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Indian Valley Record
Greenville, California
November 28, 2012     Indian Valley Record
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November 28, 2012

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Indian Valley Record Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012 3A O Alicia Knadler Indian Valley Editor Plumas Unified School District received a passing grade from the state, thanks to the participation and aca- demic performance 0f stu- dents. District Educational Ser- vices Director Tori Willits reported to the board during its regular meeting Wednes- day, Nov. 14. "The good news is that Plumas Unified is not in 'program improvement,'" Willits said of a status the district would be in if state requirements in standard- ized testing hadn't been met. Though parents can opt out of the testing for their children, almost every single student participated in the testing, which is good for the district, Willits said, because the state requires a 95 per- cent participation rate. The district also exceeded the required academic per- formance index growth, which needed to improve by one point over last year. The score was 817 last year and 824 for 2012, an increase of seven points. Strategies used to ensure students were able to focus during testing vceek were to avoid any outside distrac- tions, such as assemblies, field trips and athletic events. The graduation rate dis- trict-wide was 83.93 percent, which also exceeded the tar- get of 80 percent set by the state. Although the district is not in "program improvement," Willits reported, administra- tion and faculty members are planning specific ways for teachers at each school to improve results even more. Chester Elementary teach- ers will focus mostly on reading and writing perfor- mance, possibly to the point of hiring retired teachers to conduct small-group inter- ventions in English and math. At C. Roy Carmichael Ele- mentary in Portola, the focus will be on creating enthusi- asm for learning among stu- dents with weekly language arts and math grade level standards. Quincy's Pioneer Elemen- tary students who are strug- gling will be identified and targeted with interventions, teacher collaboration will fo- cus on data analysis and classrooms will continue to be monitored in order to pro- vide teacher feedback. Indian Valley Elementary teachers in Greenville re- viewed three years of data to determine what was work- ing and what was not. Small-group instruction was employed, as were other methods to focus strategies on student success. At Greenville Junior-Se- nior High School, students will be met with individually to go over their scores, and students who perform well will be given a grade bump. Tutoring will also be provid- ed. At Portola Junior-Senior High School, math continues to be the focus of attention for instructors and students. A foundations math class will be created for struggling It pays to shop Sterling Sage owner Josh Huddleston awards his Holiday Open House winner, Centella Tucker, of Greenville, a gourmet food gift basket worth $200. Over at Crescent Country, not pictured, the three lucky winners of $50 gift certificates were Cheryl Shipp, of Quincy, Jan Bryant, of Westwood, and Nonie Crosho, of Susanville. Photo submitted I1' Laura Beaton or two. measures: Staff Writer The passage of Proposition The austerity committee was Ibeaton@plumasnews,com 30 is good news for PUSD cof- instructed to conduct its meet- fers, as it.eliminates the poten- ings informally, using a con- The superintendent of tial for an additional bill of ap- sensus model for decision-mak- schools' austerity committee proximately $840,000 from the ing. In the event consensus is invites members of the public state, according to Business Di- unattainable, the committee to present their cost-saving rector Yvonne Bales. will resolve impasses by ma- ideas at public forums in four What it means in terms of jority vote. different Plumas Unified benefit, Bales said, is the dis- The following public forums School District sites Dec. 4- 6. trict will get payments sooner are scheduled: Portola -- Dec. The austerity committee was that will help on some defer- 4, 5:30 p.m. in the Portola High created by the superintendent rals. School library; Quincy -- Dec. of schools in an advisory ca- The austerity committee is 5, 5:30 in the Pioneer-Quincy pacity, and thus it is not re- comprised of up to four mem- Elementary School cafeteria; quired to comply with Brown bers from each community, in- Greenville -- Dec. 5, 6:30 in the Act provisions concerning cluding parents, teachers, con- Greenville High School li- meeting conduct and public no- cerned community membersbrary; Chester -- Dec. 6, 6:30 in tices, according to assistant su- and school site administrators, the Chester High School li- perintendent Bruce Williams. The committee initially met brary. The committee is an off- Sept. 27 for an organizational The upcoming December shoot of the 7-11 committees' meeting. Two additional day- meetings will be the last for- recommendations to the board long meetings, for budget mal opportunity for public in- oftrusteesin spring 2012. training and task-analysis pur- put. Each forum will provide The 7-11 committees were poses, occurred Oct. 5 and 9. an overview of the austerity formed in the four county corn- The austerity committee has committee's progress, followed munities served by PUSD -- been meeting in earnest since by an opportunity for public Portola, Quincy, Indian Valley Oct. 15, said Cory. comment and questions. There are two main subcom-, The committee's final recom- mittees: budget anti research, mendations must be ready for In additiont0 their committee the superintendent by Jan. 15, work, the committee members 2013. are surveying employees at all For more information, contact school sites seeking staff re- Cory at sponses for cost-saving or258-2126. and Chester -- and were tasked with advising the school board on school Clo- sures and consolidations. The austerity committee was formed in September 2011. The committee's task is to identify and prioritize $3 million of ex- pense reductions and/or rev- enue increases that can be im- plemented during the 2013-14 and 2014-15 school years to cre- ate a balanced budget. The district has acknowl- edged at board meetings that its budget has an ongoing "structural deficit" of approxi- mately $3 million. Since PUSD has a healthy reserve, the cuts can be postponed for a year I Richard K. Stockton, That's turkey talk for "Dig in." CLU ChFC, Agent There's no better time to Insurance Uc #0868653 thank you for your continued Providing insurance & Financial Services business. Happy Thanksgiving 65W. Main St., Quincy, CA 95971 to you and your family. (530) 283-0565 Fax (530) 283-5143 Like a good neighbor, www'richardStcktn'us State Farm is there." WE LiVE WHERE YOU LiVE CALL ME TODAY__ I emd about it on our Websiteg junior high students, technology for everyone, use Chester Junior-Senior peer tutoring and implement High math scores were low a new Read 180 program. overall, so teachers will con- Barring special meetings, centrate their efforts with al- the next PUSD meeting will gebra readiness and doublebe Wednesday, Dec. 12, at 5 doses of instruction wherep.m., in the administration needed, building at 50 Church St. in They will also maximize Quincy. teaching time and-increaseBeginning in 2013, regular opportunities to learn, meetings will be on the first At Quincy Junior-Senior Thursday of each month, ex- High, teachers will increase cept for January, when the student success, use best-meeting will be Thursday, practice research instruc-Jan. 10, 2013, with time and tiofial strategies, updatelocation to be announced. No more squinting. No more misplaced glasses. No more distractions. 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