Northwest Area School District

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Northwest Area School District
Map of Luzerne County Pennsylvania School Districts.png
Location
Luzerne County, Pennsylvania
Information
Superintendent Dr. Ronald Grevera, Superintendent
Grades K-12
Mascot Ranger
Website

The Northwest Area School District is a public school district in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.[1] The Northwest Rangers, named after their mascot, the Ranger,[2] are comprised from the boroughs of New Columbus and Shickshinny, as well as the townships of Hunlock, Union, Huntington, and Fairmount. (A map of the district.) The student body is separated into a Primary, Intermediate and Junior/Senior High School. The NASD encompasses approximately 117 square miles. According to 2000 federal census data, it serves a resident population of 9,172. In 2009, the resident's Per Capita Income was $16,665 while the Median Family Income was $42,524.[3]

The Northwest Area School District formerly contained three elementary schools that contribute to the student body of the Northwest Area High School. These schools were: Huntington Mills Elementary School, Hunlock Township Elementary School, and F.L. Garrison Memorial Elementary School.[4] At the end of the 2009–2010 school year, the Garrison Elementary School was closed. Upon the closing, the remaining two elementary schools were renamed and the students re-distributed between them. The new school names are the Northwest Area Primary School and Northwest Area Intermediate School. The high school retained its former name, The Northwest Area Junion/Senior High School.[5]

The district has approximately 1312 students in grades K-12 in 2010. Enrollment has been projected, by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, to decline by over 300 more pupils by 2020[6]

Mission and vision statements[edit]

"The Northwest Area School District, in partnership with the community, will provide a safe, supportive environment that inspires an appreciation of learning and prepares our students to be productive, responsible citizens in a diverse society."[2]

Vision – "To maintain high standards of learning for all students and to offer a range of opportunities so that every student is able to reach his/her maximum potential."[2]

Academic achievement[edit]

Northwest Area School District was ranked 379th out of 498 Pennsylvania school districts in 2011 by the Pittsburgh Business Times. The ranking was based on student academic performance based on the PSSAs for: reading, writing, math and two years of science.[7]

  • 2010 – 347th [8]
  • 2009 – 293rd
  • 2008 – 266th
  • 2007 – 236th out of 501 Pennsylvania school districts.[9]

In 2009 the academic achievement of the pupils in the district was in the 11th percentile among Pennsylvanian's 500 school districts. Scale (0–99; 100 is state best) [10]

Graduation Rate

  • 2010 – 95% [11]
  • 2009 – 92%
  • 2008 – 96% [12]
  • 2007 – 95% [13]

PSSA Results[edit]

Northwest Area Junior Senior High School
Address
243 Thorne Hill Rd
Shickshinny, Pennsylvania, 18655-9201
United States
Information
School number 2958
Principal Mr. J. Ryan Miner

In 2010, the high school is in Making Progress: in School Improvement I status due to chronically low performing student achievement. In 2009, the high school declined to Did Not Make AYP School Improvement I status due ongoing to low student achievement.[14]

11th Grade Reading

  • 2010 – 63% on grade level. In Pennsylvania, 67% of 11th graders are on grade level. (100 pupils enrolled) [15]
  • 2009 – 63%, State – 65% [16]
  • 2008 – 65%, State – 65%
  • 2007 – 66%, State – 65% [17]

11th Grade Math:

  • 2010 – 38%, on grade level. In Pennsylvania, 59% of 11th graders are on grade level.
  • 2009 – 35%, State – 56%.
  • 2008 – 41%, State – 56%
  • 2007 – 49%, State – 53%

11th Grade Science:

  • 2010 – 43% on grade level. State – 39% of 11th graders were on grade level.
  • 2009 – 45%, State – 40% [18]
  • 2008 – 36%, State – 35.5%

Graduation requirements[edit]

By law, all Pennsylvania secondary school students must complete a graduation project as a part of their eligibility to graduate from high school. The type of project, its rigor and its expectations are set by the individual school district.[19]

Beginning with the class of 2016, students must take the Keystone Exams in Literature, Biology 1 and Algebra 1.[20]

College remediation[edit]

According to a Pennsylvania Department of Education study released in January 2009, 28% of Northwest Area High School graduates required remediation in mathematics and or reading before they were prepared to take college level courses in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education or community colleges.[21] Less than 66% of Pennsylvania high school graduates, who enroll in a four-year college in Pennsylvania, will earn a bachelor's degree within six years. Among Pennsylvania high school graduates pursuing an associate degree, only one in three graduate in three years.[22] Per the Pennsylvania Department of Education, one in three recent high school graduates who attend Pennsylvania's public universities and community colleges takes at least one remedial course in math, reading or English.

