Local News

WHS has a new girls’ basketball coach

Dane Vincent will be the basketball coach for the girls’ team at Wrangell High School.

Members of the Wrangell Public School board met during a regular meeting Monday night. After about an hour of discussion, officials moved into an executive session to take public comment about Vincent’s appointment. WPS Administrative Assistant Kim Powell said the session lasted about two-and-a-half hours. Board members heard from more than a half-dozen parents and students during that time.

Superintendent Rich Rhodes said he recommended Vincent for the position. Vincent will be able to begin coaching without official board approval because of that recommendation.

In other business, the board shared the district’s Report Card to the Public showing the results of standardized testing. Diane O’Brien is on the Parent Advisory Board. She said she would like to see a comparison for Annual Yearly Progress, or AYP to years past.

“We have a state target. We’re almost there for language arts, a little bit below in mathematics. What is our trend? Have we dropped below what’s expected of us versus one year? Is this a concern? Or are we doing well,” she asked.

Superintendent Rhodes said showing trends from one year to another doesn’t give enough of a picture. He said providing numbers for three-to-five years and explaining what the data means is best.

“Last year we showed 90 percent proficient in third grade and this year we show 80 percent. You would start to be really worried and say we dropped 10 percent proficiency. But in reality, we had 18 students. So if you have 1.8 percent, that’s not even two students, who do not meet those proficiencies, then you drop that. And it just so happened that two of those students are special-needs students,” he said.

Rhodes said because the number of students who took the tests is so small, it is easier to see larger dips or spikes. He explained to parents that the district looks closely at individual performance to determine a student’s need for additional instruction. Rhodes pointed out he has heard from other districts throughout the state who wish they had Wrangell’s scores.

Because of this week’s executive session, board officials decided to postpone the remainder of the meeting until next week. The school board will meet again Monday Nov. 26.

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