Number of pupils climbs by three

STRATFORD – Enrollment at Stratford school shows a slight increase for this school year, according to figures Superintendent Sarah Binder shared with the school board there at the monthly meeting on Wednesday.

Although the numbers continue to fluctuate as school districts and the Department of Education sort through figures, certified enrollment at Stratford for 2013-2014 stands at 171, an increase of three students. Numbers have been climbing slowly since a low of 164 in 2011-2012.

The agenda was brief on Wednesday. Binder told the board of an interest school districts in Hamilton county have in developing a regional academy for technical training. Eagle Grove and Clarion-Goldfield schools are also part of the consortium. A regional academy would offer training in advanced manufacturing, welding, and education, according to Binder.

Several representatives from interested districts have visited some academies and have also recently looked into the Eagle Grove armory, which is for sale.

Results on student achievement were reviewed with the board. “I’m really pleased with where we are starting this year taking into account where we ended last year,” Binder commented.

In the area of professional growth and development, staff has continued their work as the model school for implementing Concept-Based Curriculum and Instruction. The format and materials with leader teams will be shared from other schools involved in the same work in the Prairie Lakes AEA.

Rob Stone of Drake University was in Stratford to observe a professional growth and development class and was impressed with the work being done, the commitment from the teachers, and the high levels of professional learning. Binder said he was very complimentary on what teachers were doing that day and “just in general.”

In other business Wednesday, the board:

Took no action on a request from a local resident to store a vehicle in the school bus barn.

Heard a report on the first Family Night that was held at the school on September 24 for the youngest children and their families. The September evening events were a big hit and very well attended, said Binder. Family Nights are held four times per year.

Was reminded that the next informal meeting with the Webster City school board is set for Oct. 28.