Schools’ report card progress nets award

Tribune Chronicle / R. Michael Semple Girard Intermediate School Principal Gregory Bonamase accompanies students as they get onto their bus at the end of the school day Friday. The school was one of three Trumbull County schools to receive the Momentum Award from the Ohio Department of Education.

Three schools in Trumbull County have been given the prestigious Momentum Award by the state for showing improvement on the annual state report cards.

Awards were presented to Chalker High School in Southington, Girard Intermediate School and Summit Academy in Warren, because, according to the Ohio Department of Education, they exceeded expectations in student growth for the year.

In Mahoning County, among the schools recognized were Austintown and West Branch middle schools and Youngstown Early College.

Schools must earn straight A’s on all value-added measures on the report card to be eligible for the award. The value-added subgroups are gifted students, those in the lowest 20 percent of achievement and students with disabilities.

The local schools are among 169 in Ohio recognized by ODE this year.

“It really shows how hard my staff and students have worked to get there. … The goal is to take that kid from wherever they’ve come from and let’s show a year’s worth of growth. To have exceeded that, we are so proud of that,” said Girard Intermediate Principal Gregory Bonamase.

The intermediate school in Girard and Austintown Middle School received straight A’s in the value-added subgroups. Chalker High School and Summit Academy were not rated in the gifted category but received A’s in the lowest 20 percent of achievement and students with disabilities categories. Each received a grade of A in the progress category.

David Cappuzzello, superintendent of Girard City Schools, said “we are thrilled with the improvements that happened. We didn’t know what to expect from this year’s tests. It showed we didn’t do too badly across the board. But we still have room for improvement, don’t get me wrong.”

Robert Kujala, principal at Chalker High School, said strategies for student improvement put into place last year paid off this year, but there’s work ahead to continue the “great results.”

One of things being done this year is an added intervention period for students who need extra help, Kujala said.

“We will try to continue to move students forward a year or more, and we’ll continue looking for ways to do more,” he said.

Vincent Colaluca, Austintown superintendent, said the award is a cooperative effort among administrators, teachers, parents and students. He said the value-added grade is an important measure.

“That is a measurable goal for a student on whether he is showing growth,” Colaluca said. “Our grade shows an exemplary performance by our students who displayed lots of hard work.”


Winning schools

Schools in Trumbull County that received the Momentum Award in 2016:

• Chalker High School, Southington Local Schools

• Girard Intermediate School

• Summit Academy Community School, Warren

Schools in Mahoning County that received the award:

• Austintown Middle School

• South Range Elementary School

• Stambaugh Charter Academy

• West Branch Middle School

• Youngstown Early College