Marcellus Schools scores high on annual report

"Our regents scores are comparable to Skaneateles and Westhill, F-M, J-D and Cazenovia," he said, adding: "Out of all those districts, [we have] one of the lowest costs per pupil."

The percentage of students performing at the mastery level fluctuated in 2009-10 from previous years. For instance, 85 percent of students taking the Comprehensive French regents scored an 85 or higher, up from 74 percent in 2008-09. Mastery level for the Spanish regents, taken by 106 students in 2009-10, dropped to 50 percent from 82 percent the previous year.

"We're always looking to improve our mastery rates, take a look at students performing at 85 percent or better," Tice said.

But students are passing at an incredibly high rate. In terms of students passing their foreign language regents exams, the numbers couldn't be better. 100 percent of students taking both the French and Spanish regents exams passed in each of the past three years.

Tice said the district has strived to make taking foreign language a desirable option for students. "The world is getting smaller every day," he said. 98 percent of students graduated with a regents diploma, and 71 percent graduated with advanced regents diplomas - which requires students complete a foreign language. 71 percent was third place among area districts, topped only by Skaneateles and Fayetteville-Manlius schools.

Tice expects the school's success with foreign languages to continue. At the start of this school year, Marcellus added a seventh grade exploratory class to its curriculum where students take rotate between Spanish and French for 20 weeks, then decide which language they will pursue. The class is taught by Audrey Misainno, who is certified in both languages.

"It allows the students to make an informed decision," Tice said. "Before they would just rely on a neighbor or sibling ... now they actually get a little exposure to both in seventh grade."

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