Mandan News

Solen High School named for improvement grant

Rachael Southam and students discuss reading content during whole group instruction at Solen High School. Submitted photo


Solen High School is working toward three main goals this year after receiving a three-year School Improvement Grant through the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction Title I office and the U.S. Department of Education under the federal ” No Child Left Behind Act.”

The grant focuses on school improvement and will be funded one year at a time if the school meets certain criteria.

School priorities are to improve attendance by 5 percent, increase the graduation rate by 5 percent and improve math and reading proficiency by 5 percent

So far, Solen High School has lengthened the instructional day by 30 minutes and the school year by 10 days, purchased the Read 180 intervention program from Scholastic for students in grades 7-12, hired a reading intervention teacher, purchased iPads to improve projects-based learning opportunities for students, hired a full-time substitute teacher who tutors students individually or in small groups when not covering classes for absent staff and hired a grant coordinator.

A hired educational consultant, Peg Portscheller from Pathways to Results LLC, is assisting with implementing standards-based education and a new effective teacher-principal evaluation is being piloted this year.

The high school applied for the grant because, for a number of years, it has not met “Adequate Yearly Progress,” as measured by the percentage of students scoring proficient or advanced on the North Dakota State Assessment and the school has been targeted for school improvement under federal law.