Delta students improving, SD37 report shows

Students in the Delta School District are performing better than they were five years ago, according to the district’s annual student achievement contract.

The provincially-mandated report sets target areas for improving student performance, and was presented to trustees at Tuesday’s school board meeting.

Data collected by the district shows an improving trend between 2007 and 2012, with fewer at-risk students in math, language arts, and English at both the elementary and secondary levels. While aboriginal students considered at-risk in language arts and English fell from 44 to 36 per cent at the elementary level over the past five years, at the secondary level, at-risk students increased from 34 to 36 per cent. However, the six-year high school completion rate for aboriginal students jumped from 60 per cent in 2011 to to 67 per cent last year. That puts the local school district well above the provincial rate of 56 per cent.

“Certainly we have room to improve, but we are doing far better than the provincial average,” said Nancy Gordon, Director of Learning Services, Delta School District.

For special needs students, the six-year completion rate average in the Delta School District is 62 percent, while the provincial average is 49 per cent.

“It’s very encouraging to see this improvement,” said district superintendent Dianne Turner at Tuesday’s school board meeting. She credited much of the district’s success to its efforts in identifying students who are struggling and at-risk early in their academic careers, and giving them the supports they need.

The school district has also hired a new Coordinator of Adolescent Learning to work with secondary department heads, as well as a Coordinator of Early Learning, to provide support for kindergarten teachers.

“While we have seen overall improvements, there are still areas of concern and we are determined to focus on these areas in order to increase student achievement even further,” said Turner in a press release on Tuesday. “We want to make sure that every single student in the Delta School District excels.”

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