Dual enrollment[edit]

The high school offers a dual enrollment program. This state-funded program permits high school students to take courses, at local higher education institutions, to earn college credits. Students remain enrolled at their high school. The courses count towards high school graduation requirements and towards earning a college degree. The students continue to have full access to activities at their high school. The college credits are offered at a deeply discounted rate. The state offers a small grant to assist students in costs for tuition, fees and books.[23] Under the Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement, many Pennsylvania colleges and universities accept these credits for students who transfer to their institutions.[24] The Pennsylvania College Credit Transfer System reported in 2009, that students saved nearly $35.4 million by having their transferred credits count towards a degree under the new system.[25]

For the 2009–10 funding year, the school district received a state grant of $9,847 for its dual enrollment program.[26]

Junior high school[edit]

8th Grade Reading
2010 – 69% on grade level. In Pennsylvania, 81% of 8th graders on grade level. (124 pupils enrolled) 2009 – 79%, State – 80% (117 pupils enrolled) [27]

  • 2008 – 84%, State – 78% [28]
  • 2007 – 85%, State – 75%

8th Grade Math:

  • 2010 – 68% on grade level. In Pennsylvania, 75% of 8th graders are on grade level.[29]
  • 2009 – 66%, State – 71% [30]
  • 2008 – 71%, State – 70%
  • 2007 – 74%, State – 68%

8th Grade Science:

  • 2010 – 54% on grade level. State – 57% of 8th graders were on grade level.
  • 2009 – 62%, State – 55% [31]
  • 2008 – 56%, State – 52%

7th Grade Reading

  • 2010 – 67% on grade level. In Pennsylvania, 73% of 7th graders on grade level. (98 pupils enrolled)
  • 2009 – 62%, State – 71% (126 pupils enrolled)
  • 2008 – 68%, State – 70%
  • 2007 – 70%, State – 67%

7th Grade Math:

  • 2010 – 77% on grade level. In Pennsylvania, 77% of 7th graders are on grade level.[32]
  • 2009 – 66%, State – 75% [30]
  • 2008 – 65%, State – 71%
  • 2007 – 69%, State – 67%

Northwest Area Primary School[edit]

Northwest Area Primary School
Address
417 Shickshinny Lake Rd.
Shickshinny, Pennsylvania 18655
Information
Principal Mr. Joseph Rasmus

Formerly the Huntington Mills School, the school is located in Huntington Mills, Pennsylvania. It houses grades Kindergarten through 2nd grade.

Northwest Area Intermediate School[edit]

Northwest Area Intermediate School
Address
21 Sunset Lake Rd
Shickshinny, Pennsylvania 18655
Information
Principal Mr. Joseph Rasmus

Formerly the Hunlock Creek Elementary School. The school is located in Hunlock Township. It houses grades 3 through 6.

Special education[edit]

The district administration reported that 257 students or 19% were receiving special education services in 2009.[33][34]

The District engages in identification procedures to ensure that eligible students receive an appropriate educational program consisting of special education and related services, individualized to meet student needs. At no cost to the parents, these services are provided in compliance with state and federal law; and are reasonably calculated to yield meaningful educational benefit and student progress. To identify students who may be eligible for special education, various screening activities are conducted on an ongoing basis. These screening activities include: review of group-based data (cumulative records, enrollment records, health records, report cards, ability and achievement test scores); hearing, vision, motor, and speech/language screening; and review by the Instructional Support Team or Student Assistance Team. When screening results suggest that the student may be eligible, the District seeks parental consent to conduct a multidisciplinary evaluation. Parents who suspect their child is eligible may verbally request a multidisciplinary evaluation from a professional employee of the District or contact the Supervisor of Special Education.

