, schools, grade configurations, and poverty levels.

“In our data-driven society, it’s easy to dismiss a school by looking at its demographic makeup. These schools would not be ‘expected’ to have the student academic achievement and gap closing results they have because of high levels of poverty,” Evers said. “Their success is something to celebrate; it serves as an example of the importance of schools, families, and communities working together to ensure that every child graduates ready for college and careers.”