Las Vegas’ east valley schools receiving Zoom School Program’s focus

Classes begin for the 2016-17 Clark County School Year on Aug. 29, and returning students will find a few changes, particularly in the east valley, the area most greatly affected.

Many students who have been on a year-round schedule will be returning to a nine-month calendar. Five of the seven schools doing so are in the east valley, including Cortez Elementary School, 4245 E. Tonopah Ave.; Cox Elementary School, 3855 N. Timberlake Drive; Craig Elementary School, 2637 E. Gowan Road; Diaz Elementary School, 4450 E. Owens Ave.; and Woolley Elementary School, 3955 N. Timberlake Drive.

“We are glad to be able to move seven of our schools back to a nine-month schedule as it better aligns for families who have children attending multiple schools,” said CCSD Chief Student Achievement Officer Dr. Mike Barton in a recent press release.

Removing the seven schools from the year-round schedule will also save the district $1.8 million, according to the release. Plans for future schools in those areas are set to offset the need driven by population growth.

“The new schools scheduled to open will help ensure that those schools being moved back to a nine-month schedule will not have to return to a year-round schedule,” Barton wrote.

Only four of the 15 schools set to remain on a year-round schedule are located in the east valley, including Beckley Elementary School, 3223 Glenhurst Drive; Dearing Elementary School, 3046 Ferndale St.; Herr Elementary School, 6475 Eagle Creek Lane; and Lake Elementary School, 2904 Meteoro St.

One of the challenges that the district has faced is how to solve the problem of overcrowded classrooms. To address this, the district is set to open a replacement school in Lincoln Elementary School, 3010 Berg St. in North Las Vegas next summer.

Lincoln is one of eight new facilities under construction. The groundbreaking for a complete replacement of the school was June 21.

“This is one of the oldest buildings in the valley — it was built in 1955,” said Jennifer Newton, principal of the school. “We were definitely in need of an upgrade. I think just the idea of being in a brand new facility with everything clean and fresh and with bright colors is exciting. It’s somewhat of a bittersweet excitement for community because generations of families have attended this school.”

The school will have to operate without a playground or field for the rest of the school year (which is currently under construction), but Newton said she is looking forward to the new campus that is set to have a two-story classroom building for grades one through five.

All of the projects are being funded through the 2015 Capital Improvement Program, which is made possible with funds from the 1998 Capital Improvement Program.

The total projected bond fund for new schools and renovations is $4.1 billion.

East valley is also the de facto testing ground for the Zoom Schools Program for students who are limited in English proficiency. The Nevada Legislature allocated additional funding to provide all elementary Zoom Schools with the universal half-day preschool, full-day kindergarten and smaller kindergarten class sizes of 21 students maximum per teacher and free summer school programs that extend the school year by 17 days beyond the state-mandated 180 days of instruction.

“If a student is zoned for one of our Zoom Schools, as long as a student is 4 years old by Sept. 30, our cut off date, they can attend preschool,” said Lorna James-Cervantes, assistant chief student achievement officer supervising Performance Zone 5 for the district. “We’ve seen a lot of great growth with our students in the pre-k program. They’re coming into kindergarten on grade level and sometimes above where you would expect a kindergartener to start.”

Many of the students who have attended preschool in Zoom Schools move on to first-grade skills in the middle of their kindergarten year and enter first grade ahead of expectations. The program seems to have been most effective with the younger students, but James-Cervantes said that for students who have been in U.S. schools for several years and are still struggling with English, the district has had marked success with Zoom School Reading Centers to support early literacy skills.

“This past year, we served 2,732 students in our reading centers,” she said, adding that “1,518 of those students exited on grade level, ready to face any challenge. In some cases, we find that they’re able to surpass their fellow students.”

In the upper grades of elementary school and in middle and high school, the district is teaching English and subject area content simultaneously, working with the language skills necessary to understand other subjects, such as math and science.

The program has nearly doubled this year. It was primarily piloted in east valley, with 13 of the original 16 schools in the program located there, including Cambeiro Elementary School, 1555 E. Hacienda Ave.; Cortez; Craig; Detwiler Elementary School, 1960 Ferrell St.; Diaz ; Earl Elementary School, 1463 Marion Drive; Herron Elementary School, 2421 N. Kenneth Road; Lunt Elementary School, 2701 E. Harris Ave.; Martinez Elementary School, 350 E. Judson Ave.; Paradise Elementary School, 900 Cottage Grove Ave.; C.P. Squires Elementary School, 1312 E. Tonopah Ave.; Tate Elementary School, 2450 Lincoln Road; and Tom Williams Elementary School, 3000 E. Tonopah Ave.

