Berthoud Elementary and Ivy Stockwell recognized as “Distinguished Schools”

By Aaron Reynolds

The Surveyor

Berthoud continues to remain one of the more sought-after places to reside on the front range, thanks to its tight-knit community, picturesque view of Longs Peak, rich agricultural history, and top-ranked schools, the latter of which was recently recognized by the Thompson School District (TSD) at the Sept. 20 board of education meeting.

Ivy Stockwell and Berthoud Elementary each received the honor of being named a “Distinguished School” within TSD, while Berthoud High School (BHS) just missed out on the classification.

The announcement of the award was further punctuated by the news only six schools in the district received the distinction, once again demonstrating Berthoud’s advanced placement in childhood education.

The “Accredited with Distinction” label was created this year by Thompson in order to acknowledge high achieving schools during the 2016-17 school year within the School Performance Frameworks (SPFs).

According to Dawne R. Huckaby – director of assessment and accountability for TSD – in prior years the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) has identified schools as “distinguished” based on information and data contained in the SPFs. However, this year the CDE made no such distinction, ultimately leaving it up to the district to recognize high-performing schools.

Thompson opted to maintain the same 74 percent or higher percentile used to gauge the districts within Colorado. According to Huckaby, the SPF for elementary and middle schools is comprised of Academic Achievement (40 percent of the total score) and Academic Growth (60 percent). Ivy Stockwell was third in the district at 88.3 percent, while Berthoud Elementary received 82.8 percent. BHS just missed out at 72.5 percent, and was the only high school within the nine being named “Accredited with Distinction,” or honorable mention.

“These schools are not only well above the state average in their percentage of students meeting the achievement target at each grade level, but also are well above the state average in students that meet or exceed annual growth targets,” Huckaby commented.

“It’s really an amazing honor to be on the list with all the other great schools,” Ivy Stockwell principal, Rick Bowles, remarked. “It’s a testament to the hard work by the entire staff, not just the teachers, but everyone at Ivy. We are a very lucky community. We have a lot of community support.”

Bowles was quick to compliment Berthoud Elementary, inclusion on the list, adding “It was good to see them right up there with us. It just goes to show the Berthoud community as a whole, we’re in it to do the best we can for our students.”

Berthoud Elementary principal, Melanie Patterson, shared Bowles assessment: “Our teachers and staff are incredibly hard working and dedicated in their desire to empower every learner. It is also fantastic to share the “Distinguished Schools” acknowledgment with Ivy Elementary. The tremendous support of the Berthoud community is encouraging to all of our students. We are grateful for the volunteers, financial supporters, and advocates for education in our community that share in this wonderful recognition.”

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