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Pathways to Excellence

Toppenish High School, Toppenish

June 27, 2014

When it comes to helping historically under served students realize their potential, Toppenish High School is bucking state and national trends.

When it comes to helping historically under served students realize their potential, Toppenish High School is bucking state and national trends. Eighty-eight percent of the school’s students are Latino and 8 percent are American Indian. One hundred percent qualify for free or reduced-price lunches. While many schools and districts have not been able to create opportunities for success for Latino or American Indian students or those from low-income families, Toppenish High is helping all of its students excel, with a graduation rate of nearly 90 percent.

At Toppenish High School, the past decade has seen dramatic growth in reading and writing achievement, and the school is working toward improvement in math and science scores through its widely hailed STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) program, which earned a Golden Apple Award in 2012.

Toppenish High strives to create meaningful relationships with students and families over time. Each student and family works with one teacher-advisor through all four years; this reliable point of contact contributes to the home-school rapport that is cited as a best practice among transformative schools. Regular reviews of student data help ensure that intervention is immediate if a student is struggling.

Thanks to a skilled and committed staff, Toppenish High School is achieving its mission “to develop passionate, empowered individuals ready for a world with infinite possibilities.”

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