Outstanding effort by three students in Homewood District 153 won them top honors Monday, Sept. 24, as each was presented the Tom Dockweiler Award.
Tom Dockweiler, for whom the award is named, retired from the board after 20 years of service. During his tenure he said it was always his desire to “raise the bar” to move the district forward.
This award is given to students who do the same types of things. These students were judged for their outstanding scores on district testing that showed exceptional improvements.
Second grader Malachi Walton came into Willow School not caring much about learning, said Principal Melissa Lawson, but with special attention through the district’s Response Through Intervention Program that offers students the special help they need to succeed, and work at home with his parents, Amanda and Jeremy Walton, Malachi grew the most of any student at Willow.
Lawson said Willow students are given the district’s STAR assessments in fall and again in spring. On average, students grow 220 points over the course of a year, but Malachi showed 489 points growth.
Churchill School Principal Nikki Kerr described winner Quinn Hanna as a kind and caring person who is a good friend and a leader among her peers. At Churchill students take the STAR assessments in fall, winter and spring. Growth for most students registers at 220 points, but Quinn grew by over 600 points.
Quinn is the daughter of Mark and Kate Hanna.
Phoenix McCoy, the daughter of Marsha and Christopher McCoy Sr., won the Dockweiler Award at James Hart School. Principal Scott McAlister said staff check scores to recognize those who show significant growth and Phoenix was the student who recorded the highest growth among her peers last year. Her percentile rank in reading went up 21 percent and in math 12 percent.
McAlister said Phoenix is an excellent student with an outstanding grade point average.
“What you accomplished is pretty exciting,” Dockweiler told the honorees. “I’m hoping the accomplishments will stick with you and you keep going.”