Lawrence-Lawson Elementary School has received a Wisconsin School of Recognition award for the 2012-13 academic year. The Sparta Area School District school was among 132 Wisconsin schools recognized for success in educating students from low-income families.
“Congratulations on a strong start to the 2012-13 school year,” State Superintendent Tony Evers said in a news release. “These schools are being recognized for their work to break the link between poverty and low academic achievement through rigorous programming and attention to student needs. Their efforts align with our Agenda 2017 goals: to improve graduation rates, reduce dropout rates, and close college and career readiness gaps.”
The schools receiving awards have some of the highest poverty rates in the state based on free and reduced price school lunch data. Student achievement in reading and mathematics was above average for schools from similarly sized districts, schools, grade configurations, and poverty levels. All award-winning schools receive federal Title I funding to provide services to high numbers or high percentages of economically disadvantaged children.
“Through this award, the State of Wisconsin recognizes the additional challenges of educating students disadvantaged by low socioeconomic status. Staff at Lawrence-Lawson Elementary and throughout the Sparta Area School District does not use this as an excuse, but strive daily to close this achievement gap. It is another indicator of the good work that is being done in our schools,” Superintendent John Hendricks said.
Schools meeting all criteria will receive a plaque at an Oct. 2 awards ceremony at the State Capitol and $1,000 for use by the school. During the awards ceremony, eight schools will receive flags for earning the Wisconsin School of Recognition award for five consecutive years. Another 20 schools have received the award for more than five years; one school — Marengo Valley School in the Ashland School District — has earned the award for all 10 years of the program. This year’s 132 Wisconsin School of Recognition Award recipients include 99 elementary schools, 25 middle or junior high schools, and eight high schools. Lawrence-Lawson has received the award for three consecutive years.
“It is an honor to have received this recognition for the third year in a row. As principal of Lawrence-Lawson I attribute the recognition to the partnerships we have with students, teachers, support staff, parents and the community,” Principal Missy Herek said.
“In addition, professional development focused on Response to Intervention, Positive Behavior Intervention Supports and data-driven professional learning communities have proven to be instrumental in the success of our students,” Herek said.