Welcome to the Eastland CUSD 308 website. Our district continues to embrace the shifts in public education: the new priorities on student outcomes, accountability, student engagement, common and rigorous expectations, and dynamic instructional technologies. At the same time, our district itself has gone through a period of change: adjusting for reduced enrollments, adding services for students and families in need, remodeling outdated facilities, constructing new additions, closing buildings that are no longer needed, reducing costs to match diminishing revenues, making security enhancements, replacing retiring teachers, and improving the quality of our school lunches.
US News and World Report annually issues a report on the Best High Schools in the U.S. and Illinois, and Eastland Jr/Sr High School received Bronze level recognition in their rankings for 2016.
Rankings are determined in four steps. EJSHS ranked high in 3 of the 4 steps. Notably, on measures of academic proficiency, a significantly higher % of students demonstrated proficiency in math and reading than in schools statewide, and students identified as “disadvantaged” based on economic and demographic indicators performed as well or better. In fact, the % of disadvantaged students demonstrating math and reading proficiency was 33% higher at EJSHS than in schools statewide.
The report calculates preparedness for college-level coursework based on two factors: 1) the % of 12th graders who have participated in an Advanced Placement (AP) Course, and 2) the % of those participants who “passed” an AP course at the level necessary for college credit. The report showed that 32% of Eastland 12th graders have taken at least one (1) AP course, and that of these students, most have taken two (2) or more.
To build on and improve our 2016 ranking, EJSHS will need to sustain or improve proficiency and graduation rate levels and increase the % of students taking and passing Advanced Placement courses. EJSHS began implementing AP Calculus in 2012-13 and in recent years has expanded offerings to include AP Literature and AP Chemistry. In 2016-17, AP U.S. History and AP Biology will be added.
While the criteria used by US News and World Report are not sufficiently comprehensive to account for all of the important outcomes by which a successful high school should be evaluated, they are important and worthwhile. Eastland is seeking to improve in all areas, not only in math and reading, but in the other core disciplines, humanities, vocational programs, the arts, physical education, co- and extra-curricular programs. The US News and World Report sets a high and worthwhile standard to which we can aspire, but our Strategic Plan is a the more comprehensive lens through which we will evaluate our total program.