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Panther Post: Park Rapids Schools continues to thrive

Glenn Chiodo

Over the years Park Rapids Area Schools has continued to thrive while working to meet state and federal mandates.

Mandatory testing has changed the way we operate. The positive is that we take a closer look at how we're performing in certain areas. However, by simply looking at scores that might have to do with attendance or other circumstances the testing hasn't always been useful.

We've never been against having expectations but we think there's a better way to measure success. The state of Minnesota has requested a waiver from the federal No Child Left Behind requirements. We'll see what comes out of that request.

Park Rapids has been in and out of making Annual Yearly Progress over the years but has overall seen progress and I'm proud of it. Our test scores have been very solid.

It really comes down to what you're doing over the long haul.

Park Rapids Area Schools provides a lot of different programs. We offer a wide range to our kids and each year we evaluate where we're at and look at where we can improve.

For us, the emergency of 8th Hour, expanded Community Education offerings and other activities moves us closer to our goal all the time and that's something we can feel good about.

We, as a school, need to feel good about our partnerships. The school partners with the hospital, local businesses and others to make sure our students have the best education possible. It's been a real solid collaboration.

Enrollment has been solid and the school is in much better financial shape than it had been several years ago. We don't take these things for granted, though.

We have built a solid foundation and hope to continue building on that for years to come.