Goodman-Armstrong students surpass state average in reading

GOODMAN, Wis. – Goodman-Armstrong Creek School District has made strong gains on its Elementary and High School Report Cards, surpassing last year’s summary scores, according to Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction School Report Cards.

Last year the elementary school received a score of 70.4 and this year they have improved their score to 72.2, scoring within the top limits of the Meets Expectations category.

Likewise experiencing growth was the high school. In the previous year, the high school earned a score of 66.4 and this has improved to a score of 69.5, which is also within the state’s Meets Expectations category. New to the school report card this year is the overall index rating for a school district.

The Goodman-Armstrong Creek School District earned a rating of 70.2, meeting state expectations.

Each school district in the state is issued a report card in the fall in which they are measured, upon a weighted point scale, in the areas of student achievement in reading and mathematics, student growth from year to year, on track and post-secondary readiness, and closing achievement gaps.

Each school is given an index score, or an overall summary score out of 100. Schools desire to be in the state Meets Expectation category or higher; which is 63 points and higher.

This report card, in its second year in Wisconsin, is a part of the increased accountability for school districts in Wisconsin as a part of the state’s waiver for the No Child Left Behind Act.

Wisconsin’s report card is just one way for parents and community members to understand how their school is doing and where it can improve.

The new report cards will help all Wisconsin public schools get a better picture of how well they help children learn, advance to the next grade, and graduate ready for college and career.

This is a part of the state of Wisconsin’s goal to have every student succeed, graduate, and be ready to pursue further education and a career.

While both schools in the Goodman-Armstrong Creek are meeting state expectations, perhaps the greatest accomplishment was their performance in reading on the high school report card.

“The high school reading scores were a great reflection of the hard working students that we have here in the school district,” said Kate Millan, Goodman-Armstrong Creek’s District Assessment Coordinator.

“Not only did the students do very well in achievement in the area of reading, improving their score from 28.8 in the 2011-2012 school year to a 32.2 out of 50 possible points in the 2012-13 school year, half of the students counted on the district’s high school report scored advanced or proficient on the exam taken in November of 2012,” Millan saud.

“While that may not sound impressive, the state average of students scoring advanced or proficient of the reading exam is currently 36 percent. Given the state’s new, more rigorous cut scores that are aligned to the NAEP exam (National Assessment of Educational Progress), surpassing their counterparts in the state, by 14 percent really reflects a strong district wide curriculum,” said Millan.

The high school report card includes data gathered from grades 7-12 as well as students who tested in the 7th, 8th, and 10th grades in the previous fall.

“The improved scores in reading is really a reflection of the district-wide initiative to improve instruction and increase the rigor in reading instruction, from four year old kindergarten through our high school,” said District Administrator Ben Niehaus. “When it comes down to it, I expect every teacher in our district to be a reading and language arts instructor.”

This is also apparent when looking at the growth of the students from the third grade to sixth grade in reading in the elementary school.

“It is nice to see that these changes that we have made are beginning to pay off,” said Niehaus.

Yet another highlight for the district was the high school’s increased score in mathematics.

The district’s achievement scores increased from 30 out of 50 possible points to 31.3 on the most recent report card. This is also observed in the elementary, where the district is neck and neck with the student performance in mathematics with the state.

“Our district’s math team has adopted new materials and have attended additional training to address the increased demand and rigor that the new standards bring,” said Dean of Students Kris Johnson. “This is an area that we anticipate promising growth in the coming years.”

For more about the report card in the state of Wisconsin, visit the Wisconsin Department of Public Instructions accountability website:

For more about the Goodman-Armstrong Creek School District, visit