3 schools meet AYP af­ter retest

Cle­ments passes AYP for first time since 2001

The Covington News - - Front Page - By Am­ber Pittman

Three New­ton County schools have met Ad­e­quate Yearly Progress (AYP) af­ter scores from sum­mer retests from the Cri­te­rion Ref­er­enced Com­pe­tency Tests (CRCT) came in, ac­cord­ing to in­for­ma­tion re­leased Wed­nes­day by the New­ton County School Sys­tem and the Ge­or­gia Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to Di­rec­tor of Pub­lic Re­la­tions for New­ton County School Sys­tem Sherri Viniard, all three schools – Palmer-Stone Ele­men­tary and Cle­ments and Cousins mid­dle schools – had sub­groups that failed to meet the AYP stan­dards, caus­ing the schools as a whole to fail.

AYP re­flects each in­di­vid­ual school’s per­for­mance in sev­eral dif­fer­ent cri­te­ria, in­clud­ing the per­cent­age of stu­dents tak­ing the test, per­cent­age of stu­dents meet­ing stan­dards in read­ing/lan­guage arts and math­e­mat­ics, and the per­cent of stu­dent ab­sen­tee-

ism in ele­men­tary and mid­dle grades.

Sev­eral sub­groups such as stu­dents with dis­abil­i­ties, eco­nomic sta­tus of fam­i­lies, eth­nic­ity and lim­ited English pro­fi­ciency are also an­a­lyzed, ac­cord­ing to Viniard. A school fail­ing to meet the cri­te­ria in any one of th­ese ar­eas for any sub­group does not meet­ing AYP.

Dur­ing the sum­mer break, stu­dents who had failed the math and/ or lan­guage arts and read­ing por­tion of the test were of­fered sum­mer school and the op­por­tu­nity to re­take the CRCT. Af­ter the retest scores were taken into con­sid­er­a­tion it was found all three schools had passed and met AYP for the 2007- 2008 school year.

Both Palmer- Stone and Cousins met AYP in the 20062007 school year and were not on the needs im­prove­ment list. Cle­ments did not meet AYP in the 06- 07 school year and in spite of meet­ing AYP in 07- 08, the school re­mains on the needs im­prove­ment list be­cause of con­sec­u­tive years of fail­ing AYP. Ac­cord­ing to the Ge­or­gia Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion Cle­ments must of­fer both pub­lic school choice and sup­ple­men­tal ed­u­ca­tion ( tu­tor­ing) ser­vices.

This marks the first year Cle­ments has met AYP since the pro­gram be­gan in 2001, ac­cord­ing to Viniard, mak­ing it very spe­cial for the school.

“ We are all sim­ply ec­static and over­joyed about our scores,” said Dr. Sylvia Jor­dan, prin­ci­pal of Cle­ments Mid­dle School. “ When the an­nounce­ment was made to the teach­ers and the stu­dents, you could hear screams of joy from ev­ery cor­ner of the build­ing. It feels very good to see the hap­pi­ness and the pride of the peo­ple in­side the walls of R. L. Cle­ments Mid­dle School.”

New­ton County School Su­per­in­ten­dent Dr. Steven What­ley was very pleased af­ter hear­ing the news from the state.

“ I know the stu­dents, par­ents, and fac­ulty were pleased to hear the news for th­ese schools. The stu­dents and teach­ers worked very hard dur­ing sum­mer school to im­prove achieve­ment,” What­ley said. “ It is es­pe­cially pleas­ing to have Cle­ments Mid­dle School make AYP af­ter com­ing so close to mak­ing it in pre­vi­ous years.

“ In ad­di­tion to the stu­dents and teach­ers who made this pos­si­ble, I also want to com­mend the cen­tral of­fice ad­min­is­tra­tors who as­sisted the schools’ ef­forts in us­ing test data to tar­get the ar­eas of in­struc­tion where each stu­dent needed ad­di­tional help.”

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