• Category 2

    Selected in 2018

  • Grades: pre k - 5
    School Setting: rural
    Town Population: 367
    Student Enrollment: 262
    Student Demographics:

    Black/African American: 0%
    White/Caucasian: 90%
    Hispanic: 9%
    Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 0%
    Asian: 0%
    Native American: 0.7%
    Other: 0.3%

    Teacher/Student Ratio: 1:18
    % Reduced Lunch: 80%
    % ELL Learners: 9%
    Founded: 1936
  • PRINCIPAL:
    Jessica McPherson
  • CONTACT:
    320 Main St
    Gamaliel, KY 42140
    270-457-2341
    jessica.mcpherson@monroe.kyschools.us
Gamaliel Elementary School
Gamaliel, KY
“It's just different at Gamaliel, we are all truly a family."
Explain how ESEA federal funds are used to support your improvement efforts.
At Gamaliel Elementary, ESEA federal funds are used to fund additional certified staff members to ensure that our class sizes remain small. Small class sizes enable teachers to form stronger relationships with their students and allow more opportunities for individualized instruction. In addition to funding additional staff members, we also utilize our ESEA funds for parent involvement
Describe the most successful activity your school has initiated to strengthen ties to your community.
We have a very strong relationship with our community. One activity that we began implementing three years ago is our Amazing Race. The Amazing Race is a test-prep activity that heavily involves our community members. During the race, students follow clues to visit local businesses and historic sites. The whole activity is funded by community donations. One of the local churches hosts a beginning of the year breakfast for the staff and another church hosts our end of the year 5th-grade breakfast each year. We also host a community trunk-or-treat, where local businesses set up in our parking lot to hand out goodies to kids. Last year, for our Christmas activity, each grade level assembled blessing boxes and left them out in the front lawn for the needy families of our community.
Describe your school culture and explain changes you’ve taken to improve it.
Our school culture is one thing we are well known for. People often comment that "it's just different at Gamaliel" and that we are all truly a family. Part of the reason for this is that we live in a small town. But, we also have taken time over the years to cultivate our close-knit culture by organizing outings outside of school time; having a group text where we talk about everything, not just school; participating in activities where we do things like Random Acts of Kindness or "Getting to Know You" type games; attending important events in each others' lives; etc. We truly are friends and family, not just co-workers.
Describe how data is used to improve student achievement and inform decision making.
The teachers at Gamaliel Elementary School are very data-oriented. We are constantly formatively assessing our students, and then analyzing data to see where we can improve our teaching practices and which students need to be RTIed. This is something we are so comfortable doing, that it's just ingrained in our everyday habits. Teachers RTI with students multiple times a day to make sure every student is getting the instruction they need to make sure they are successful.
Describe the program or initiative that has had the greatest positive effect on student achievement, including closing achievement or opportunity gaps, if applicable.
Several years ago, we really struggled with our reading achievement scores. We implemented many different programs and strategies to improve in reading. We began doing small literacy groups K-5 daily to help them learn the reading strategies they needed. We have since been able to change literacy groups to just K-3 since closing the reading gap with our older students. We have also begun using the Reading Plus program, which is a fully self-guided, fully individualized, online reading program. This has increased our students' reading levels and comprehension tremendously. We also have implemented targeted RTIs in every subject area, with teachers working one-on-one with students multiple times a day. Anything you do where you are individualizing your instruction to meet the needs of each student is going to have a positive effect on achievement.
Stats
  • Category 2

    Selected in 2018

  • Grades: pre k - 5
    School Setting: rural
    Town Population: 367
    Student Enrollment: 262
    Student Demographics:

    Black/African American: 0%
    White/Caucasian: 90%
    Hispanic: 9%
    Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 0%
    Asian: 0%
    Native American: 0.7%
    Other: 0.3%

    Teacher/Student Ratio: 1:18
    % Reduced Lunch: 80%
    % ELL Learners: 9%
    Founded: 1936
  • PRINCIPAL:
    Jessica McPherson
  • CONTACT:
    320 Main St
    Gamaliel, KY 42140
    270-457-2341
    jessica.mcpherson@monroe.kyschools.us