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School

December 4, 2012
 

Message for December from Cypress School Superintendent Beverly Hempstead

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Cypress School District, Beverly Hempstead

The following information was released by Cypress School District.

A Share Vision: Children First!

District mission

The mission of the Cypress School District is to provide a school/community environment that promotes the development of each child’s maximum potential by providing a quality staff, low class size based on financial conditions, well maintained and safe campuses, opportunities for parent involvement, and a focus on high scholastic standards and positive self-esteem in children. The Board of Trustees of the Cypress School District believes they have an obligation to the approximately 3,899 students in the District, to provide the highest quality education possible aligned with this mission. Students are our greatest priority, and it is our shared goal that all children reach their maximum potential.

District five strategic goal areas

This month, the Board of Trustees reviewed the Superintendent’s District Five Strategic Goal Areas. These goals will be brought back to the Board in December for approval. They include:

Communication. It is the goal of the District to provide open, transparent communication with students, parents, employees, and our extended community. To that end, we will provide continuous information that is clear and thorough, in order to encourage an understanding of the District’s educational programs and the status of Measure M/modernization and asset management plans.

Student Achievement. Students in the Cypress School District are achieving at high levels. Under the State Accountability Progress Reporting System, test scores recently released by the California Department of Education for the 2011/12 school year indicate that Cypress students are surpassing county and state scores. Cypress School District students outperformed the state and county Statewide Performance Targets for schools in both English and mathematics. The state growth in the Academic Performance Index (API) is 788 points. The Orange County score is 835, and the 2012 API score for the Cypress School District is 893. This is a score of 893 out of a possible 1000 points, with the state goal being that every school should score at 800 or above API. Scores have been raised 15 points over last year!

Cypress students also made strides in their Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) scores. This year, Cypress students increased their percentages over last year in both English and mathematics for all ethnic groups, English learners, students with disabilities, and socioeconomically disadvantaged. Scores ranged between 52 percent and 91 percent in English/language arts and between 53 percent and 93 percent in mathematics. Cypress School District is one of only two Orange County school districts that met all AYP targets!

Additionally, fifth grade students were tested on the CST in the area of science, with 80 percent scoring at proficient and advanced, a three percent increase over last year. Fourth grade students were tested on the CST in the area of writing, with 91 percent achieving a passing score, a 20 percent increase over last year.

Technology. The District will continue to promote the effective use of technology to increase learning and productivity for students and employees, while improving both infrastructure and programs in support of this goal.

Budget. While the state continues to be in a budget crisis that affects all school districts, we are more hopeful following the passage of Proposition 30. This legislation will provide billions of dollars in desperately needed revenues to schools, which can be used to repay nearly $10 billion in K-14 apportionment deferrals and fulfill the Proposition 98 guarantee to fund education. As we move forward post-election, it will continue to be the goal of the Cypress School District to maintain solvency and high quality support for educational programs.

Modernization/Asset Management. We will continue to successfully implement the District’s modernization plan and Master Plan for Asset Management. Efforts are currently underway to modernize Luther School, with Vessels, King, and Morris modernization already completed. To accomplish this task, the District is utilizing its special reserve for capital outlay projects, while we review best options to secure more Measure M funding authorization. Due to California’s poor economic situation and depressed home valuations, the District is limited in utilizing remaining authorization amounts. To overcome this challenge, the District is exploring a possible bridge loan program that could secure enough funding to continue its currently established modernization schedule. This plan would issue a third series of bonds and make use of privately placed revenue bonds, to advance a portion of the District’s future State Grant matching funds and the remaining Measure M Bond authorization, with a planned bridge payoff in 2019.

For more information regarding the asset management plan, goals, and the State of the District, please visit www.cypsd.k12.ca.us.

Cypress School District’s Board of Trustees and staff thank the parents and community for their continued support in maintaining the focus of a “Shared Vision: Children First.”

Featured photo

File photo by C.E.H. Wiedel of Cypress School District Superintendent Beverly Hempstead.

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