In 2010, the state of Pennsylvania provided $1,026,815,000 for Special Education services. The funds were distributed to districts based on a state policy which estimates that 16% of the district's pupils are receiving special education services. This funding is in addition to the state's basic education per pupil funding, as well as, all other state and federal funding.[35]

Northwest Area School District received a $824,454 supplement for special education services in 2010.[36]

Gifted education[edit]

The District Administration reported that 37 or 2.26% of its students were gifted in 2009.[37] By law, the district must provide mentally gifted programs at all grade levels. The primary emphasis is on enrichment and acceleration of the regular education curriculum through a push in model with the gifted instructor in the classroom with the regular instructor. This approach permits such specialized instructional strategies as tiered assignments, curriculum compacting, flexible grouping, learning stations, independent projects and independent contracts. Students identified as gifted attending the High School have access to honors and advanced placement courses, and dual enrollment with local colleges. The referral process for a gifted evaluation can be initiated by teachers or parents by contacting the student’s building principal and requesting an evaluation. All requests must be made in writing. To be eligible for mentally gifted programs in Pennsylvania, a student must have a cognitive ability of at least 130 as measured on a standardized ability test by a certified school psychologist. Other factors that indicate giftedness will also be considered for eligibility.[38]

Bullying policy[edit]

The school district administration reported there was 1 incident of bullying in the district in 2009.[39][40]

The Northwest Area School Board has not provided the district's antibully policy online.[41] All Pennsylvania schools are required to have an anti-bullying policy incorporated into their Code of Student Conduct. The policy must identify disciplinary actions for bullying and designate a school staff person to receive complaints of bullying. The policy must be available on the school's website and posted in every classroom. All Pennsylvania public schools must provide a copy of its anti-bullying policy to the Office for Safe Schools every year, and shall review their policy every three years. Additionally, the district must conduct an annual review of that policy with students.[42] The Center for Schools and Communities works in partnership with the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime & Delinquency and the Pennsylvania Department of Education to assist schools and communities as they research, select and implement bullying prevention programs and initiatives.[43] The school has a program that allows students to anonymously place requests about being bullied. Guidance councillors within the school will help students with any issue they are having.

Education standards relating to student safety and antiharassment programs are described in the 10.3. Safety and Injury Prevention in the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Health, Safety and Physical Education.[44]

Budget[edit]

In 2008, the district reported a $623,610 in an unreserved-undesignated fund balance. The designated fund balance was reported as $1,146,110.[45]

In 2007, the district employed over 94 teachers. The average teacher salary in the district was $51,723 for 180 days worked.[46] In 2009 the district reported employing over 90 teachers with a salary range of $33,426 to $67,356[47] Additionally, the teachers receive a benefits package that includes: health insurance, life insurance, paid sick and personal days, reimbursement for college courses and a retirement bonus based on longevity. Teachers receive extra compensation for additional duties and for extracurricular and sports coaching.[48]

The Northwest Area School District administrative costs per pupil in 2008 was $688.61 in 2008. The lowest administrative cost per pupil in Pennsylvania was $398 per pupil.[49]

According to District officials, in school year 2007–08 the NASD provided basic educational services to 1,348 pupils through the employment of 104 teachers, 67 full-time and part-time support personnel, and 10 administrators.

In July 2010, the Pennsylvania Auditor General conducted a performance audit of the district. The multiple findings were reported to the school board and administration.[50]

In 2009, the district reported having $22,982 in outstanding debt.[51]

The district is funded by a combination of: a local income tax, a property tax, a real estate transfer tax, coupled with substantial funding from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the federal government. Grants can provide an opportunity to supplement school funding without raising local taxes. In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, pension income and Social Security income are exempted from state personal income tax and local earned income tax regardless of the individual's level of wealth.[52]

State basic education funding[edit]

For the 2010–11 school year, the state basic education funding was 2.81% for $7,326,925. The highest increase in Luzerne County was awarded to Hazleton Area School District at 12,61%. Sixteen Pennsylvania school districts received an increase over 10%. One hundred fifty Pennsylvania school districts received the base 2% increase. Among Pennsylvania school districts, the highest increase in 2010–11 went to Kennett Consolidated School District in Chester County which received a 23.65% increase in state funding.[53] The amount of increase each school district receives is determined by the Governor and the Secretary of Education through the allocation set in the state budget proposal made in February each year.[54]

