Enrollment appears to be down slightly in the Riverdale School District, at least according to early numbers.
Initial figures show Riverdale has 673 students, compared to 703 in May.
District Administrator Bryce Bird revealed the first Friday count at Monday's Riverdale School Board meeting, which contained a light agenda and a lot of good news for the district.
"We've been holding our own the last two years," said Bird. "We haven't had a lot of decreases."
The number is subject to change. Bird recalled that two years ago the district ended up with 30 more students than projected.
Board member Jim Rowland, for one, wasn't down about the numbers. Going class by class, Rowland felt the numbers were mostly strong.
"It's very promising that we hardly have any in the low 30s," said Rowland, referring to class population.
Most classes were in the 40s and 50s. The high number was the freshman class of 64, up from last year's number of 51. The lowest numbers were seen in grades 5 and 6 - 36 and 32 students, respectively.
Award of recognition
K-8 Principal Shari Hougan informed the board that Riverdale Elementary has earned the Wisconsin School of Recognition Award for the second straight year.
Hougan noted that Riverdale's students' scores on the 2010-11 state reading and math tests was above average for schools with similarly sized districts, schools, grade configurations and poverty levels.
She also reported that Riverdale Elementary met yearly progress for the past two years.
The 2011-12 Wisconsin School of Recognition awards go to schools that have some of the highest poverty rates in the state, based on free and reduced-price school lunch data. Schools receiving the award are either Title 1 eligible and receive Title 1 funding to provide services to high numbers or high percentages of economically disadvantaged students.
There is a recognition ceremony on Oct. 12 at the State Capitol for the awards. Riverdale Elementary will receive $5,000 for school-related purposes. And its teachers are eligible to compete for the Wisconsin Schools of Recognition Teacher Fellowship Program.
Both Riverdale principals gave updates on the state of the district's intervention programs, aimed at helping struggling students get back on track.
At the elementary and middle school level, Hougan reported that the REMS Response to Intervention has started. READ 180 is being offered to Middle School students who need a reading intervention. The class is taught by Abby Wiest, whose teaching contract for 2011-12 was approved on Monday.
Math 7 provides extra support for those who need help with math. Team teaching will be provided by Bruce Borchardt and Jackie Gerner, who also had her 2011-12 contract approved Monday night.
Intervention study halls are being held in periods 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. The middle school intervention staff is Sanford Miller, Jon Schmidt, Gerner, Tim McKenney and Jill Nankee.
As for the elementary school, intervention times are scheduled every afternoon. Students are grouped according to test data, and extra support is made available at each grade level to keep the groups as small as possible.
At the high school level, Principal Dan Kiel noted that 44 students have been scheduled for intervention. Past academic performance, along with 8th grade teacher recommendations, were taken into consideration in choosing the students.
Kiel reported that there has been much more communication among staff regarding students who are missing work or at-risk of failing.
Wiest and Gerner were hired to replace Erin Blakley and Brooke Mathews. Their resignations were approved by the board Monday.
Blakley served as a teacher and Middle School Student Council/National Honor Society Advisor.
Other extracurricular 2010-11 contracts approved by the board Monday included: Jill Nankee, PI-34 mentor; Lynn Tarrell, PI-34 mentor; and Shari Troxel and Cindy Bremer, middle school annual advisors; and Jen Goplin, middle school Honor Society advisor.