Skidegate school does well in controversial ranking

  • Feb. 18, 2011 2:00 p.m.

Sk’aadgaa Naay elementary is doing better than more than half the schools in the province, according to the latest report card from the Fraser Institute. According to the report, the Skidegate school scored 6.4 out of 10, based on how well grade 4 and 7 students did on last year’s Foundation Skills Assessment of reading, writing and math. That score was Sk’aadgaa Naay’s highest in the past five years, and put the school at 335th on a list of 874 public and private schools in BC. It was the top performance among north coast public schools, with Prince Rupert’s five elementary schools scoring between 4.5 and 0. Angus Wilson, superintendent of the Haida Gwaii school district, said he was happy about the Sk’aadgaa Naay result, but cautioned that the Fraser Institute report is based a narrow amount of information. “You have to take that with a huge grain of salt,” he said. “It’s great to hear good things but… it’s just one very limited measure in the whole scheme of things.” Mr. Wilson said teachers have their own methods of assessing students, and that the district also measures student achievement by doing things like taking writing samples and administering math tests at the beginning and end of the school year. This provides a more accurate picture of how students progress throughout the year, he said. Administrators use the results to make decisions about where to focus resources, he said. The other elementary schools on the islands are not included in the most recent Fraser Institute report because the number of grade 4 and/or grade 7 students at each school was too low.

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