Butterfield Elementary inching toward an ‘A’


Butterfield Elementary School is only five points away from being an ‘A’ school.

The school was in the spotlight Wednesday during a relatively brief meeting of the Maricopa Unified School District Governing Board.

Principal Janel Hildick and members of her staff provided an update on the school’s progress while also giving props to some award winners at her campus.

Hildick said her teachers are doing everything they are supposed to be doing to become an ‘A’ school. “We just want to get there,” she said.

The students have taken a Galileo pre-test to be measured against a post-test in May. The goal is for all students in all grades to meet expected growth. In math, kindergarten classes were already at 88 percent in meeting goals, and the fifth grade was at 78. At the lower end, third grade was at 23, and second grade at 38.

In reading, kindergarten was at 80, just ahead of the fifth grade at 75. The third grade’s 43 percent was the lowest among the grades.

Noting the trailing progress of the third grade in math and reading goals, board member Gary Miller asked what the school needed to improve that result.

“We had a lot of issues testing with technology,” Hildrick said. “Not to make excuses, but we did have to reschedule our classes, and the teachers pretty much shared all the trauma they had testing.

“So if I had a magic wand all of our technology would work perfectly, and we wouldn’t have any issues with the testing. I think that really caused a major difference on the test scores.”

Butterfield’s student population is 775. Of the 34 certified teachers, 61 percent have master’s degrees.

“We practice our school vision every day at Butterfield – a community dedicated to inspiring life-long learners with positive character traits,” teacher Steve Sorenson said.

***ADVERTISEMENT***Recently, Susana Buhisan, who teaches first grade at Butterfield, was named Educator the Year by the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce.

Superintendent Steve Chestnut recognized the food service staff of Darla Rider, Lucy Lopez and Martha Rowe as the Support Staff Members of the Year.

And Butterfield's Kathleen Kelley was named the VFW Citizenship Teacher of the Year.