Annual Report

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Lincoln Public Schools

The Power of Public Education,
Inspiring Excellence

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Honored with prestigious 2015 Award for Urban School Board Excellence, bestowed on only three “exemplary” school districts in the nation.

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Recognized as a District of Distinction, respected national recognition from the District Administration magazine.

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BELOW: The four strategic goals of Lincoln Public Schools

Lincoln Public Schools:The Power of Public Education, Inspiring Excellence

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Strategic Goal No. 1:

Learning: Increase on-time graduation rate to 90 percent by 2019.

LPS Superintendent Steve Joel: “Our school district believes it is essential for LPS students to leave high school with a meaningful diploma that serves as a gateway to better employment and a successful college career.”

  • Nebraska State Accountability (NeSA): Solid, significant improvement – scores above state averages in most grades and subjects. Noteworthy: 86 percent of third graders read at or above grade level, up from 76 percent five years ago; math holds strong with scores meeting or exceeding the state average in every grade but 11; science scores continue to climb.
  • ACT: Entire class of 2015 took ACT as juniors for free (compared to 65 percent previously), thanks to a pilot program. Jane Stavem, associate superintendent for Instruction at LPS: “When comparing our school district - where 100 percent of students are tested - with states that have 100 percent participation rates for the ACT, LPS ties with the very highest performers.”
  • AQuESTT: LPS classified as a “3 – great” school district in a new Nebraska Department of Education accountability system called AQuESTT (Accountability for a Quality Education System Today and Tomorrow (four levels, 4 as the highest).
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LPS graduation rate increased from 80.1 percent in 2010 to 85.2 percent in 2015.

Strategic Goal No. 2:

Facilities: Provide safe, comfortable and secure learning environment for students and staff.

  • Students in 38 elementary schools, 11 middle schools, six high schools, three high school focus programs and The Career Academy.
  • Community approved a $153 million bond issue for school district in February 2014 with overwhelming approval.

Bond issue projects well underway:

The Career Academy opened fall of 2015 • Renovated Seacrest Field opened fall 2015 • New secure entrance projects in schools completed • Technology improvements underway across the school district • Renovations and additions at many existing facilities • Sally G. Wysong Elementary School to open fall 2016 • Bill Nuernberger Education Center to open fall 2016 • Marilyn Moore Middle School to open fall 2017.

Click here for an update on progress about bond issue projects

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Historic highs in student enrollment. Enrollment has risen by 30% in last 20 years and 58% in last 30 years. Our district continues to grow every year.

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Strategic Goal No. 3:

Communications and Public Engagement: Engage the public and key stakeholders.

Perception Data: More than 1,600 families from 27 LPS schools were surveyed about their perceptions of various aspects of the school district. Highlights of findings:

  • 89 percent gave their child’s school a grade of A or B, compared to 72 percent nation-wide.
  • 80 percent gave the school district a grade of A or B, compared to 51 percent nation-wide.
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Strategic Goal No. 4:

Resources: Make effective and efficient use of the community’s time, treasure and talents.

  • 53 percent of the current LPS teaching staff have a master’s degree.
  • Currently LPS has 16 Nationally Board Certified Teachers.

New teachers hired for 2015-16:

  • From 19 different states including Nebraska.
  • Have teacher preparation degrees from 58 colleges and universities outside of Nebraska - plus 16 colleges and universities in Nebraska.
  • New teachers of diversity hired: 18.
  • New teachers hired with master’s degrees or higher education: 109.
  • New teachers hired who have previous experience: 143.
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Parents get involved! We encourage families to take advantage of opportunities available, including:

Students in grades 3-12 will receive individual Chromebooks in a three-year Instructional Technology program that began in 2015

Budget and Stewardship:

2014-15 budget: $363.6 million, 5.20 percent increase – included flat tax levy and addressed:

Significant growth and complexity of LPS students along with a changing landscape of delivering quality education.

  • 2015-16 budget: $379.8 million, 4.5 percent increase.
  • Budget focuses more than 82.5 percent of expenditures on instruction. Funded through local, county, state and federal funds - two largest funding sources are property taxes and state aid.
  • One of the lowest per-pupil-spending school districts in the state — more than $1,000 per student below state average.
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