Our School

The mission of Loring Community School is to educate children for lifelong learning in a respectful environment that supports their growth into knowledgeable, skilled, responsible and confident citizens capable of succeeding in their professional and personal life. We are a respectful, caring school where children, families, staff and community work together so all children reach their highest potential. Loring Community School is highly committed to academic achievement. We believe, and research shows, that students learn best in an environment where social skills are taught. We take great pride in being a "Responsive Classroom School" where we teach children to care about themselves, others and learning. Social skills and academics taught together result in more learning time for students. We've also introduced the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program this year at Loring. This program is recognized by the government as one of the blueprints for violence prevention programs in the country. Loring Community School has been the recipient of three federal reading grants. These grants were used for intensive teacher training in research-based methods of instruction. This level of achievement is directly related to the professionalism of Loring teachers and their commitment to excellence. Our teachers have high expectations for student learning and design lessons at each child's individual skill level.

The Loring academic program places a high demand on students for thinking as they are presented a rigorous curriculum. Students are expected to raise questions, solve problems and reason. Each student receives 120 minutes a day of reading instruction and 90 minutes of math. In reading classes, students have both whole group instruction with grade level material as well as 50 minutes a day of small group instruction at their instructional level. We are privileged to have an extensive collection of instructional reading materials and supplemental texts, which are challenging and interesting. Each student's achievement and efforts are continuously evaluated and adjustments are made in curriculum and instruction as needed.

 

Students at Loring receive a well-balanced program of academics, technology, physical education, vocal music and band. Students with special talents and interests participate in advanced math and reading classes. 

 

Students at Loring look forward to popular activities and experiences beyond our core curriculum. This includes the Math Masters Team, an opportunity for students eager for additional math challenges and competition with other Minneapolis Schools. Kindergarten students and their families enjoy a fall Literacy Night. Students read books such as Stone Soup, make stone soup and invite their families for dinner. Third grade expands their social studies unit on communities by visiting many important historical sites in Minneapolis. The Arts for Academic Achievement brings theater into the classroom. Grade 4 students study electricity in science class and through our affiliation with the Bakken Museum to expand their knowledge and complete additional hands on experiments. Grade 5 students look forward to going to Camp Audubon to study the environment and participate in team building exercises and develop personal confidence before going to middle school.

 

Loring Community School enthusiastically implements the MPS Wellness Policy. Students learn about nutrition and how to make healthy food choices through growing their own food and cooking. The Loring Schoolyard Garden is an award-winning learning laboratory for all students. The garden is a true community effort - organized by and supported by families, neighbors and friends for the benefit of the children. Loring School was awarded a Medica-funded grant to teach cross-country skiing and nutrition to students in grades 3, 4 and 5. Loring is in partnership with City of the Lakes Loppet, Nordic Ski Foundation and Kids Cook. We received national recognition through The Alliance for a Healthy Generation founded by the American Heart Association and William J. Clinton Foundation. The goal of the Alliance is to reduce the prevalence of childhood obesity by 2015, and to empower kids nationwide to make healthy lifestyle choices.

 

The Loring Community Council is an active group of parents, community members and teachers who work together to support children's education. The Council serves as an advisory board to the school ensuring that Loring Community School reflects the values, vision and expectations of the community. The Council also provides the school community with an annual carnival, Bingo for Books and Family Fun Nights. Other partnerships with the community include support from volunteers, Cargill Financial Services, the Victory Neighborhood Association, Salem Lutheran Church, Faith Baptist Church, the Minnesota Orchestra, Target Stores in Plymouth and Crystal, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Arts for Academic Achievement, Medica, City of Lakes Loppet and Nordic Ski Foundation.

