Polk Elementary School opened in the fall of 1976.  The school was established to serve the families of the recently reactivated army post of Fort Polk.  The school was housed in several existing buildings such as barracks, company headquarters, and a simulation center that the army provided.  Lunch was served across the street from the school in an army mess hall.  When it rained, the assistant principal would drive a bus to transport the students to lunch.

As the enrollment grew, the school was divided into two campuses. In 1980, South Polk Elementary moved into its newly constructed building and housed second through fourth grades.

In the fall of 1995, North Polk Elementary opened the doors of its new building at 4978 University Parkway.  The new building seemed as if we had moved from a “cottage” to a “castle”.

We currently have an enrollment of about 350 three to six year olds, 99% of which are military dependents. We have three Head Start classes, five LA-4 classes, and ten Kindergarten classes.

We strive to provide an atmosphere where all students can learn and grow.  Besides ensuring the highest levels of teaching professionalism, we incorporate the following academic enrichments:

  • Reteaching in the classroom – all grade levels – done as needed through alternative activities and methods of instruction
  • Small group differentiated instruction – all grade levels – incorporated into daily instruction – Tier 1
  • Learning Stations – all grade levels – incorporated daily
  • Response to Intervention (RTI) – Kindergarten  – those students scoring below benchmark on the DIBELS – done in 30-minute or 45-minute intervals depending on the need of the child – Tiers 2 and 3
  • Technology  -  Promethean ActivBoards; document cameras, and individual computers in the classrooms; whole class access to the computer lab once a week where they may access programs that allow them to work at their own pace on Math and Reading skills – teachers also have access to these programs in their classrooms, so students can work on them as a Learning Station
  • Skill Recovery and In-School Tutoring in ELA and Math – Kindergarten  – identified Kindergarten students receive at least 20 minutes each day with a tutor who works on skills that were not mastered on the ELA and Math Unit Tests – this is done during the school day
  • In-School tutoring – Kindergarten and First Grade – identified students receive 20 minutes a day
  • Special Education Classes and Services – all grade levels – identified students receive specialized instruction and guidance to address academic, speech/language, adaptive PE, physical or occupational therapy needs in the least restrictive environment.
  • Summer Tutoring – Kindergarten – 30 hours of instruction for students that passed the grade but still need remediation or for students that need enrichment.

One of the biggest challenges we face is the constant flow of students in and out of our doors as their parents are assigned to and transferred from our post. Another challenge for our small students is the deployment of one or both of their parents. Due to the distance that separate military dependents from their support systems at home, we become their extended family. Though we have been through some adventures, North Polk Elementary continues to strive to find new and effective ways to provide the best educational and enriching experiences for our students.