Cascade students capitalize on performance

January 09, 1998


Staff Writer

Cascade students can look forward to visits from Baltimore's National Aquarium and new computer equipment as a reward for doing well in state assessment tests, officials said.

Officials from the National Aquarium take live exhibits and shell collections from the Chesapeake Bay into schools, said Cascade Elementary School Principal Johnetta Neal.

Neal will pay for the exhibit with $31,882 the school received for showing improvement in the Maryland School Performance Assessment Program.


Six Washington County schools were awarded nearly $200,000 for showing substantial improvement in the tests for two years.

Neal said the rest of the money at her school will be used to purchase hard drives for her school's 33 computers so students can do more writing and science projects.

The money also will be used to pay for substitute teachers on "teacher talk days," when regular instructors leave their classrooms to compare teaching strategies and discuss issues, Neal said.

Springfield Middle School Principal Roger Stenersen said his school will use the $45,661 it was awarded to buy 10 more computers and other equipment.

Last year, the school received $28,555 from the state for showing improvement in test scores, and this year, it received $250,000 through a Maryland Technology in Schools grant, Stenersen said.

That money was used to buy 25 computers, network the school's computers, and re-wire the school to provide a "pure power" source for the machines.

The re-wiring protects the computers from interference from other electrical equipment, Stenersen said.

"It truly is like Christmas. Our folks are feeling great. You can't take 10 steps without seeing a computer in our school now," said Stenersen.

The other schools that received money - Pleasant Valley Elementary, Sharpsburg Elementary, Williamsport Elementary and Hancock Middle/Senior High School - are meeting with their School Improvement Teams to decide how to spend the funds.

The Herald-Mail Articles