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Principals laud scores

District officials hear optimistic outlooks from school heads touting improved test scores at first of two public meetings.

January 16, 2008|By Joseph Serna

In the first of two days of public meetings at the district’s headquarters, Newport-Mesa school district officials heard directly from school administrators about their plans to improve the schools in the next school year.

District officials Tuesday met with elementary, middle and high school principals in the Estancia and Corona del Mar high school enrollment zones. School leaders had noticeably optimistic goals for their students, bolstered by state and federal standardized test results released in the fall showing student improvement districtwide.

TeWinkle Middle School Principal Kirk Bauermeister said his school could expect a leap in its state Academic Performance Index scores next year, based on regular student assessments by school staff.

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He said school officials are reviewing their methods to make sure their findings are accurate.

Bauermeister was encouraged by a 43-point jump in the state scores to 718, putting them even closer to the state’s 800-point standard. Index scores are on a scale from 200 to 1,000. The school will continue to focus on English-language arts, Bauermeister said.

TeWinkle fell just short in federal standards under No Child Left Behind last year, and looks to reach the mark this year, he said.

“You can tell we’re counting every child, because every child counts,” Wilson Elementary School Principal Candy Sperling said. Sperling’s presentation, like every other administrators’, was framed in state and federal scores and school programs in place to help students learn core subjects like English and math.

Estancia High School Principal Phil D’Agostino qualified the coming school year as the year “the rubber meets the road” for Estancia. Students can expect more vocational classes and students with suspensions will serve them on campus, D’Agostino said.

Early College High School is working on an international program with a community college in England that will someday turn into an exchange program, Principal Kathy Slawson said.

Principals from the Costa Mesa and Newport Harbor enrollment zones begin meeting at 9:15 a.m. today at the district headquarters at 2985 Bear St., Costa Mesa.


JOSEPH SERNA may be reached at (714) 966-4619 or at joseph.serna@latimes.com.

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