August 2, 2012
Contact: Bonnie Reidy
Chief Communications Officer
704-867-1711, Evenings and Weekends
Gastonia, N.C. – According to the ABCs of Public Education accountability program results released today by the State Board of Education 40 of 53 GCS schools made high or expected growth under more challenging standards. In 2011-2012, nearly every school either improved proficiency or averaged a year’s academic progress.
This is the 16th and final year of the ABCs of Public Education accountability program before the state transitions to the READY school accountability model in the 2012-13 school year.
The district increased the percent of Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs) achieved under the accountability program and the number of schools achieving AMO target goals also went up. AMOs replaced the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) measures previously required by the U.S. Department of Education. Under AMOs, proficiency targets are set for each student subgroup.
According to the state report, the new accountability model (that replaces the ABCs beginning this school year) is a better measure of career and college readiness.
Under the ABCs, Robinson and Highland made growth and both were named Honor Schools of Excellence. Only 11.2 percent of the schools in the state attained this high standing. The Bessemer City Early College achieved the School of Excellence status for the second consecutive year.
Fourteen schools earned the School of Distinction honor and 21 achieved School of Progress status. Three were named Priory Schools and no schools were designated Low Performing.
Superintendent L. Reeves McGlohon said, “I am pleased that our schools continue to improve even in the wake of less funding and resources. I commend our school staffs for their commitment – we have dedicated teachers, principals and parents who work extremely hard to ensure academic progress. But as I’ve said before, you simply can’t continue improving with less people to do the job and fewer resources for the classroom. When you look at our lack of funding, you must realize that at some point, inevitably, we will lose ground and that is why I am extremely concerned – eventually, it will significantly impact the success of our students.”
According to the state report, the new accountability model, which will replace the ABCs beginning with the 2012-2013 school year more accurately measure career and college readiness.
The ABCs of Public Education is a comprehensive plan initiated in 1996-97 by the state to improve public schools. Results for grades 3-8 were first reported following the 1996-97 school year. In 1997-98, the high schools were added to the program.
The ABCs report is based on several measures of performance. These include reading and mathematics end-of-grade tests in grades three through eight and science end-of-grade tests in grades five and eight. In grades K-2, special age-appropriate assessments are used to chart a students’ academic progress and are not included in the ABCs reports.
In high school, the ABCs report is based on student performance in three mandated end-of-course tests: Algebra I, English I and Biology, a comparison of percentages of students completing College/University Prep or College Tech Prep courses of study and the cohort graduation rate (replace dropout rate). For complete details of how these measures are included in the ABCs, go to www.ncpublicschools.org.
School results on the ABCs are reported as the following: Honor Schools of Excellence, Schools of Excellence, Schools of Distinction, Schools of Progress, No Recognition, Priority Schools, Low Performing Schools and schools with High Growth and Expected Growth.
Highlights of the 2012 ABCs:
- Growth: 40 of 53 schools made expected growth – 19 of those also made high growth.
- Robinson and Highland were named Honor Schools of Excellence. Bessemer City Early College High School achieved the School of Excellence status. Honor Schools of Excellence must have 90 percent or above proficient, achieve expected growth or above and make all target goals under Annual Measurable Objectives.
- Fourteen schools were named Schools of Distinction. They are: Belmont Central, W. A. Bess, Cherryville Elementary, Costner, Hawks Nest, Page, Belmont Middle, Cramerton, Mt. Holly, Stanley, East Gaston, Forestview, North Gaston and South Point.
- Greatest gains grades 3-8: The schools with the greatest gains at the elementary school level were: Woodhill +15.5; Lingerfeldt + 10.8; Robinson + 9.1; Pleasant Ridge +8.1; and Cherryville +7.3. Middle schools with greatest gains: Belmont Middle +3 and Stanley +3.
- At the high school level, Bessemer City +7.3 and Cherryville +6 saw the highest increases.
- Highest proficiency: At the elementary level, Robinson, Belmont Central/Page, W.A. Bess, New Hope and Cherryville reported the highest proficiency. In middle school, Belmont Middle, Cramerton, Mt. Holly and Stanley had the highest. Bessemer City Early College, Cherryville and Highland boast the top proficiency in the high school.
Attached are charts showing a school-by-school summary of the 2011-2012 ABCs results and a school-by-school chart with AMOs met.