For the 2009–2010 budget year the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania provided a 3.32% increase in Basic Education funding for Northwest Area School District a total of $7,125,260. The state Basic Education Funding to the district in 2008–09 was $6.896,624. The highest increase in BEF for the school districts in Luzerne County was awarded to Hazleton Area School District at a 13.36% increase. The highest increase in Pennsylvania went to Muhlenberg School District of Berks County which received an increase of 22.31 percent. Sixteen school districts received an increase in funding of over 10 percent in 2009.[55]

In 2009, the district reported that 513 students were eligible for a federal free or reduced-price lunch due to low family income.[56]

Accountability Block Grants[edit]

Beginning in 2004–2005, the state launched the Accountability Block Grant school funding. This program has provided $1.5 billion to Pennsylvania’s school districts. The Accountability Block Grant program requires that its taxpayer dollars are focused on specific interventions that are most likely to increase student academic achievement. These interventions include: teacher training, all-day kindergarten, lower class size K-3rd grade, literacy and math coaching programs that provide teachers with individualized job-embedded professional development to improve their instruction, before or after school tutoring assistance to struggling students, For 2010–11 the Northwest Area School District applied for and received $241,215 in addition to all other state and federal funding. The district used the funding to provide full-day kindergarten to 92 pupils, to reduce class size K-3rd grade, to develop new curriculum, to improve instruction by using teacher coaches in classrooms and to increase instructional time for struggling students through before and after school tutoring and more.[57][58]

Classrooms for the Future grant[edit]

The Classroom for the Future state program provided districts with hundreds of thousands of extra state funding to buy laptop computers for each core curriculum high school class (English, Science, History, Math) and paid for teacher training to optimize the computers use. The program was funded from 2006–2009. Northwest Area School District received $67,933 in funding in 2006–07. In 2007–08 it received $75,000. The district received $45,413 in 2008–09 for a total funding of $188,346.[59]

Federal Stimulus grant[edit]

Northwest Area School District received an extra $119,410 in ARRA – Federal Stimulus money to be used only in specific programs like special education and meeting the academic needs of low-income students.[60]

Race to the Top grant[edit]

School district officials did not apply for the Race to the Top federal grant which would have brought the district hundreds of thousands of additional federal dollars for improving student academic achievement.[61] Participation required the administration, the school board and the local teachers' union to sign an agreement to prioritize improving student academic success. In Pennsylvania, 120 public school districts and 56 charter schools agreed to participate. Pennsylvania was not approved for the grant. The failure of districts to agree to participate was cited as one reason that Pennsylvania was not approved.[62]

Common Cents state initiative[edit]

The Northwest Area School Board decided to not participate in the Pennsylvania Department of Education Common Cents program. The program called for the state to audit the district, at no cost to local taxpayers, to identify ways the district could save tax dollars.[63] After the review of the information, the district was not required to implement the recommended cost savings changes.

Real estate taxes[edit]

The school board levied a real estate tax of 9.1966 mills in 2010–11.[64] A mill is $1 of tax for every $1,000 of a property's assessed value. Irregular property reassessments have become a serious issue in the commonwealth as it creates a significant disparity in taxation within a community and across a region. On the local level, Pennsylvania district revenues are dominated by two main sources: 1) Property tax collections, which account for the vast majority (between 75–85%) of local revenues; and 2) Act 511 tax collections, which are around 15% of revenues for school districts.[65]

  • 2009–10 – 8.012 mills [66]

In 2008, Luzerne county conducted a property value reassessment.[67]

  • 2008–09 – 224.5000 mills [68]

Act 1 Adjusted index[edit]

The Act 1 of 2006 Index regulates the rates at which each school district can raise property taxes in Pennsylvania. Districts are not allowed to raise taxes above that index unless they allow voters to vote by referendum, or they seek an exception from the state Department of Education. The base index for the 2011–2012 school year is 1.4 percent, but the Act 1 Index can be adjusted higher, depending on a number of factors, such as property values and the personal income of district residents. Act 1 included 10 exceptions, including: increasing pension costs, increases in special education costs, a catastrophe like a fire or flood, increase in health insurance costs for contracts in effect in 2006 or dwindling tax bases. The base index is the average of the percentage increase in the statewide average weekly wage, as determined by the PA Department of Labor and Industry, for the preceding calendar year and the percentage increase in the Employment Cost Index for Elementary and Secondary Schools, as determined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the U.S. Department of Labor, for the previous 12-month period ending June 30. For a school district with a market value/personal income aid ratio (MV/PI AR) greater than 0.4000, its index equals the base index multiplied by the sum of .75 and its MV/PI AR for the current year.[69]

