Washtenaw Intermediate School District

M-STEP Replacing MEAP For Some Students In Spring

Nov 20, 2014
michigan.gov

Michigan is saying goodbye to the MEAP test this coming spring.  Washtenaw County school districts appear ready to roll out the new online Michigan Student Test of Educational Progress, or M-STEP test.

 

Naomi Norman is Executive Director of Achievement Services for the Washtenaw Intermediate School District. 

She says M-STEP is more than a bunch of multiple choice questions - students are going to have to answer some questions in writing.

WISD Holding Bus Driver Job Fair

Nov 20, 2014

The Washtenaw Intermediate School District is holding a Bus Driver Job Fair Saturday with a goal of finding 15-20 additional drivers.


Washtenaw Intermediate School District
Washtenaw Intermediate School District

It's more than three weeks into the school year and the Washtenaw Intermediate School District is still looking to add permanent bus drivers.  Finding enough school bus drivers is a lingering issue. 


Bob Eccles

With the start of classes just a few days away,  Ypsilanti Community Schools would still like to hire  five to seven more bus drivers.

 

The Washtenaw Intermediate School District handles transportation for Y-C-S students. 

Ann Arbor Public Schools
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor and Whitmore Lake Public Schools voters will decide in November if annexation plans should go forward.  If they do it will be the second time a pair of Washtenaw Intermediate School Districts have merged in the last few years.  


wihi.org

Washtenaw International High School students accomplished something really special in the latest round of Michigan Merit Exam and ACT testing: they were tops in the county and number two in the state with their composite ACT score of 27-point-three.

Not bad, considering the program is barely three years old. 

Principal Nhu Do says the results are impressive.

"It really is attributable to all the hard work that the staff, students, faculty members, district supporters have really put in place to ensure the success of these students."

michigan.gov/mde/

Washtenaw County students continue to show improvement in the Michigan Merit Exam.

Washtenaw Intermediate School District communication specialist Emma Jackson says improvements among the class of 2015 were seen in reading, writing, science and social studies, while math proficiency stayed about the same.

"Our reading scores really stand out at 72 percent proficient," Jackson says, "and they're some of the highest in the state."

wash.k12.mi.us/

A proposed increase in per-pupil funding for K-12 schools would actually leave many area districts at the same or even lower funding levels next fiscal year.

That's according to Washtenaw Intermediate School District Superintendent Scott Menzel, who says that would be the net result of moving from a funding formula in which poor districts get twice as large of a funding increase as wealthier districts, to a formula where the minimum foundation grant is boosted by $175. 

emich.edu/eca

Early College Alliance students are ranked sixth out of more than 800 high schools on Michigan Merit Exam math and reading test scores.

The rankings for the program at Eastern Michigan University are from the website schooldigger.com, which last year ranked the ECA 41st in the state. 

Washtenaw Educational Options Consortium Director Dave Dugger says the jump was due to a focus on improving literacy education, and spending one day a week understanding and practicing writing for the ACT. 

Washtenaw Intermediate School District

The Washtenaw Educational Options Consortium (WEOC) has named Nhu Do as the Principal/WEOC Program Director for Washtenaw International High School, an International Baccalaureate program.

wash.k12.mi.us

The Washtenaw Intermediate School District is hosting a pair of information sessions to familiarize the community with Michigan's mischooldata.org website.


'Touch A Truck' Motors Into Ypsilanti

May 7, 2014
washtenawsuccessby6.org

The 6th annual Success by 6 Great Start Collaborative "Touch a Truck" event rolls into Ypsilanti Saturday.

Children and their families will have the chance to get up close and personal with more than 35 vehicles from organizations like the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office, Ypsilanti District Library, Huron Valley Ambulance and Recycle Ann Arbor.

Bob Eccles

The Ypsilanti Community Schools Board of Education has named Associate Superintendent Laura Lisiscki as the successor to Scott Menzel as Superintendent, at least on an interim basis.

The board Monday night unanimously voted to have Lisiscki take over as Superintendent after Menzel steps down at the end of June. 

Lisiscki will lead the district into its second year, and the Board of Education would take up the question of whether to make her tenure permanent or search for a replacement after elections in November.

twitter.com

Ypsilanti Community Schools will be in the market for a new Superintendent at the end of June.

That's when Scott Menzel steps down from that position - a transition that was part of the plan when the Ypsilanti and Willow Run school districts merged. 

Menzel says the school year isn't over, but he thinks Ypsilanti Community Schools is in pretty good shape.

Patrick Holubick

The Superintendent of Ypsilanti Community Schools says his district is working in the face of challenges such as charter schools and Schools of Choice to become a top option for cradle to career education.

