Source: Valley Roadrunner

VCPUSD students outpace peers in physical fitness test

by Michael Crane

December 18, 2013

Students in the Valley Center-Pauma Unified School District continued to perform strongly on physical fitness this past year in comparison with other districts across the state and county. 2013 also saw VCPSUD students improve over their scores from last year.

At the regular meeting of the School District Board on Dec. 13, Assistant Superintendent Mary Gorsuch shared the results of the physical fitness test, which assesses students in grades five, seven, and nine each year.

“Students participate in six different activities designed to measure their achievement against six fitness standards,” said Gorsuch. “To be considered in the healthy fitness zone, students must successfully complete all of the six tests, which include aerobic capacity, body composition, abdominal strength, trunk extension strength, and flexibility.

“Valley Center-Pauma students continue to significantly out-perform their peers at the county and state level.”

Compared with their county peers, VCPSUD fifth graders performed 15.3 percent higher, seventh graders performed 10.8 percent higher, and ninth graders performed 6.9 percent higher. All three of the grade levels tested better compared with last year, with improvements of 1.8 percent, 3 percent, and 2 percent for grades five, seven, and nine, respectively.

“In a nutshell, up, up, up in every category,” said Gorsuch.

VCPUSD students performed especially well on trunk extension strength, flexibility, and abdominal strength, while body composition was the weakest area, though still above state and county averages.

With 43.2 percent of fifth graders in the “Healthy Fitness Zone,” 47.8 percent of seventh graders, and 50.2 percent of ninth graders, students in 2013 posted some of the highest scores in the district in the last eight years.

Also at the meeting, Superintendent Lou Obermeyer shared updates on the district’s action plan. VCPUSD priorities for the coming year include increasing student achievement through the new Common Core State Standards, implementing a technology-rich learning environment, preparing students for colleges and careers, and ensuring that the district remains conscious of its resources and fiscal integrity.

“We have made a lot of progress as we always do,” said Obermeyer. “We have stayed the course and we continue to go deep into a lot of good things for our students.”

Obermeyer also spoke proudly of the fiscal reserves of the district, which have remained over 20 percent for the past four years, and should remain that way for the coming two years at least.

VCPUSD will also be implementing the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), California’s new school funding formula which was approved by Governor Jerry Brown and state legislators last June. In tandem with the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) to monitor the use of those funds, LCFF will provide a new system for the financing of school districts across the state.

LCFF and LCAP will be taken up again at board meetings in the coming months, but there is an informational video and survey at www.vcpusd.org that Obermeyer encourages all parents to take.

In other news, Evette Striblen was recognized as the certificated employee of the month. Striblen teaches seventh and eighth grade Language Arts at the Valley Center Middle School, as well as the AVID elective.

The board also elected their officers for the coming year, who incidentally are exactly the same as the previous year. Don Martin will be president, Lori A. Johnson will be vice president, Karen J. Burstein will be clerk, and Lou Obermeyer will be secretary.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for Jan. 16 at 6 p.m.