The School District Adjusted Index for the Northwest Area School District 2006–2007 through 2011–2012.[70]

  • 2006–07 – 5.5%, Base 3.9%
  • 2007–08 – 4.9%, Base 3.4%
  • 2008–09 – 6.3%, Base 4.4%
  • 2009–10 – 5.9%, Base 4.1%
  • 2010–11 – 4.2%, Base 2.9%
  • 2011–12 – 2.0%, Base 1.4%

The Northwest Area School Board applied for exceptions to exceed the Act 1 index for the budget in 2011, including the district's spending on special education, to maintain local effort in taxation, to maintain revenues, and for pension costs.[71] In the Spring of 2010, 135 of 500 Pennsylvania school boards asked to exceed their adjusted index. Approval was granted to 133 of them and 128 sought an exception for pension costs increases.[72]

Property tax relief[edit]

In 2010, the Homestead/Farmstead Property Tax Relief from gambling for the Northwest Area School District was $169 per approved permanent primary residence. In the district, 2,869 property owners applied for the tax relief.[73] In 2010 within Luzerne County, the highest reported amount went to Wilkes-Barre Area School District set at $210 per approved homestead. The property tax relief was subtracted from the total annual school property tax bill. Property owners apply for the relief through the county Treasurer's office. Farmers can qualify for a farmstead exemption on building used for agricultural purposes. The farm must be at least 10 contiguous acres and must be the primary residence of the owner. Farmers can qualify for both the homestead exemption and the farmstead exemption. Pennsylvania awarded the highest property tax relief to residents of the Chester-Upland School District in Delaware County at $641 per homestead and farmstead in 2010.[74] CUSD was given $632 in 2009. This was the second year they were the top recipient.

Additionally, the Pennsylvania Property Tax/Rent Rebate program is provided for low income Pennsylvanians aged 65 and older; widows and widowers aged 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 for homeowners. The maximum rebate for both homeowners and renters is $650. Applicants can exclude one-half (1/2) of their Social Security income, consequently individuals who have income substantially greater than $35,000, may still qualify for a rebate. Individuals must apply annually for the rebate. This can be taken in addition to Homestead/Farmstead Property Tax Relief.

Property taxes in Pennsylvania are relatively high on a national scale. According to the Tax Foundation, Pennsylvania ranked 11th in the U.S. in 2008 in terms of property taxes paid as a percentage of home value (1.34%) and 12th in the country in terms of property taxes as a percentage of income (3.55%).[75]

Extracurriculars[edit]

The district's students have access to a variety of clubs, activities and sports. Eligibility for participation is determined by the school board policy.[76]

By Pennsylvania law, all K-12 students in the district, including those who attend a private nonpublic school, cyber charter school, charter school and those homeschooled, are eligible to participate in the extracurricular programs, including all athletics. They must meet the same eligibility rules as the students enrolled in the district's schools.[77]

Sports[edit]

Edward "Ed" Gayeski was a longtime coach of the Northwest Rangers basketball team, whom in his career had the most wins among all coaches in Pennsylvania, totaling 744 wins and 195 losses (.792 PCT). Gayeski lead the team to become two-time back-to-back PIAA State Class A basketball champions in 1982–83 and 1983–84, going 65–1 in the two years.[78][79] He also brought the team to 20 wins in 24 of 34 seasons, 13 league titles and 14 District Championships.[80] Coach Edward Gayeski died in the summer of 1985.[79]

Governance[edit]

The school district is governed by 9 individually elected board members (serve four-year terms), the Pennsylvania State Board of Education, the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Pennsylvania General Assembly.[81] The federal government controls programs it funds like Title I funding for low-income children in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the No Child Left Behind Act, which mandates the district focus resources on student success in acquiring reading and math skills.