Scott Menzel says Ann Arbor Public Schools' Schools of Choice push poses a challenge, as does the legislature's removing the cap on the number of charter schools in Michigan. 

Menzel says choice is good - to a point.

WISD Helping To Mark Autism Awareness Month

Mar 31, 2014
liub.autismspeaks.org/welcome

April is Autism Awareness Month, and the Washtenaw Intermediate School District will be helping to "Light It Up Blue" to spread the word.

High Point School and the Teaching and Learning Center on the WISD campus are participating in the campaign this year.

High Point teachers are posting information on bulletin boards to raise awareness of the Autism Speaks campaign, and the standard light bulbs in the building's main conference room - which are visible from the outside - will be switched out with blue bulbs.

WISD Holding Playground Improvements Fundraiser

Mar 26, 2014
wash.k12.mi.us

The Washtenaw Intermediate School District is holding a charity event to raise money for upgrades to the playground equipment at High Point School.

The first annual Run, Walk and Roll event takes place April 19th on the WISD campus, 1819 S. Wagner Road in Ann Arbor.

Katrina Stewart, a teacher for special needs students and avid runner, is organizing the event.

wash.kis.mi.us

The Washtenaw Intermediate School District's Education Project for Homeless Youth (EPHY) has received a $2,500 grant from the Kiwanis Club of Ann Arbor Foundation.

The money will help the program buy vouchers from local shoe vendors that students can exchange for footwear.

www.wash.k12.mi.us

Parents and the Washtenaw County community at large have the chance to learn more about Active Shooter training designed to ensure a uniform response to those types of threats county-wide.

A pair of public forums this month will introduce the public to the ALICE active shooter training model that’s been adopted locally.  ALICE stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate.

The intense ALICE training model was adopted in response to a dramatic increase in school violence and school shootings across the nation.

As the state debates how best to have school district make up snow days, there's no question how the superintendent of the Washtenaw Intermediate School District would prefer to address the issue.  

The Superintendent of the Washtenaw Intermediate School District says he's glad to see an increase in funding for K-12 education in Governor Rick Snyder's budget proposal. Scott Menzel says the proposal would bring an increase of $83 to $111 in per-pupil funding to school districts in the county. Menzel says with several county districts working with small fund balances, and one district operating at a deficit, it's difficult to determine the actual impact the additional state money will have on students. 

Menzel believes the most important part of the Governor's education funding plan is a $65,000,000 investment in the Great Start Readiness Program for low-income Pre-school students.

Emma Jackson, WISD

Homeless students in the Washtenaw Intermediate School District will have something to smile about this Christmas thanks to a generous donation from the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research's ISR Feeds group. 

The group dropped off about 150 gift bags Friday. 

WISD Communication Specialist Emma Jackson says this is the fifth year the ISR has helped out.

The donation will benefit kids in the Education Project for Homeless Youth, a non-profit organization that provides supprot to students who are homeless.

Ann Arbor Public Schools will continue to participate in three county-wide, alternative programs for high school students.   The Board of Education Thursday night voted to maintain it's relationship with the consortium that includes the Early College Alliance (ECA), Washtenaw International High School (WI-High) and Widening Achievement for Youth (WAY) program.  The resolution calls on Superintendent Jeanice Swift to target no more than 10 spots in the WAY program, 35 new slots in the E-C-A, and 40 new slots for Wi-High.  District officials had called into question whether Ann Arbor should continue in the consortium, citing a lack of transparency and communication with Washtenaw Intermediate School District officials that op[erate the program. WISD Superintendent Scott Menzel apologized for communication issues and says they will do better in the future. Ann Arbor school board members also accepted some of the blame in the communication break-down and for missing consortium meetings.  For a full report, listen below.

Ann Arbor Public Schools have still not determined how much they will participate in three county-wide high school options.  The school board last night postponed a vote until next week's study session on how many seats they will use in the Early College Alliance, Washtenaw International High School, and Widening Advancement for Youth.  The delay comes with Ann Arbor Schools wanting to use many fewer seats than the consortium has allocated to the district. 

Superintendent Jeanice Swift says much of the confusion has been blamed on the superintendent transition, but she believes both parties are to blame for the communications issues.  Swift recommended the district use 80 seats total in the ECA and Wi-Hi and 15 for WAY.  The allocation approved by the consortium last month would give Ann Arbor 80 new seats in the ECA  alone, and a straight lottery for Wi-Hi.

David Dugger is the Washtenaw Intermediate School District Director of Secondary Options.  Dugger says the other consortium members  in October opted to continue to use a straight lottery for Wi-Hi and a proportional system to assign slots to the ECA.


The program that offers students from low-income families the chance to enjoy a free or reduced cost lunch has not been affected by the partial federal government shutdown - yet. WEMU's Bob Eccles has the story.

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