beaver.k12.ut.us

To create the elementary school ranking analysis, Deseret Digital Media (DDM), which manages the websites for KSL, Deseret News and Deseret Book, took the average percentage of students in each public school in Utah who scored above proficient on language arts and math and ranked them accordingly. These are the top-scoring schools with more than 250 students. A total of 617 elementary schools were analyzed. See the 10 lowest-scoring schools in the state. EMAIL: slenz@desnews.com, jferguson@desnews.com Twitter: @SaraLenz, @JoeyFerguson

10 Belknap — Beaver, Beaver School District
beaver.k12.ut.us

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 92 percent

Total Pop: 501
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 52.08 percent

White: 430, Black: 2, Hispanic: 61, Asian/pacific islander: 6, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 2

Brady Fails, principal of Belknap, said they have been steadily increasing in test scores since they adapted the state’s literacy plan. They also use guided reading and literacy groups that allow students to learn with other students who are at the same reading level. The teachers guide the students while reading a book selected for the group.

Fails said in order to have success in education “takes a whole school of people dedicated to bettering the lives of the people in the school.”

(In the photo: 2011-2012 Beaver County School Board - President Nicholas Dotson, VP Carolyn White)

9 Beacon Heights — East Salt Lake City, Salt Lake City School District

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 92.13 percent

Total Pop:486
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 23.66 percent

White: 353, Black: 13, Hispanic: 31, Asian/pacific islander: 88, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 1

8 North Star Academy — Bluffdale, Charter School
north-staracademy.com

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 92.16 percent

Total Pop: 508
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 11.81 percent

White: 484, Black: 9, Hispanic: 9, Asian/pacific islander: 4, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 2

7 Westridge — Provo, Provo School District

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 92.48 percent

Total Pop: 870
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 37.33 percent

White: 668, Black: 8, Hispanic: 123, Asian/pacific islander: 57, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 11

“Our philosophy is ‘failure is not an option,’” said Gaye Gibbs, principal of Westridge Elementary.

Despite the school’s high poverty rate, Westridge manages academic excellence by homing in on students’ specific needs, the principal said. Faculty and staff use a three-tier education model, which moves students to higher tiers if they need more specific attention.

“You have to find out where kids are at, intervene and give them exactly what they need,” Gibbs said.

6 Dilworth — Salt Lake City, Salt Lake City School District

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 92.88 percent

Total Pop: 567
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 19.56 percent

White: 510, Black: 8 Hispanic: 29, Asian/pacific islander: 13, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 3

“Parents in our school do a lot to make sure our students are being responsible in doing homework,” said Kenneth Limb, principal of Dilworth Elementary.

5 Mt. Loafer School — Salem, Nebo School District

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 92.99 percent

Total Pop: 443
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 22.36 percent

White: 419, Black: 2, Hispanic: 13, Asian/pacific islander: 5, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 3

Mt. Loafer school is one of three schools in the Nebo School District using a new system of instructional framework said Lana Hiskey, spokeswoman for the district. The teachers receive training on the new structure and how to implement it into their lesson plans. All three schools have seen a rise in test scores, she said.

4 Bonneville — Salt Lake City, Salt Lake City School District

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 93.13 percent

Total Pop: 467
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 9.4 percent

White: 217, Black: 5, Hispanic: 211, Asian/pacific islander: 2, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 15

Bonneville School has traditionally done well on the state test scores, says Principal Donna Reid, because of parental support and parent volunteers, highly qualified teachers and administrators, an implementation of the arts, and a focus on introducing proven teaching strategies. This year the staff at the school is even reading and discussing a book called “Teach Like a Champion.”

3 Canyon Crest — Provo, Provo School District

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 93.39 percent

Total Pop: 487
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 20.16 percent

White: 434, Black: 5, Hispanic: 31, Asian/pacific islander: 15, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 2

Canyon Crest has focused on raising their scores over the last few years, said Adele Youd, testing coordinator at the school. She said two years ago, the school started bringing in five tutors that work at the school most of the day. They spend about 30 minutes with each classroom each day on math and language arts skills.

Canyon Crest also tests their students each week on concepts they should be learning in language arts and math and then devotes the last 30 minutes of the day, four days a week, to either help those kids who have not mastered the concepts catch up or to provide an enrichment activity for the students who understand the material.

2 Mountainside Elementary — Mendon, Cache County School District
ccsdut.org

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 93.47 percent

Total Pop: 529
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 25.67 percent

White: 492, Black: 0, Hispanic: 23, Asian/pacific islander: 3, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 4

1 Summit School — Smithfield, Cache County School District

Average percent of students proficient on math and language arts state test scores in 2010: 94.31 percent

Total Pop: 427
Percent of students on free and reduced lunch: 42.35 percent

White: 327, Black: 0 Hispanic: 42, Asian/pacific islander: 9, Amer Ind/Alaskan: 0

Jack Robinson, principal at Summit School, attributes much of the students success to having all the teachers in each grade level meet almost weekly to discuss new proven teaching strategies and individual student’s needs. All the teachers in the same grade level also meet as a district once a month.

Summit has also scheduled math and language arts at the same time for all classes in the same grade so teachers can have the option of moving students back and forth between classes so certain skill-levels can work together and have more focused time on individual needs.