Yorkville School District Y115 gets high marks on state report card, seeks to close ‘equity gaps’

Yorkville Circle Center Grade School students, parents and teachers fill the school gymnasium for the Hispanic Heritage Month assembly on Oct. 14, 2022.

YORKVILLE – With a four-year graduation rate of 96%, nearly nine percentage points above the state average, Yorkville School District Y115 students are showing continued achievement, even as the district works to close “equity gaps” in student performance.

The 2022 Illinois Report Card, prepared annually by the Illinois State Board of Education, was released Oct. 27. The report card provides a detailed look at each school’s progress on academics, student success, finances and school culture and climate.

One district school, Grande Reserve Elementary School, received the “exemplary” designation, placing it in the state’s top 10%. All other schools in the district, including the high school and the middle school, were rated as “commendable.”

Overall, Yorkville’s students demonstrated proficiency in English language arts, mathematics and science across grade levels, exceeding the state average during the 2021-22 school year, according to a news release from the district.

“Our teachers and staff are incredibly hardworking, and we are proud of the continued efforts put forth to ensure our students have the desired support needed to grow their education,” D-115 Superintendent Tim Shimp said.

The 2022 Illinois Report Card includes a new section this year called the Equity Journey Continuum.

While Y115 was highly rated in the “elevating educators” category, reflecting the district’s commitment to effective teaching, the “learning conditions” rating indicated there is room to improve in closing gaps in meaningful parent-family-student engagement, according to the release.

The report card analysis notes: “The district is working in partnership with stakeholders to craft a multilingual strategic plan, adding a family and community engagement coordinator, incorporating an equity lens into district committee work, and viewing disaggregated student data to better identify and address achievement gaps across student groups.”

At the Oct. 25 Yorkville School Board meeting, the district approved hiring a family and community engagement coordinator.

The report cards shows that English Language Arts (ELA) proficiency as measured by the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is above the state average.

Since 2019, there have been significant decreases in achievement gaps among demographic groups as measured by the SAT and Illinois Assessment of Readiness (IAR) tests, according to the release.

Students with an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) and African American students showed positive proficiency gains in both math and evidence-based reading and writing.

Yorkville student proficiency on the Illinois Science Assessment (ISA) is above the state average and continues to show year-over-year improvement, according to the district.

In addition to a high graduation rate, postsecondary enrollment of District 115 students continues to surpass the state average, while a measure of the high school freshman class indicates students are on their way to getting back to pre-pandemic levels, according to school officials.

The district also has focused on preparing graduates for workforce readiness, district officials said. There has been a four-year decline for students needing to complete required remedial coursework prior to entering community colleges, down to 20% from 50%.

The Yorkville High School Class of 2022 had three of four graduates, 75%, take at least one AP or dual credit offerings during their four-year experience, district officials said. The 2022 class had 34% more students access early college coursework than the Class of 2019.

District 115 continues to demonstrate fiscal responsibility regarding the overall budget, according to the report card, receiving the second-highest designation of financial recognition from the Financial Profile Score with a score of 3.8 out of 4.

The district has maintained a balanced budget for more than 10 years and continues to operate with healthy fund balances, according to the report card.

To view District 115′s complete Illinois Report Card data, visit www.illinoisreportcard.com.