Stakeholders see focus on equity in Strategic Plan review

Eden Prairie Schools continues to make progress to achieve the results outlined in its Strategic Plan. Last week, the Core Planning team, a group of nearly 30 students, parents/guardians and community members, completed a 12-hour review of the district’s progress. The Eden Prairie community helped define the Strategic Plan in 2012, and revised it in 2018. The Core Planning Team reviews the district’s progress on three strategies: personalized learning, achievement disparities and engagement.

In each of the strategies, there was progress that demonstrated the district’s commitment to ensure all students are achieving at high levels.

Most notable was the district’s graduation rate, which was 95 percent for all students.

  • For Black/African-American students, graduation rates increased by 22 percentage points over four years to 87 percent in 2020.
  • The rate for Hispanic/Latino students increased 26 percentage points over four years to 85 percent.
  • For students eligible for free- or reduced-price lunch, the graduation rate was 85 percent, an increase of 22 percentage points over four years.

Another key data point was the progress of Eden Prairie Schools’ 3rd grade students in reading. In the district’s mid-year assessment, the growth in reading scores between for students who are not English learners showed no achievement gap among white, Black/African-American and Hispanic/Latino students. This news is all the more notable because it happened during this year, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We have exceptional results that show our schools and classrooms are achieving the outcomes designed by the strategic plan,” said Dr. Josh Swanson, Superintendent. “The Core Planning Team acknowledged those accomplishments, and they also pointed to areas for additional focus. This team represents Eden Prairie and it has shaped and refined our strategic plan. Their feedback keeps us on course.”

Additional evidence of progress shared with the Core Planning Team was:

  • A 98 percent increase in Hispanic student enrollment in high school Advanced Placement courses and a 78 percent increase in Black/African-American student enrollments. School staff made personal and direct invitations for students to enroll.
  • Personalized learning during the pandemic by providing full, online Spanish immersion education to Eagle Heights Spanish Immersion students.
  • Demonstration of “wrap-around” interventions for students using a three-tier system: Additional learning and social-emotional supports are provided based on unique student needs.
  • Recruiting staff and teachers of color to work in Eden Prairie Schools by developing a relationship with the University of Minnesota.
  • 95 percent of students in grades 3 through 12 set personal academic and social-emotional goals, which is part of the district’s program for personalizing learning.
  • ACT exam results remain well above the state average at 24.6, although the exam was not administered in 2020.

For more information, view the district’s strategic plan.