Superintendent Wakeham Addresses Low Michigan Merit Exam Results
Trenton Patch sat down with new Superintendent Rod Wakeham to see what he has planned for Trenton Public Schools.
Trenton Patch sat down with new Superintendent Rod Wakeham of Trenton Public Schools to find out his ideas for the coming school year and his thoughts on the recent decline in scores on the Michigan Merit Exam (MME).
What can parents, students and members of the Trenton community expect from you in the 2012-13 school year?
"They can expect that I'm going to be visible in the district.
"My main goal is to take a closer look at what each level is doing."
What are your thoughts on the recent results of the Michigan Merit Exam for Trenton High School students?
"I'm not pleased. We all look at student achievement, as our goal in education, and indicators such as the MME and ACT, even for one year, so that if our performance isn't what our expectations are, then yes, we are going to take a look at it as a district."
Historically, Trenton High School has exceeded the state average in every category (of the MME), what do you think it is about math and science that suddenly became more of an issue?
"At this point I don't have an answer for that.
"The hard part with the MME is we don't get the information back about what our students scored well on ... we know we didn't score as well as we did in previous years. From there it's developing strategies that, we think, will help the overall picture as opposed to being able to pinpoint specific content areas."
What do you think you'll do differently from previous superintendents like John Savel and Larry Leapley?
"I don't look at it as doing something differently from Dr. Leapley or Dr. Savel.
"I can be who I am. My idea is to get involved with the leadership, find out what we need to progress and try and find out the methods to provide those needs."
Are you confident that at the next board meeting (Aug. 27, 2012) there will be a presentation with specific actions planned to make sure Trenton students are proficient in all categories this coming year?
"I feel that the high school, even during the summer, they weren't happy with their scores, so they were doing activities during the summertime, so that we are prepared in September to start the improvement process."
Anything you want to say to parents, students or staff?
"I look forward to the upcoming school year.
"I do feel that we have quality people working here. We have a community that offers ground support. And we provide an environment were students can get a quality education."