The Nevada Legislature voted to continue and expand the program for the 2016-17 school year with 13 schools added with 10 of them in east valley, including Dailey Elementary School, 2001 E. Reno Ave.; Edwards Elementary School, 4551 Diamond Head Drive; Hewetson Elementary School, 701 N. 20th St.; Lynch Elementary School, 4850 Kell Lane; Moore Elementary School, 491 N. Lamb Blvd., Rowe Elementary School, 4338 S. Bruce St.; Stanford Elementary School, 5350 Harris Ave.; William Orr Middle School, 1562 E. Katie Ave.; Robinson Middle School, 825 Marion Drive; and Global Community High School, 3801 E. Washington Ave.

“We chose these new schools based on the number of English language learners there are at the school,” James-Cervantes said. “We have a lot of great opportunities for students in our schools. Some schools are already showing great growth in language acquisition scores.”

Student with several primary languages are involved in the Zoom Program, but the majority of the student’s primary language is Spanish. The east valley is home to the highest concentration of Spanish speakers in the valley. Several of the schools have programs and extracurricular activities that cater to that population, including Mariachi bands. Rancho High School’s Mariachi de Oro, directed by instructor Robert Lopez, was invited to perform in Washington, D.C., in May 2016.The students raised $16,000 through community performances, events and concerts to fund the trip but need an additional $12,000 to reach their goal. Members of the business community surprised the students with a gift of $14,000 and congratulated them on their success just days before the trip.

The zoning for Clark County Schools remains virtually unchanged with one exception being a slight shifting of boundaries for Manch/Lowman Elementary schools precipitated by the closure of Heard Elementary School on Nellis Air Force Base.

One of the more sweeping changes this year involves senior testing. Assembly Bill 288 passed in 2013 by the Nevada State Legislature, eliminating the high school final exam, known as the Nevada High School Proficiency Examinations. The Class of 2017 will instead take four End of Course Examinations, which will be administered in math and English with emphasis on algebra, geometry, mathematics, reading comprehension and writing.

The classes of 2017 and 2018 will need to take the End of Course Examinations, and no passing scores are required. The Class of 2019 will be the first class of students required to receive a passing score on the End of Course Examinations to graduate, according to the State of Nevada Department of Education’s website, doe.nv.gov.

To reach East Valley View reporter F. Andrew Taylor, email ataylor@viewnews.com or call 702-380-4532.

