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Salmon River moves off state list of focus schools

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FORT COVINGTON –– Salmon River Central School District has made enough progress since 2012 to be moved off the list of focus schools districts with the New York State Education Department.

Since 2012, SRCS has been doing school improvement plans for the last three years on a district and school level for the junior/senior high school.

“We received good news the reason we started doing these plans in the first place was because we became a focus school a few years ago and we were notified that we have made progress over the last two years according to the school report card, so we are now eligible to come off the list,” Director of Instruction Angela Robert said.

SRCS Superintendent Jane Collins said, “We can apply for the high school to not be a focus school district and the state has to agree with us. They put us on a list of good standing and they need to say that they are going to remove you. We have to go through that motion.

Ms. Robert said she has seen the benefits of the school doing these improvement plans.

“I am really looking forward to that because the staff has done a lot of work and the students are becoming more successful. This plan after doing this for three years we are on role and we are making a lot of progress,” she said.

Ms, Robert explained that in the high school the professional climate and collaboration among the teachers has really grown since the implementation of these plans.

“My first instinct was that ‘Oh no we can’t stop now.’ As I read further in the information, they said to follow through with your improvement plan and the grants they use for this will still be available this coming year,” Ms. Robert said.

She said the paper work to get the high school off the list need to be filled with the state by Monday. The improvement plans were due to the state by last Thursday.

Back in 2012 New York State Education Department issued a list of 70 school districts throughout the state they identified as focus schools.

These districts were identified because of their low performance and lack of progress in English language arts and math combined. These schools were also identified by accountability groups such as racial/ethnic groups, low-income students, English language learners and students with disabilities.

At SRCS, the focus school was listed as the junior/senior high school.

Back in 2012, Ms. Collins said SRCS received the label as a focus district because of the high number of students from poor families that don’t do well academically.

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