District 163 Schools Win Spotlight Award

School District 163

School District 163. (Photo: Wendy Heise)

Park Forest, IL–(ENEWSPF)– The Illinois State Board of Education has named three Park Forest-Chicago Heights School District 163 schools 2009 Spotlight Schools.

The schools include Mohawk Intermediate Center, 21st Century Preparatory Center and Beacon Hill Primary Center. Mohawk has received the designation for five consecutive years since 2005 and 21st Century and Beacon Hill have received the designation for four consecutive years.

“We are proud that our schools are among those schools that are able to claim that they have received this designation multiple times,” said Superintendent Joyce Carmine. “Our staff and our students are focused on consistent academic achievement, and the Spotlight School designation recognizes that they have been successful.”

The Spotlight award recognizes high poverty schools where academic performance is closing the achievement gap. District 163’s schools are among 425 Spotlight Schools in the state. The Spotlight School designation has been in place since 2003.

The criteria for the 2009 Spotlight award are:

  • At least half the students are from low-income families in 2009.
  • At least 60 percent of students have met or exceeded standards in both reading and mathematics in 2009.
  • At least 50 percent of students met or exceeded standards in both reading and mathematics in the two previous years.
  • Schools must have made Adequate Yearly Progress in the two previous years as required by No Child Left Behind, which in 2009 meant:
    • at least 70 percent of the students met/exceeded standards  in both reading and mathematics;
    • 95 percent participation rate in state assessments for all students in each subgroup
    • attendance rate of at least 90 percent for elementary and middle schools and graduation rate of at least 78 percent for high schools.