Award Year: 2017

J. Russell Elementary School

119 N. Adams Street
Moscow, ID, 83843-2830

(208) 882-2715

Mr. Craig M. Allen, Principal at time of Nomination

Title I School

Moscow School District (281)

School Website


Russell is a team of students, teachers, and parents working together to build an excellent place to learn through respect, responsibility, cooperation, and achievement.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 5%
  • White: 79%
  • Hispanic: 3%
  • Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 1%
  • Asian: 9%
  • Native American: 2%
  • Two or more races: 1%
  • ELL: 10%
  • Economically Disadvantaged: 46%
Amor Vincit Omnia

Amor Vincit Omnia

J. Russell Elementary stands proudly in the heart of Moscow, Idaho, a town that uniquely blends the traditional wheat farming culture of the Palouse with the progressive influences of a state university. The bricks from our ninety year old building, while weathered from time, hold more memories and hide more stories of the growth of our community than any archive can hold. From the outside, Russell is the picture of convention and tradition.

Within the walls of Russell School, however, that atmosphere changes as the traditional school setting meets instructional acuity and innovation. In 2015, the staff at Russell took hold of an opportunity to restructure how we supported student learning. As we moved to a School-Wide Title I system, we created structures to support our full spectrum of learners. While providing instruction of grade level standards in initial mathematics and literacy classes, every student is also placed into much smaller math and reading "clubs". These clubs heavily target learning objectives identified through frequent formative assessments. Instruction within groups focuses on either re-teaching learning goals in need of support, increasing students' depth of knowledge, or enriching student learning with activities that extend outside of their familiar contexts. To further ensure success, teachers meet to evaluate each student's progress toward learning objectives every few weeks and reshuffle placement in clubs. Thanks to the hard work, expertise, and dedication of the staff at Russell Elementary School, the impact of our new support systems on student learning and efficacy has been extraordinary.