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Most Northwoods schools 'meet expectations' on first school report cards since pandemic

WAOW Television

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction released school report cards last week for the first time since the pandemic began.

Ninety-five percent of Wisconsin schools met, exceeded or far exceeded expectations.

That means the schools met targets in four priority areas: student achievement, growth, target group outcomes, and the number of students on track to graduate.

In the Northwoods, Arbor Vitae—Woodruff Elementary and North Lakeland Elementary had the highest ratings.

Both schools significantly exceeded expectations.

“Last year with COVID, we really focused on just being in person and really focusing on the basics,” Brent Jelinski, the district administrator at North Lakeland Elementary, said.

Because the school report card rating is based partly on the test scores of individual students, Jelinksi noted that the ratings at small schools can fluctuate more dramatically from year to year than they do at larger schools.

“As excited as we are about the high score, we’re just as excited about what our school provides that doesn’t go into the school report card," he said. "So we have six days of outdoor education, we do a lot things that don't go into the school report card that we like to celebrate just as much."

Not every school in the area received a high rating.

Antigo, Mercer, Ashland and Bayfield schools received two of five stars. That means they met few expectations.

DPI school report cards were suspended last year due to the pandemic.

Since then, some of the measures to calculate a school’s rating have changed, which makes it hard to compare to pre-pandemic ratings.

District NameOverall Accountability ScoreOverall Accountability Rating
Antigo Unified53.7Meets Few Expectations
Arbor Vitae-Woodruff Elementary83.5Significantly Exceeds Expectations
Ashland57Meets Few Expectations
Bayfield48.1Meets Few Expectations
Butternut70.6Exceeds Expectations
Chequamegon76.5Exceeds Expectations
Crandon60.6Meets Expectations
D C Everest Area70.3Exceeds Expectations
Elcho66.4Meets Expectations
Florence County67.3Meets Expectations
Hurley61.3Meets Expectations
Lac du Flambeau Elementary74.4Exceeds Expectations
Lakeland UHS59Meets Expectations
Medford Area Public69.9Meets Expectations
Mercer School50.8Meets Few Expectations
Merrill Area68.6Meets Expectations
Minocqua J178.7Exceeds Expectations
North Lakeland Elementary86.4Significantly Exceeds Expectations
Northland Pines78.3Exceeds Expectations
Phelps68.3Meets Expectations
Phillips74.3Exceeds Expectations
Rhinelander67Meets Expectations
Three Lakes73.7Exceeds Expectations
Tomahawk73.6Exceeds Expectations
Wausau68Meets Expectations
Weston67Meets Expectations
White Lake80Exceeds Expectations
Erin Gottsacker worked at WXPR as a Morning Edition host and reporter from December 2020 to January 2023. During her time at the station, Erin reported on the issues that matter most in the Northwoods.
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