Local Videos
Butterflies At The Springs Preserve
The butterfly habitat is now open at the Springs Preserve. Learn about butterflies and take in the peaceful surroundings. (Mat Luschek / Review-Journal)
The Bellagio Conservatory's spring display has a Japanese theme
The Bellagio's conservatory is hosting around 65,000 flowers, to form a Japanese theme this spring. (Mat Luschek / Review-Journal)
Bonnie Springs closes (Caroline Brehman/Kimber Laux)
Bonnie Springs Ranch near Las Vegas officially closed its gates Sunday, March 17, 2019. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Honoring a fallen North Las Vegas Police officer at his namesake school
The 20th Annual Raul P. Elizondo Honor Day celebrates the fallen North Las Vegas Police officer's legacy at his namesake school. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Windy day in Las Vegas Valley
The Review-Journal's camera on the under-construction Las Vegas Stadium the was buffered by high winds on Wednesday, March 14, 2019. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
March gloom falls on Las Vegas
After a rainy overnight, gloomy skies hover over Las Vegas Tuesday morning. (Mat Luschek/Review-Journal)
John Katsilometes gets his head shaved at St. Baldrick's
Las Vegas Review-Journal man-about-town columnist John Katsilometes gets his head shaved by former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman during St. Baldrick's Foundation shave-a-thon on the Brooklyn Bridge at New York-New York in Las Vegas Friday, March 8, 2019. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
The Blue Angels take flight over Las Vegas Strip
The Blue Angels’ U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron flew their signature Delta formation over a part of the Las Vegas Strip, McCarran International Airport and east Las Vegas and were scheduled to fly over Hoover Dam. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @Vegas88s
Gross World Records
A group of about 20 children gathered around a TV at Sahara West Library on Feb. 27 for a history lesson on the most disgusting world records.
Graduation for Renewing HOPE program
The Renewing HOPE program graduation for homeless who spend nine months in Catholic Charities program. Graduates are preparing to enter the workforce. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Car crashes into Starbucks near Las Vegas Strip
Lt. William Matchko of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police gives details about a car crashing into a Starbucks at Sahara Avenue and Paradise Road, near the Las Vegas Strip, on Friday, March 1, 2019. (Jessica Terrones/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Car crashed into PT’s Gold
A 60-year-old man who police believe was impaired drove into a PT’s Gold at Silverado Ranch and Decatur boulevards Thursday night, Metropolitan Police Department Lt. William Matchko said. The driver was hospitalized and is expected to survive. A man inside the bar was hit by debris but drove himself to the hospital, Matchko said. (Katelyn Newberg/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Driver crashes vehicle into PT’s tavern in south Las Vegas (part 1)
A driver suspected of impairment crashed a vehicle into the wall of a PT’s Gold tavern, at 4880 W. Silverado Ranch Blvd., in Las Vegas on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019. (Katelyn Newberg/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Driver crashes vehicle into PT’s tavern in south Las Vegas (pullout)
A driver suspected of impairment crashed a vehicle into the wall of a PT’s Gold tavern, at 4880 W. Silverado Ranch Blvd., in Las Vegas on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019. (Katelyn Newberg/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Kids Read Books To Dogs At The Animal Foundation In Las Vegas
Kids from local Las Vegas elementary schools took part, Thursday, in a program at the Animal Foundation, where they read books to dogs. (Mat Luschek/Review-Journal)
Pioneer Trail highlights historic locations in West Las Vegas
The Pioneer Trail, a 16-site route of historically significant locations in Las Vegas, starts at the Springs Preserve and snakes east until it reaches above the brim of downtown. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutefsya
Vegas Warm Weather Hits Las Vegas Valley
Between Feb. 20-21, parts of the Las Vegas Valley were hit with 7.5" of snow. Less than a week later, it was sunny with temperatures in the 70s. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dr. S. Jay Hazan, a World War II veteran, talks about his arrest at the VA Hospital
Dr. S. Jay Hazan, a World War II Army veteran, was arrested in November after he caused a ruckus at the VA Hospital in North Las Vegas and stole his driver's car keys. He was arraigned on Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019, and the charges will be dropped after 60 days. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/ Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Claytee White talks about Black History Month
An interview with Claytee White, director of the Oral History Research Center at UNLV. (Benjamin Hager/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Reflecting on the Moulin Rouge and a segregated Vegas
Former employees of the Moulin Rouge, the first integrated hotel-casino in Nevada, talk about what it was like in the brief six months the casino was open. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas home prices
Home prices rose in every ZIP code in the Las Vegas Valley in 2018 for the second year in a row, according to SalesTraq. Prices grew fastest in older, more centrally located areas. But prices were highest in the suburbs. The top three ZIP codes for price growth were 89119 (29.8%), 89146 (25%) and 89030 (24.6%). The top three ZIP codes for median sales prices were 89138 ($464,500), 89135 ($420,500) and 89052 ($370,000).
Wagonwheel Drive overpass reopens after ice closure
Overpass at Wagonwheel Drive reopens after ice on the onramp caused the ramp to be shut down, Feb. 22, 2019. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Keeping warm at the city of Las Vegas’ homeless courtyard
With help from the city of Las Vegas, a Salvation Army shelter stays open during the day Thursday and Friday, offering a safe place for the homeless to find respite from freezing temperatures and snow. (Chase Stevens/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Sloppy, Slushy Road Conditions Lead to Slow Traffic
Traffic slowed to a crawl on Jones are near Russell as conditions worsened Thursday. (Mat Luschek/Review-Journal)
Winter storm blankets west side of Las Vegas Valley
On Wednesday evening through early Thursday a winter storm dumped more than 7 1/2 inches of snow on some parts of the Las Vegas Valley. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas snow day for children
Las Vegas kids play in the snow that fell on Feb. 21, 2019. (Belinda Englman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Snow closes Red Rock Canyon, residents enjoy rare snowfall
The greater Las Vegas area was hit with snowfall on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2019. This video shows the areas surrounding Red Rock Canyon and the Summerlin community. Video by: Heidi Fang/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Las Vegas kids attend school in the snow
Las Vegas children attend school during a rare snowstorm on Feb. 21, 2019. Staton Elementary School and other CCSD schools remained open. (Glenn Cook/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
People enjoying the snow in Summerlin
Fox Hill Park in Summerlin was busy Thursday morning, Feb. 21, 2019, with people enjoying the rare snow that fell overnight. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
NHP advises motorists to take caution during Las Vegas snowstorm
NHP advised motorists to take caution during the snowstorm in Las Vegas. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
It is a rainy Valentine's Day in Las Vegas - Video
These scenes come from the Las Vegas Stadium LiveCam (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
Home Front Page Footer Listing