From the Heart 

"I wonder, ‘Why would anyone choose a private school?’  Loring is a small public school with a very positive learning environment.  As I walk through the halls, all the staff knows my children’s names and greets them in an affirming manner.  Guess what?  They do the same with me!  Loring approaches each student individually and works as a team to provide appropriate challenges and opportunities to ensure academic success and creative learning.  Loring is truly a community school where everyone counts.”
S.Q., Loring Parent

“I want to thank you for making my son a reader.  Reading has always been something he wanted to avoid.  Now he is reading on his own for pleasure.  Thank you.”
P.C., Loring Parent

“Loring Community School is my choice for my gifted son because they are able to adequately challenge him and keep him excited about school.  The curriculum is challenging and exciting and the staff is highly trained and enthusiastic about teaching.”
K.S., Loring Parent

 

Special Highlights

  • Community school located in the Victory Neighborhood
  • Quality instruction and a rigorous academic experience for all students
  • One of two Minneapolis Schools to receive former Senator Mark Dayton's "Award for Excellence in Education"
  • High Five program
  • Responsive Classroom school where students learn social/cooperative skills and academic skills together
  • Small, safe neighborhood school with a family atmosphere
  • Olweus Bullying Prevention Program
  • Strong partnerships with families and community members
  • St. Paul Chamber Orchestra CONNECT program in school
  • Wellness and a healthy lifestyle integrated into school experiences
What We Look Like

 

Student Race

School

District

Native American

5%

5%

African American

43%

33%

Asian American

13%

7%

Hispanic American

10%

20%

White American

31%

34%

From School Year 2011-2012

 

Students

School

District

Receive ELL Services

18%

24%

Qualify for free or reduced lunch*

67%

66%

Receive Special Education Services

12%

15%

From School Year 2011-2012

 

Teacher Ethnicity

School

District

Native American

0%

1%

African American

4%

7%

Asian American

4%

3%

Hispanic American

4%

3%

White American

89%

87%

All staff information is preliminary 2011-2012 data.
Staff Ethnicity percentages are based on all teaching staff assigned to a building including teachers that are part time and assigned to multiple buildings.

 

 

Progress Toward Our Goals
Loring School is steeped in a tradition of academic excellence. We have high expectations for our students and ourselves. The Loring staff has created and nurtured a school environment where staff is constantly examining their instruction, consulting with experts, studying research and focusing on effective teaching strategies in the classroom. Loring frequently hosts visitors from other districts who are interested in our model of professional development, instruction and resultant academic achievement in an urban setting. Until recently we have historically made annual yearly progress (AYP) goals in reading and math as measured by the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments given to Grades 3,4 and 5 students. However on 2011 MCAs, we missed the mark in reading for Spanish-speaking students and English Language Learners, and students who qualify for special education services did not meet AYP targets for mathematics. These students, however, are learning, but not at the pace No Child Left Behind requires. For children whose first language is not English, it is more important to measure their progress toward the goal rather than expecting proficiency on a test in a language in which they are not fluent. Although there was growth in ‘ALL’ subgroups, it was not enough to make the benchmark. The good news is that we are a school that ‘Beats the Odds’. That means that when all factors are taken into account our students show more growth (accelerated growth) than our demographics would predict. This is how we judge ourselves, and the way schools expect to be evaluated in the future.

 

Loring School believes that students who are given engaging opportunities to learn are more motivated to learn. The KIDS COOK Schoolyard Garden invites students to explore science, mathematics, cultures, nutrition and health through lessons taught in the garden. Science is more interesting when the monarch caterpillars are fed with milkweed from the garden. Mathematics is more interesting when you are learning estimation by estimating the number of bees on the honeycomb during a lesson about social insects, in the garden. Students can be seen exploring the senses of listening, smelling, tasting, etc., as they work in the garden. This leads them into writing assignments drawing from the observations and sensory awareness experience in the garden. We want our children to experience learning in real-life settings.

 

High Five is our half-day early childhood program for four-year olds. We offer both a morning and an afternoon session. They learn academic readiness skills as well as social skills and school routines. They are a lively and fun group of learners. We love having them at Loring.

 

Students benefit from strong family support of education at Loring. Families at Loring are actively involved in their children's education. Ninety-five percent of our families participate in school conferences. We have a strong parent teacher organization (LCC) that supports the school community. Families are always welcome in our school. Our staff survey showed that 95 percent of our teachers know their students personally - and their families. This is a school where we all care about each other.

