Powhatan Elementary rated ‘excellent’


Times Leader Staff Writer

POWHATAN – The Powhatan Elementary School has been rated excellent by the Ohio Department of Education.

Meeting this goal has been an ongoing process for Powhatan’s teachers and staff.

“We’ve worked very hard,” said Powhatan Elementary Principal Curtis Wisvari. “The result has been our students taking interest.”

The teachers have achieved the excellent goal by focusing on diagnostic teaching. Teachers are using research – based data – and applying it to their lesson plans.

As the teachers apply this new change in the classroom, the students are introduced to the idea of being held accountable, and through this the students are taught to set goals for themselves.

One teacher has used visual learning tools to show her students where they stand as far as reading levels and so forth. The students even set goals for themselves and chart where they want to be and where they are.

“We are very proud of our students and staff,” said Wisvari. “Teachers have never been asked to do more.”

The staff at Powhatan Elementary has found another key to receiving an excellent rating is cooperation among the staff. They have begun collaborating with each other and talking the same talk.

Teachers have reached out to the students, giving each student one-on-one attention, working on areas that the student struggles with or even having the student spend 45 minutes a day in work stations that focuses on areas such as math or spelling.

The teachers are also reaching out to parents as well, providing more positive feedback and teaching the parents the same talk that the teachers are using in the classroom.

“This is our reward for being engaged in positive education and not dwelling (on the negative) and reach our goal of being more efficient,” said Wisvari.

Powhatan Elementary students and staff will be moving into their new building after the first of the year. The corner stone dedication ceremony for the school will be held on Dec. 29, at 1 p.m. on the new campus.

Van Dyne can be reached at kvandyne@timesleaderonline.com