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Nevis School's 538 students once again exceed state average for skills tests in math and reading

The Nevis School Board heard an overall review of the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment results this week, Jodi Sandmeyer assuring members, students "are doing very, very well, whether you look at an individual class, or by grade."

Nevis students in all grades were 70 percent proficient in math, compared with a statewide average of 65 percent.

Of the 223 students tested, 25 (11 percent) earned an excellent, 132 (59 percent) met proficiency standards, 47 (21 percent) partially met them and 19 (9 percent) did not meet the criteria. This compares with statewide percentages of 24, 41, 20 and 14, respectively.

In reading, 80 percent of Nevis students in all grades were deemed proficient, with a statewide percentage of 70.

Of the 270 students tested, 40 percent were considered excellent, 39 percent met standards, 12 percent partially met them and 8 percent did not meet.

This compares with statewide percentages of 42, 34, 15 and 9, respectively.

Nevis third and seventh graders were slightly below state percentages in math and reading.

In other action, the board:

n Approved a contract with Bill Dent as middle school special education instructor.

The position became available with the resignation of Dana Morris. Five candidates were interviewed.

Dent is licensed as an elementary teacher but will be granted a variance to serve in the position for the next school year.

n Reviewed the evaluation of school superintendent Steve Rassier conducted by the board earlier in August.

Areas of strengths were identified as his managing of district finances, recruiting and hiring staff, establishing quality relationships with local administrators and Department of Education and communication with board members.

Points identified by the board as needing "increased emphasis" are stronger presence in the community, increased use of community and staff resources to complement the district and its activities, continued review and updating of job descriptions and an improved evaluation process for district employees.

"This is my mission for 2012-13," Rassier said of the recommendations.

n Approved contracting with Heidi Wormley as a Nevis School District employee to work as a licensed social worker. The school previously contracted her services through Stellher Human Services.

n Approved hiring Krista Platz as a half-time school/home interventionist.

n Accepted the resignation of Kristen Sauser as educational assistant. "Ms. Sauser has been an asset to our staff who will be available to sub later in the year," Rassier advised the board.

n Accepted the resignation of Angie Otterness as educational assistant and substitute teacher.

n Accepted the resignation of Andy Lindow as junior varsity and 9th grade boys basketball coach.

n Approved a 10 cent increase in lunch prices. Students in grades K-6 will pay $1.85, grades 7-12 students pay $2.05.

Ticket and pass prices will remain the same. Driver's education classroom fee was upped from $40 to $50.

Classified substitutes' hourly wage was raised from $9 to 9.50.

n Approved the staff handbook and student and parent handbook for 2012-13.

n Awarded honorariums of $1,000 and $250 to Jodi Sandmeyer and Lynne Gustafson, respectively, for their work on the school's centennial celebration.

n Learned enrollment is currently at 538 students.