Mason Schools moving in right direction, says Dickens

Agnes Hapka

October 19, 2013

MASON COUNTY — The school designations are in, and it’s mostly good news, says Suzanne Dickens.

Dickens, chief instructional leader for Mason County Schools, said via email to the Point Pleasant Register that she was “both encouraged and energized by the release of our school designations.”

Dickens said via email that results of the 2012-2013 West Virginia Educational Standards Test — also known as the WESTEST —indicate that proficiency rates and student growth are on the right track. No school in the county was named Priority or Support schools, which are the lowest two designations.

A statement from Dickens’ office said, “We were one of only 12 counties [that did not receive either of these designations].”

Beale Elementary and Point Pleasant Intermediate School were designated at the next level, as Focus schools, Dickens said. These two schools will receive various supports from Mason County Schools and Regional Educational Service Agency 2.

Three Mason County Schools received the designation Transition: Hannan High School; Ashton Elementary; New Haven Elementary.

The statement from Dickens’ office explained, “This designation means a majority of student groups have met the annual academic goals in math and English, or have met their goals in attendance or graduation rates, student academic growth, student success on WESTEST 2, and the learning gaps between students are small.”

“Most of our schools fell within the Success and Transition designations which show that we are on the right path for continuous school improvement.”

Four schools received the highest designation, Success: Leon Elementary; Roosevelt Elementary; Wahama High School; Point Pleasant High School.

“These schools are being considered for the designation reward,” added Dickens.

Dickens said she feels confident that the two Focus schools, Beale Elementary and Point Pleasant Intermediate Schools will be able to successfully utilize the school improvement model developed by the Office of Instruction at the West Virginia Department of Education.

“Mason County Board of Education and our schools will continue to work towards the life-long success for all students,” Dickens said.