 

Loring is grateful for the support of neighbors in the community who enrich the experiences of our students. Many of the volunteers who support the school do not have students at Loring. They are committed to the neighborhood and the children of the community. In addition to devoting personal time and finances to the school, they have broadened our family of supporters through some of the annual activities including: KIDS COOK summer family picnics and pie auction; summer gardening day camp; schoolyard and butterfly gardens (winners of a State of Minnesota Horticulture Association award and Minneapolis Blooms); and participation in Holiday on 44th Street. Loring also has a dedicated group of senior citizens who either attended Loring themselves or had children who attended Loring. Five Loring School volunteers have been honored as Volunteers of the Year by Minneapolis Public Schools.

 

At Loring, the phrase "It takes a village to raise a child" is played out daily.

Teacher Quality

At Loring School we believe that the quality of instruction strongly impacts academic success. Our staff has made a commitment to continuous professional development. We are lifelong learners, always striving to improve our teaching.

• Loring teachers are ‘Committed to Excellence’ and in January 2006 received an Award of Excellence in Education.

• We believe all students can learn and challenge them accordingly.

• We worked closely with the University of Minnesota through the Reading Excellence, Reading First grants and the University of Pittsburgh’s Institute for Learning to provide professional development for teachers over a six-year period. Currently we are in our first year of implementing the new Standards of Effective Instruction rubric for best practice teaching.

• Evaluation by the University of Minnesota indicates Loring teachers have developed a strong reading program and teachers who are committed to ongoing professional development.

• All teachers meet weekly in professional conversations (study groups) to review current research and instructional practices.

• Loring School's data-driven program determines instruction based on student assessments. We are proud to be a Response to Intervention demonstration school where each student's instructional program can be fine-tuned with confidence. Loring teachers are skilled in using this research-based approach to instructional decision-making.

• Loring has a math support teacher who teams with teachers to teach math most effectively.

Loring has a content-focused literacy coach who collaborates with teachers to help them teach reading and writing most effectively.

• Teachers at Loring choose to work here because they love teaching the children of our community!

Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment - Series II (MCA-II)

The Minnesota Department of Education uses the MCA-IIs to track students' educational progress towards the academic goals as outlined by the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act. The first table shows you whether specific student group at our school met the 2011 Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) goals in participation and proficiency, while the second table gives the overall percentage of our students who met the proficiency standards on MCA-II reading and math assessments for the tested grades at this school.

 

Adequately Yearly Progress for Spring 2011

 

Reading

Mathematics

 

Participation

Proficiency

Participation

Proficiency

All Students

Y

Y

Y

Y

Native American

 

 

 

 

African American

Y

Y

Y

Y

Asian American


Y


Y

Hispanic American

 

N

 

Y

White American

Y

Y

Y

Y

Limited English Proficient

 

N

 

Y

Special Education

 

Y

 

N

Free/Reduced Price Lunch

Y

Y

Y

Y

 

Percentage of Students Who are Proficient for 2010-2011

 

Our School

District

State

Grade 3 Reading

63%

58%

79%

Grade 3 Math

46%

49%

70%

Grade 4 Reading

66%

56%

75%

Grade 4 Math

49%

42%

67%

Grade 5 Reading

65%

61%

80%

Grade 5 Math

38%

32%

54%

Grade 6 Reading

 

52%

75%

Grade 6 Math

 

29%

50%

Grade 7 Readi52

 

54%

70%

Grade 7 Math

 

32%

64%

Grade 8 Reading

 

54%

68%

Grade 8 Math

 

35%

53%

 

 

Staff Survey: School Environment -- Safety & Respect

Responses from Staff
Agree or strongly Agree

 

Our School

  District

I feel safe in my school building

100%

94%

I am often kept from teaching because of student misbehavior.

13%

34%

In my school, adults and students respect one another.

97%

90%

Staff in my school show respect for staff of all races and ethnic backgrounds.

100%

95%

District staff survey averages are district wide averages. From School Year 2010-2011