USD 489 students score high on assessments
By JUDY SHERARD
Hays USD 489 students scored well on the spring assessment tests.
Superintendent Will Roth updated board of education members Monday night on the district's scores.
"Our students and staff do such a good job that it's fun to share with you," Roth said of the scores.
The students still are being tested under the No Child Left Behind guidelines, he said.
The total for all of the district students taking the reading assessment was 96.4 percent, compared to the state total of 88.1.
In math, the USD 489 score for all students taking the assessment was 94.2, and the state score was 86.5.
"We have one more time that we take the state assessments. ... We are knee deep in changing our standards to the common core standards," Roth said.
Some teachers are concerned scores might go down because they're not teaching the same things students will be tested on.
However, Roth said he's encouraging them to move forward with the new standards.
"We need to get started because in two years, when the new assessment comes out, that's what they're going to be assessed on. Particularly with math, if we don't spend two or three years and get a head start, our students are going to have huge gaps in their learning."
The ACT composite score was 22.5 for the 161 Hays High School seniors who took the test last year. That's higher than the state composite score of 21.9 and national composite of 21.1.
Board clerk Sandra Bainter notified the board she plans to retire effective Jan. 1. Bainter, who also serves as director of accounting and Title I secretary, has been employed by the district for 23 years.
In other business, the board:
* Approved changes to board policy.
* Accepted resignations from Stephanie Jahnsen, O'Loughlin principal secretary; Crystal Speiss, Hays High evening custodian; April Green, Roosevelt special ed para; Kendra Vaughn, Hays Middle School assistant cook; James Harris, HMS assistant track coach; Anthony Loreg, mechanic; Shannon Demel, Hays High assistant softball coach; Amanda Matzke, Wilson special ed para; Ryan Brungardt, Lincoln after-school care assistant; Ashley Jacques, transportation dispatcher; and Jennifer Faas, Wilson special ed teacher.
* Approved transferring Martin Straub to Hays High principal from Hays High assistant principal, effective July 1.
* Approved maternity leave for Tasha Lang, Wilson special ed teacher; and Amanda Callahan, Lincoln teacher.
* Accepted retirement for Clifford Engel, custodian.
* Approved provisional employment for Jeri Wilson, O'Loughlin secretary; Jo Anne Jennings, part-time Washington Elementary migrant teacher; Collette Winzerling and Yarali Resendiz, O'Loughlin ELL paras; Adam McElwain, Hays High evening custodian; Melanie Smith, Hays High assistant cheer coach; Naomi Basgall, O'Loughlin after-school care worker; Angie Schaard, Russell Early Childhood Connections teacher assistant; Ronald Quint and Mayla Moore, bus drivers; Melissa Robben, Victoria special ed para; Brandy Kinderknecht, Holy Family special ed para; Natascha Degenhardt, HMS assistant cook; Christine Anderson, Wilson special ed para; Colton Stone, Lincoln after-school care assistant; Jeremy Tucker, O'Loughlin custodian.