Education data compiled by the state offers a comparison of schools in the Wenatchee district with similar schools in Washington. 

The school board on Tuesday was given a presentation that rates the performance of schools and compares them to other schools with similar student populations, socio-economic status and multi-language learners. 

The information was compiled by the Washington School Improvement Framework (WSIF), which identifies how schools can improve the education of students.  

The Framework combines as many as nine indicators (such as graduation rates, attendance, and proficiency on state tests in math and English language arts) into a 1-10 score. The school's score then determines the state's support for the school to improve. 

Schools that score between 6-7 are noted for their higher performance while schools scoring between 7-10 are recognized for especially high scores. 

The School Improvement Framework categorized each Wenatchee school with nine other schools statewide that have similar student populations, English language learner populations, percent of students enrolled in special education programs and percent on free and reduced lunch. 

Wenatchee High School was the second highest ranking school among the nine others it was categorized with, earning a relatively high-performance score of 6.95. 

The district's middle school schools had differing performance levels. 

Pioneer Middle School was fifth out of 10 similar schools with a middle range 5.20 performance score.  

Orchard Middle School was sixth out of 10 with a lower score of 3.45 

Foothills Middle School was second out of 10 similar schools and had an especially high score of 7.20. 

The district’s seven elementary schools also had differing performance scores. 

Lewis and Clark Elementary was fourth out of 10 similar schools with a middle range 5.50 performance score 

Washington Elementary was fourth in its group with a lower score of 3.70. 

Mission View Elementary was third in its group of similar schools with a middle score of 5.70. 

Lincoln Elementary was 10th in its category and was the lowest performing Wenatchee school with a score of 2.15. 

John Newberry Elementary was second in its group with a performance score of 5.65. 

Columbia Elementary was first in its group and had a relatively high score of 6.5. Columbia is at the end of this school year in a budget cut by the district.  

Sunnyslope was second in its category but had the highest score of all schools in the Wenatchee district at 9.38. It was grouped in with schools that have an especially low percentage of English language learners. 

Columbia Elementary and Mission View Elementary had the highest percentage of English language learners and students qualifying for free and reduced lunches, followed by Lincoln Elementary and Lewis and Clark Elementary. 

Alternative Learning Experience (ALE) schools Westside High and Valley Academy were not compared to similar schools in the data released. 

Westside High had a Washington School Improvement Framework score of 3.5 while Valley Academy had a score of 7.5   

ALE schools are designed for students who attend the Tech Center or who desire an alternative experience during the day.  

Board member Maria Iñiguez said the Improvement Framework data failed to consider the difference in the migrant population between the east and west side of the state. 

"I think a significant difference between (the) east side and west side that is not factored in here is our migrant population," said Iñiguez. "And we see higher migrant identified students on the east side of the state versus the west side of the state." 

Board member Martin Barron thinks the data can help the district improve. 

“The value is in where it gives us pointers as to where we need to act," said Barron. "And (if) we get rid of false impressions, then I think we're on a good track."   

Superintendent Dr. Kory Kalahar said the Wenatchee Schools Strategic Plan ties in with the overall Washington School Improvement Framework. 

"Proficiency, growth, attendance, multi-lingual student performance, graduation, ninth grade success, dual credit for high school, that is kind of all the things that are incorporated in our strategic plan as well, comprehensively looking at our district," said Kalahar. " 

The Washington School Improvement Framework will have another release of similar data next year. It compiles the information in three-year cycles that update every year. 

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Gallery Credit: Reesha Cosby

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