Norwalk students who are considered “at-risk” are those who require additional support to meet the established goals of the educational program (academic, personal/social, career/vocational). At-risk students include homeless children and youth, dropouts, returning dropouts, and potential dropouts. (Iowa Code 12.2 (256)) The criteria for identification include:
- High rate of absenteeism, truancy, or frequent tardiness.
- Limited or no extracurricular participation or lack of identification with school including expressed feelings of not belonging.
- Poor grades including, but not limited to, failing in one or more school subjects or grade levels.
- Low achievement scores in reading or mathematics which reflects achievement at two years or more below grade level.
Typically, around 5% of the district student enrollment meet at least two or these criteria and qualified as being “at-risk.” Currently, the Norwalk School District is refining its identification criteria, reviewing and expanding the services being offered to our at-risk students, and setting up an ongoing process for evaluating the supports. The goal will be to reduce the number of at-risk students and to better serve those students who are so identified.