The Commonwealth Foundation for Public Policy Alternatives Sunshine Review gave the school board and district administration a "F" for transparency based on a review of "What information can people find on their school district's website". It examined the school district's website for information regarding; taxes, the current budget, meetings, school board members names and terms, contracts, audits, public records information and more.[82]

Former school buildings[edit]

Garrison Memorial School[edit]

Garrison Elementary School, pictured in the background

The school is located in Shickshinny, on West Vine Street.

On May 11, 2010 in a 6–2 vote, the Northwest Area School Board voted to close the Garrison School. Students attending this school are to be reassigned to the Huntington Mills and Hunlock Creek elementary schools. According to a Times Leader article "[the] Garrison was one of the first schools in the district and a high school at one time. Closure of the school will also mean eliminating the Head Start program, which operates from that building."[83]

References[edit]

  1. ^ EdNA: Northwest Area SD Accessed 2010-06-08
  2. ^ a b c Northwest Area School District website Retrieved 2010-07-30
  3. ^ American Fact Finder, US Census Bureau, 2010
  4. ^ City-Data.com Revised 2009-03-13
  5. ^ Citizens Voice: Northwest Area reroutes buses Retrieved 2010-07-30
  6. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Enrollment Projections 2010 Northwest Area School District report". 
  7. ^ Pittsburgh Business Times (May 1, 2010). "Statewide Ranking Information 2011". 
  8. ^ Pittsburgh Business Times (May 1, 2010). "Statewide Honor Roll.". 
  9. ^ Three of top school districts in state hail from Allegheny County, Pittsburgh Business Times, May 23, 2007
  10. ^ Northwest Area School District 2009 PSSA RESULTS
  11. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Northwest Area School District Report Card 2010 data table". 
  12. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Northwest Area School District Academic Achievement Report Card 2008". 
  13. ^ The Pennsylvania Partnership for Children, 2008. "Pennsylvania High School Graduation Rates report,". 
  14. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "NORTHWEST AREA HS School AYP Overview 2010". 
  15. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "2009–2010 PSSA and AYP Results". 
  16. ^ The Times-Tribune. (2009). "Grading Our Schools database, 2009 PSSA results,". 
  17. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2007). "PSSA Math and Reading results". 
  18. ^ Grading Our Schools database, 2009 Science PSSA results, The Times-Tribune. 2009
  19. ^ Pennsylvania State Board of Education. "Pennsylvania Code §4.24 (a) High school graduation requirements". 
  20. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Pennsylvania’s New Graduation Requirements". 
  21. ^ Pennsylvania College Remediation Report
  22. ^ National Center for Education Statistics
  23. ^ 2010–2011 Pennsylvania Department of Education – Dual Enrollment Guidelines.
  24. ^ Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement. Site accessed March 2010.
  25. ^ Report: PA College Credit Transfer System Makes Higher Education More Affordable, Accessible, Pennsylvania Department of Education. April 29, 2010
  26. ^ PA Dual Enrollment School District Grants 2010–11 Fall Appendix 2
  27. ^ Northwest Area 2009 PSSA Results, The Times-Tribune, Grading Our Schools Database, 2009.
  28. ^ Northwest Area School District Academic Achievement Report Card 2008 and 2007
  29. ^ 2010 PSSAs: Reading, Math, Writing and Science Results Pennsylvania Department of Education Report released September 14, 2010
  30. ^ a b 2009 PSSAs: Reading, Math, Writing and Science Results Pennsylvania Department of Education Report
  31. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education Report on Science PSSA 2009 by Schools. August 2009.
  32. ^ 2010 PSSAs: Reading, Math, Writing and Science Results Pennsylvania Department of Education Report
  33. ^ Northwest Area School District Special Education Performance on State Performance Plan (SPP) Targets School Year 2008–2009
  34. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Bureau of Special Education". 
  35. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Pennsylvania Special Education Funding". 
  36. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (July 2010). "Special Education Funding from Pennsylvania State_2010-2011". 
  37. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (Revised December 1, 2009 Child Count (Collected July 2010)). "Gifted Students as Percentage of Total Enrollment by School District/Charter School". 
