According to the Florida Standards Assessment test for 2016, there are 11 elementary schools in Escambia County that were graded a D or F.
These schools predominantly serve children who come from low-income neighborhoods, which means they and their families face the challenges that poverty can put in the way of their academic progress.
We spent time with the principals and staffs of each of these schools to find out what their challenges are, what they love about their schools and what strategies they will use to help improve their students academic achievement.
With a focus on families, early learning the community of teachers at C.A. Weis Elementary School are working to improve student performance from even the earliest ages.
The principal at Reinhardt Holm Elementary School believes that the key to success is changing the mindset of both students and teachers.
Second year principal says building a strong culture, targeted reading interventions, focusing on growth are watch words for this school year.
Targeted interventions in reading, focused parent outreach — including home visits — and training for teachers are part of Principal Larry Knight's plan for improvement at Sherwood Elementary School.
Global Learning Academy strives to overcome the challenges of poverty on the journey to raise student proficiency and academic success.
Staff works to harness each others strengths to make staff development, joint planning, parent involvement all work together to benefit the students.
Boosting basic reading and math skills will be at the heart of the plan to improve Ensley's showing on state standardized tests.
Getting new students to meet academic standards, adjusting to new tests and developing new teachers are a few of the challenges Oakcrest Elementary School faces to pass muster on statewide assessments.
Helping students get the resources they need to overcome the socio-economic challenges they face is the key to increasing test scores and improving academic achievement at West Pensacola Elementary School.
First-year Principal Hollie Wilkins believes that her students and staff can again rise to top as a high-performing A school in Escambia County.
At schools such as Ensley Elementary, staff look from all kinds of ways to boost parent engagement and student attendance — as some districts did last year with donated laundry machines.
Mapping the elementary schools that were graded lowest on the Florida Standards Assessment reinforces the tie between poverty, education.
In one year, Escambia County's kindergartners make remarkable progress thanks to their teachers. To get more of them where they need to be, the community needs to pitch in.
Finding a way for Escambia schools to help close the "achievement gap" for our students will pay off in better education outcomes, economic opportunities and quality of life.