IV. Reflection

As a telling sign of a successful first year, every single student asked to “re-enlist” for the second year. We received many reports from parents on the enthusiasm they heard about the project. What we noticed among the “Elwha students” was that they had become close friends, crossing classes and grade levels. They had developed an identity with EHHS and academic pursuits that we sorely needed. We saw leaders emerge, out in the field in those rain storms, among students who were relatively quiet and unsure of their academic interests in their regular classrooms. We were immensely heartened to see trust develop among students with a variety of special personal challenges.

Last but not least, we can’t help but think that our amazing WASL scores were related to this new sense of identity that students developed and spread to the rest of the school: 100% success on writing, and only one or two students below the passing line in reading and math which was a significant improvement from the year previously.

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