By Lee Johnson
Woodruff Elementary has a new goal to provide help to students who move in and out of the elementary’s boundaries — giving each one the specialized attention and care they need to make the most of their time at the Logan school and providing them the tools to be self-sufficient learners when they move on.
“Our demographic is around 70 percent low socioeconomic status and about 16-17 percent high mobility, which means that a student could be started at our school and move like four times throughout the year,” said Principal Spencer Holmgren, who provided his plan for high mobility students among other goals to the Logan City School District on Nov. 10.
Holmgren said this can be a huge challenge to education.
“While we’ve got them here, we’ve got to take advantage of that time,” Holmgren said. “The school has to jump on it quick and they have to have something that they can really help that student with during that time, because they’re probably not going to stay.”
Teachers try to help incoming children get in pace with where the class is in its curriculum.
“For incoming students, I seat them next to the kids whom I know will help them with the day-to-day rules and procedures of our classroom,” said Sally Bair, a fourth-grade teacher at Woodruff. “Students are often disoriented and behind when they have moved from one district, state or school to another. This helps them meet new friends and find someone they are willing to ask questions to as well.”
Students aren’t the only ones who are impacted by high mobility. So are teachers, who are increasingly being held accountable for their class’ test scores.
“Last year, I got a kid the day before we started state testing and that student was required to test along with the rest of my class even though I had not taught them anything,” Bair said.
Holmgren said he wants to make sure that these students are given the chance to do well.
“We want to help these kids to not only be able to succeed while they are here, but we want them to become self-motivated learners,” Holmgren said.