  38. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education and Pennsylvania School Board. "CHAPTER 16. Special Education For Gifted Students". Retrieved February 4, 2011. 
  39. ^ Northwest Area SD School Safety Annual Report 2008 – 2009
  40. ^ Pennsylvania Safe Schools Online Reports
  41. ^ The website of the Northwest Area School District
  42. ^ Regular Session 2007–2008 House Bill 1067, Act 61 Section 6 page 8
  43. ^ Center for Safe Schools of Pennsylvania, Bullying Prevention advisory
  44. ^ "Pennsylvania Academic Standards". Pennsylvania State Board of Education. 
  45. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education report on Fund Balances by Local Education Agency 1997 to 2008
  46. ^ Fenton, Jacob, Average classroom teacher salary in Luzerne County, 2006–07. The Morning Call. Accessed March 2009.
  47. ^ PA School Salaries – School Payroll, openPAgov.org
  48. ^ Northwest Area School District Teachers' Union Contract
  49. ^ Fenton, Jacob. Pennsylvania School District Data: Will School Consolidation Save Money?, The Morning Call, Feb 2009.
  50. ^ NORTHWEST AREA SCHOOL DISTRICT LUZERNE COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA PERFORMANCE AUDIT REPORT JULY 2010
  51. ^ Pennsylvania School District Finances Outstanding Debt 1996-97- 2008–09
  52. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Revenue – Personal Income tax information 2010
  53. ^ PA Basic Education Funding-Printout2 2010–2011 Pennsylvania House Appropriations Committee Education Budget information.
  54. ^ Pennsylvania Budget Proposal 2010, Office of the Budget, February 2010.
  55. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education Basic Education Funding Report by School District. October 2009, page 25
  56. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education Basic Education Funding Report by School District. October 2009, page 26
  57. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (March 2010). "Accountability Block Grant report 2010, Grantee list". 
  58. ^ "Accountability Block Grant Mid Year report". 
  59. ^ Pennsylvania Auditor General (December 2008). "Classrooms For the Future grants audit". 
  60. ^ Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. "Pennsylvania school districts ARRA FUNDING report 2009-10". 
  61. ^ Pennsylvania's 'Race to the Top' Fueled by Effective Reforms, Strong Local Support. Governor's Press Release January 20, 2010
  62. ^ U.S. Department of Education, (March 29, 2010). "Race to the Top Fund,". 
  63. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Common Cents program – Making Every Dollar Count". 
  64. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. (2010). "Real Estate Tax Millage by School District,". 
  65. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, (2004). "Act 511 Tax Report,". 
  66. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Pennsylvania School District Finances_Real Estate Tax Rates_0910". 
  67. ^ "Luzerne County Reassessment Information". 
  68. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2009). "Pennsylvania School District Real Estate Tax Rates 2008–09". 
  69. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "2010–11 Act 1 of 2006 Referendum Exception Guidelines". 
  70. ^ "Pennsylvania Department of Education,". May 2010. 
  71. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (April 2010). "Pennsylvania SSAct1_Act1 Exceptions Report 2010-2011". 
  72. ^ Scarcella, Frank and Pursell, Tricia, (May 25, 2010). "Local school tax assessments exceed state averages.". The Daily Item. 
  73. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education Report (May 1, 2010). "Tax Relief per Homestead 2010,". 
  74. ^ Tax Relief per Homestead 5–1–10. Report Pennsylvania Department of Education, May 2010
  75. ^ Tax Foundation, (September 22, 2009). "New Census Data on Property Taxes on Homeowners,". 
  76. ^ Northwest Area School Board Policy Manual Extracurriculars Policy 122 and Interscholastic Athletics Policy 123
  77. ^ Home-Schooled, Charter School Children Can Participate in School District Extracurricular Activities, Pennsylvania Office of the Governor Press Release, November 10, 2005
  78. ^ mcall.com Hershey Class AA Title Game First State Retrieved 2010-05-06
  79. ^ a b pahoops.org Best Team in PA All Time Retrieved 2010-05-06
  80. ^ pahoops.org Coaches Retrieved 2010-05-06
  81. ^ Pennsylvania Public School Code Governance 2010
  82. ^ The Commonwealth Foundation for Public Policy Alternatives. "The Pennsylvania Project". Retrieved May 20, 2010. 
  83. ^ Five Mountain Times Published 2010-05-12 Retrieved 2010-06-05