NAPPANEE — Last year, Wa-Nee Community Schools set a goal that every school would be an “A” school. This year, they celebrate achieving that goal.
Teachers, administrators and staff members from Wa-Nee Community Schools gathered at the NorthWood High School gymnasium on Wednesday to celebrate all five of the Wa-Nee schools receiving A grades from the Indiana Department of Education. Penn-Harris-Madison schools was the only other local school corporation to have all its schools receive A grades.
Wearing bright red shirts that said, “Wa-Nee Community Schools, All Schools A Schools,” the staff members heard speeches from board members, Nappanee mayor Larry Thompson and other people affiliated with the school district.
Jim Bennett, director of curriculum and instruction, said that last year the schools received 2 A’s, 1 B and 2 C’s. He credits their improvement to the hard work of the staff, the students and support from the community.
The goal, to get all A grades for the schools and the district, is a “pretty lofty” one, according to Bennett. They found out preliminary grades about a month ago and official grades were released last week.
While Bennett said he was not sure what the grades would be, they were hopeful that they would better than last year’s. He said it will be tricky to maintain that grade now that they have achieved top marks.
NorthWood Middle School vocal music teacher Tonya Angle said that while she appreciates being honored for what she and her fellow teachers do, she also said that she can’t take all the credit.
“We can’t count that out,” she said referring to the community and parental support. “We can’t say it’s just because of the teachers.”
Thompson, a 1971 graduate of NorthWood High School, said three generations of his family have attended the school district. He praised the staff, administrators and parents for their parts in the school’s achievement.
“It is a total community effort,” he said.
Superintendent Joe Sabo also praised the local community for supporting the schools and the teachers for taking on leadership roles within the schools. He said banners will be made to commemorate the all A’s.
“You are our best advertisement,” he said.