Five years ago @oostburgschools targeted District goals specifically around student achievement as measured by the ACT. There were many reasons for focusing on this goal including feedback we received from a 2012 community-wide survey in which responses prioritized areas for focus based on the following question:
To provide a quality education for all students, what should be the priority over the next five years?
60% Prepare students for life after high school
56% Keep technology up to date
50% Help students with career planning
45% Prepare students for college
45% Recruit and retain high quality staff in an increasingly competitive market
Although there is no such thing as a perfect assessment tool our leadership team comprised of teachers and administrators decided to align our district strategic plans around the ACT. In the five year period since this focused work began, our district has made dramatic progress resulting in our current 93.3 percentile rating when comparing OSD ACT scores to the 481 districts in Wisconsin. This means that Oostburg ranked 32nd out of 481 schools in our state!
Without question, one of the highest leverage strategies resulting in our growth has been a focus on vertical teacher teams where K-12 staff members have worked together to improve the scaffolding of our curriculum across grade levels. Although our efforts are embedded into day to day routines, the collaboration which occurs on early release and inservice days has provided some of the most significant opportunities for improvement.
The ACT is only one measure of success, but it is exciting to see that our targeted work has resulted in truly extraordinary improvement. Our results are uncommon and a testament to the focused work from our staff and students. Early data for the class of 2018 is providing evidence that our results will continue to rise as we prepare our students to be ready to fulfill our mission. Our academic accomplishments provide just one more reason to say, “It’s a great day to be a Dutchman!”
Our OSD mission is to prepare students to be productive and positive contributors to our society and world by ensuring that all students learn at high levels.
Kevin Bruggink, Superintendent