New Lisbon Elementary School Principal Mark Toelle talks about the rise in enrollment in New Lisbon during the school board meeting Sept. 11 at the school district media center.

Kevin Damask, Star-Times

As the New Lisbon School District works to improve its educational efforts, administrators got a glimpse of what past students think about their experience at New Lisbon.

Junior High/High School Principal Gary Syftestad presented results of the Lifetrack Post-Graduate Data survey to the New Lisbon Board of Education during its meeting Sept. 11 at the district’s media center. The survey questioned 40 graduates from the 2014 and ’15 classes. The New Lisbon alums answered 14 questions and a wide-range of topics.

In 2014, 100 percent of respondents felt they were offered a quality education at New Lisbon. That number fell to 82 percent in 2015. Syftestad said the survey generally showed high school students were well-prepared for college and beyond when they left New Lisbon.

When asked if teachers generally hold a high standard and demand quality work, 93 percent of ’14 graduates said yes, while 75 percent from the ’15 class agreed. For math preparation, 22 percent of the ’15 class said it was below average. Some students also felt technology preparation was below average, and Syftestad said the high school is working on providing more technology opportunities.

“For math, we’ve switched to year-round algebra and geometry three years ago,” Syftestad said. “I think we’ve done a good job of providing opportunities for students by taking them to tour UW-Whitewater and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.”

District Administrator Dennis Birr said results of the survey haven’t been shared with teachers yet, but will be dispersed to staff this week.

Initial attendance rising

Administrators at New Lisbon also reported enrollment has increased for the 2017-18 school year.

While the official enrollment numbers won’t be counted until Sept. 15, Birr said the early count suggests attendance has “spiked up” from last year.

“We have a lot more coming into the district as well as from out of state,” Birr said. “That’s good to see.”

Birr said the junior high has especially felt an increase from a large sixth grade class. Elementary school Principal Mark Toelle said the school has about 400 students attending this year.

New teachers on board

New Lisbon welcomed five new teachers this year, including Olivia Deitelhoff, Victoria Shepherd, Becky Johnson, Cate Bernhagen and Lindsey Wagner.

“I really couldn’t be more excited to have these five new teachers,” Birr said. “They’re all really good people who care about New Lisbon. It’s great to see that.”

Deitelhoff, Shepherd, Johnson and Wagner will all be teaching at the elementary school, while Bernhagen will teach high school English. New Lisbon also hired Ashley Baker as a special education/school psychologist. Four of the six new staff members were present at the meeting and were welcomed by the board.

Kopplin to be honored

School board member Mark Kopplin will be inducted into the New Lisbon Athletic Hall of Fame Sept. 23. A reception will be held at the Opera House at 6 p.m., followed by a dinner.

Kopplin is a former teacher, coach and athletic director at New Lisbon.

Contact Kevin Damask at 608-963-7323 or on Twitter @kdamask