• Category 1

    Selected in 2013

  • Grades: pre k - 3
    School Setting: rural
    Town Population: 6,500
    Student Enrollment: 574
    Student Demographics:

    Black/African American: 1%
    White/Caucasian: 93.9%
    Hispanic: 1.7%
    Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 0%
    Asian: 0.7%
    Native American: 0%
    Other: 2.7%

    Teacher/Student Ratio: 1:24
    % Reduced Lunch: 44%
    % ELL Learners: 0%
    Founded: 1924
  • PRINCIPAL:
    Janeen Spradlin
  • CONTACT:
    800 Pirate Drive
    Wheelersburg , OH 45694
    740-574-8130
    janeen.spradlin@wheelersburg.net
Wheelersburg Elementary
Wheelersburg , OH
“To help students to have the best opportunity to succeed, our school began pre-K and pre-1st classes. These programs are for students who need an extra year for social or academic reasons. Children of these programs have traditionally emerged as strong achievers who become leaders in the school system."
Describe the most successful activity your school has initiated to strengthen ties to your community.
Wheelersburg Elementary has strong ties with our Appalachian community, especially in the area of literacy. Through the Project: Mentoring Ohio for Reading Excellence (MORE) program, community members volunteer to work with our “at risk” students. As a result of partnerships developed through MORE, local business leaders provide release time to employees to participate in our mentoring and tutoring program. Our mentoring program involves college students, our high school students, parents, grandparents, retired teachers, as well as members of RSVP, which is a program of the Ohio Department of Aging. Our MORE program has received two Walmart Community Service grants recognizing it for addressing literacy needs involving people from ages 8 to 85.We also received a grant from Dollar General as part of their Youth Literacy Programs. Mentors work one on one with students completing lessons and activities written and monitored by a Title I teacher. Project MORE is funded through Title I.
Describe your school culture and explain changes you’ve taken to improve it.
Our school mission statement “We are here to read, learn, and communicate in a positive manner” exemplifies our commitment to positive interactions and a supportive learning environment. Our tradition of parent and community support is something that we continually work to maintain and improve. The staff works hard to promote open communication through a variety of means including conferences, school-wide programs and celebrations, websites, social media, group texting and weekly newsletters. Our active PTO provides volunteers for classrooms and sponsors community events such as the 5K Pirate Run and Little Pirate Fun Run. High school Serve and Learn students assist in elementary classrooms in small groups and one on one. Our Positive Pirate program encourages and recognizes students for positive behavior. We celebrate reading through incentives presented at our Reader Rallies held each 9 weeks. This caring, supportive environment from a variety of avenues defines our school culture.
Describe how data is used to improve student achievement and inform decision making.
Wheelersburg teachers continually look at our assessment data and curriculum to address gaps. Multiple points of data are recorded in each student’s electronic data portfolio. These measures include STAR Reading, Math, and Early Literacy, DIBELS, the Gates Mac-Ginites Reading Test, Brigance Screener for preschool, the Metropolitan Achievement Test and teacher made assessments. This information is used to address each student’s individual needs. The data is also used to make decisions regarding curriculum efficacy as well as to place students in their instruction groups. Students are often moved from one flexible instructional group to another after the data has been analyzed. Teachers adjust their curriculum to match the needs of each group throughout the year. All students in Kindergarten – 3rd grades have data folders and track their own data toward personal goals. These data folders are shared with parents during the twice-annual parent teacher conferences.
Describe the program or initiative that has had the greatest positive effect on student achievement, including closing achievement or opportunity gaps, if applicable.
The initiatives that have had the greatest positive impact on student achievement are our early intervention programs. To help students to have the best opportunity to succeed, our school began pre-K and pre-1st classes. These programs are for students who need an extra year for social or academic reasons. Children of these programs have traditionally emerged as strong achievers who become leaders in the school system. Another key component to our student achievement has been our performance grouping. These groups are flexible with student needs at the center of group placement. Teachers create these instructional groups to address specific academic skills. With the Title teachers working in collaboration with teachers, “at risk” students receive a double dose of small group instruction providing for higher engagement and learning. The students at greatest risk also benefit from 1:1 instruction through our MORE program headed by a Title teacher.
Explain how Title I funds are used to support your improvement efforts.
Title I funds are crucial to the success of our students. Our Title I program is rich in instruction with Title I teachers working in classrooms, running groups concurrently with the classroom teacher. These funds also support our very important MORE program for our first, second, and third grade “at risk” students. Title I funds are used for professional development such as sending teachers to state professional conferences. During the second half of each year, we use the remainder of our Title I funds to hire short-term, part-time intervention teachers to target deficient skills for our most “at risk” third grade students. These teachers add additional reading and math instruction outside the scheduled reading and math blocks.
Describe your philosophy of school change or improvement.
In order to foster 21st Century Learners, Wheelersburg's philosophy involves collaboration among staff, administrators, and community. We strive to maintain the integrity of our system while researching and investigating new theories in education. We believe that every child can learn and there is always room for improvement. Wheelersburg teachers have high expectations for both themselves and others. These teachers have a strong work ethic and work many hours outside the regular school day. Wheelersburg educators are always looking for ways to improve. Student achievement is determined on an individual basis as teachers look for innovative ways to engage each student in learning and academic success.
Identify the critical professional development activities you use to improve teaching and student learning.
Professional development opportunities are abundant at Wheelersburg. Our district has four professional development days throughout the school year plus two hour early dismissals to target specific professional development. These days are carefully planned by a team of administrators and teachers who use teacher survey results and team recommendations. Because of this careful planning, local professional development is targeted, appropriate, and results in improvement in all areas.
Teachers’ meetings are held on a biweekly basis with grade level team meetings held on the alternate weeks. At teachers’ meetings, the principal provides mini-professional development based on observed need or by request. Common planning time provides grade level teams opportunities to collaborate. Teaching teams receive a release day each nine weeks to analyze data with the principal. Subject area and special committees also meet to plan for school-wide initiatives and curriculum improvement.
Stats
  • Category 1

    Selected in 2013

  • Grades: pre k - 3
    School Setting: rural
    Town Population: 6,500
    Student Enrollment: 574
    Student Demographics:

    Black/African American: 1%
    White/Caucasian: 93.9%
    Hispanic: 1.7%
    Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 0%
    Asian: 0.7%
    Native American: 0%
    Other: 2.7%

    Teacher/Student Ratio: 1:24
    % Reduced Lunch: 44%
    % ELL Learners: 0%
    Founded: 1924
  • PRINCIPAL:
    Janeen Spradlin
  • CONTACT:
    800 Pirate Drive
    Wheelersburg , OH 45694
    740-574-8130
    janeen.spradlin@wheelersburg.net