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New school rating system shows Guadalupe Union as low performing

Elsa Ross’ fourth grade classroom at Mary Buren Elementary was empty when we visited but she says when students are there, she drills them with standardized test questions to determine their needs.

“That’s really great because it gives me an idea overall of where the kids are at, what they’re still struggling in, what they’re doing well in, what I can move on or go back and focus on,” Ross explains.

Even with preparation from teachers like Ross, the new ratings system from the California Department of Education shows some Guadalupe students still struggle.

The dashboard as it’s called, is a five color rating system. In Guadalupe, the area in red shows a drop of over 10% in the scores for English as a second language students; these students make up a large number of the Guadalupe district.

“If I go to Japan, I don’t speak Japanese and even if I was there for two or three years – it’s not my native language. [So] I’m sure I wouldn’t do that great either but you hope that you see progress over time with students,” explains Ed Cora, Superintendent of the Guadalupe Union School District.

Cora says that while there are some areas showing they’ve dropped, these results compare scores from the last three years and don’t take into account the most recent tests.

“If you look at from last year to this year which will come out in the Fall, we increased by 11% but that wasn’t shown either so it’s old data but it is data,” he tells us.

Elsa Ross believes there are also things parents can be doing at home to help reinforce the lessons she’s trying to teach.

“We have different websites that we can provide for them where they can see videos on how to provide support for that school or concept or even touching base with the teachers. I just think if we all work together, we can work on improving and getting better little by little,” Ross says.

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