The Star-Herald

SAD 1 announces hockey officials acceptance of MPA contract and goes over NAEP scores

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Presque Isle High School has enough players for a junior varsity hockey team for the first time in a while, the SAD 1 superintendent told the school board Tuesday, Nov. 22.

The new JV hockey team will play 10 games for the season commencing after varsity games.

Maine School Administrative District 1 board met on Tuesday, Nov. 22, after its regular meeting was postponed the week before by the season’s first significant snow storm.

The Hockey Officials Association and the Maine Principals Association came to a contract agreement last week, although the details of it have not been released.

“It was nice to see we could have something positive for our students and that cooler heads prevailed and did right by our students,” SAD 1 superintendent Ben Greenlaw said.

SAD 1 did not receive an electric school bus from grants given out by the Environmental Protection Agency, But Wells in southern Maine was awarded 11 electric school buses and other schools received two or three electric school buses. There are approximately 34 electric school buses across the state.

At the beginning of the SAD 1 school board meeting, Jennifer Bourassa presented a review on data collected from the National Association of Educational Progress test scores in math and English language arts.

Maine students are at the national norm and only dropped two points overall, according to Bourassa. Grade 4 reading was the lowest at 212.81 out of 500, compared with Maine’s average score of 233.07.

In 2022, Maine is at 62 percent for the ELA average, with MSAD 1’s ELA at 65 percent. Overall MSAD 1 scores are improving but are at the lowest percentiles between third and eighth grades.

“Our scores are looking fine. I mean there is always room for a little improvement,” Bourassa said.

NAEP test scores showed Mapleton Elementary had a small 1 percent drop in ELA scores and a 5 percent drop in math, while Zippel Elementary had a 7 percent increase in ELA scores and 11 percent increase in math. Presque Isle Middle School had a 1 percent increase in ELA scores and a 3 percent increase in math. Presque Isle High School had no significant increase in ELA scores and a 4 percent increase in math.

The second grade class at Pine Street Elementary had poorer scores in literacy and were part of the children most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. A plan has been implemented to address the issue.

For economically disadvantaged students, only 6 percent had a high range of scores compared to 18 percent of non-economically disadvantaged students. Around 29 percent of economically disadvantaged students scored in the lowest range compared to 15 percent of non-economically disadvantaged students.

For SAD 1 in math, there was only a small difference in scores between genders and in ELA female students are significantly more likely to be in a higher score range from their male classmates.

Greenlaw reviewed the annual harvest survey at local farms. Students madea total of $183,456, with 67 Presque Isle High School students working for the harvest. It was $20,000 more than 2021 with two fewer students working the harvest.

In 2022, around 144 students worked non-harvest jobs, which is about 31 percent of the student body. In 2021, only 101 students worked non-harvest jobs. Almost all students were surveyed, totalling 468 students.

There were 30 students working at the educational farm, up 15 from last year.

School board members Curtis Culberson, Lucy Richard, Dan Edgecomb and Paul Saija emerged as the winners in the uncontested November election. New school board members are Jenny Paul in District 16, Keith Wilcox in District 8 and Cole Staples in District 6. 

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