Good news for D181 on School Report Cards

Students show growth, all seven elementary schools rank in top 10 percent of the nation


Last updated 11/9/2022 at 4:56pm | View PDF

Community Consolidated School District 181 continues to be among the highest-performing districts in the state, according to the 2022 Illinois School Report Cards.

All seven of the district's elementary schools earned an exemplary designation and the two middle schools are rated commendable. When the last report was released in 2019, the district had six exemplary schools and three commendable ones.

"We are so thrilled that seven of our schools fell into the exemplary range this year," said Tracey Miller, director of assessment, instruction and evaluation. "I'm excited and encouraged to see students growing and achieving at such high levels. It's definitely an honor to be among the top 10 percent of schools and school districts in the state of Illinois."

Only 305 of the state's 3,052 elementary schools earned the exemplary designation. Student growth - which "We are proud of our students' continual growth and progress in all areas," he stated. "Our educators continue to focus on elevating our curriculum and boosting student achievement, and, most importantly, meeting the needs of each and every child." describes how much a student improved compared to academic peers who started at the same level - is a key component of the ranking. Growth in math and reading accounts for 50 percent of the designation, compared to a 15 percent allocation for math and reading proficiency.

District 181 student growth rates were 56 percent in English language arts and 53 percent in math, compared to state growth rates of 50 percent. This means D181 students grew more than most of their peers.

"We are going to continue to make sure we look at how all of our students grow," Miller said.

Student Growth Percentile slowed during the pandemic, according to information from the Illinois State Board of Education on report card data.

"But the 2022 baseline SGP shows that students' growth has rebounded and even slightly outperformed pre-pandemic levels," the ISBE website states.

Districtwide, 72 percent of students demonstrated proficiency in ELA, 71 percent in math and 82 percent in science, far above the state averages. (See sidebar for individual schools' percentages.)

The district's efforts to focus on reading and math instruction when students attended school in person only half the day during COVID-19 made a difference, Miller said.

"We used our time very specifically, so when students were in class or participating with their teachers that half of the day, they were focusing on their reading and math instruction," she said.

Students' lessons in science and social studies the second half of the day were asynchronous. Special education and English language learner students spent the full day at school, meaning they didn't lose instructional time to receive special service.

"We're really proud of the model that we were able to create and believe that contributed to students being able to maintain their achievement and continue their growth. We're lucky to have all these resources to provide for our students," Miller said.

The district will continue to monitor school attendance, she noted.

"We can't control if a student gets hurt or if they get sick during the course of the year, but we can commit to collaborating with families to ensure that students get the supports they need and help families ensure that their students are in attendance as much of the school year as possible," she said. "We definitely had students who were out for COVID, but we were lucky to be able to provide them with remote instruction."

The next step is for principals to meet with Miller to go through data for their schools.

"The principals then work with their building leadership teams as well as the individual teachers to look at needs of students, needs of the building and trends they see," Miller said.

Educators also look at MAP test scores, the Similar Schools Report and other data when developing school improvement plans, Miller said.

Superintendent Hector Garcia noted the district's continued emphasis on improvement in a press release.

"We are proud of our students' continual growth and progress in all areas," he stated. "Our educators continue to focus on elevating our curriculum and boosting student achievement, and, most importantly, meeting the needs of each and every child."

Miller already is looking ahead to 2023.

"We're hoping to continue to grow the number of exemplary buildings within our district," she said.

Miller will present the report card data at the 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 19, board meeting at Hinsdale Middle School.

Author Bio

Pamela Lannom is editor of The Hinsdalean

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 630-323-4422, ext. 104


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