State re­leases school-level EOCT scores

The Covington News - - FRONT PAGE - KAYLA ROBINS krobins@cov­

The Ge­or­gia De­part­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion re­leased the 2014 school-level scores for End-of-Course Tests (EOCT), show­ing where each of the three high schools in New­ton County im­proved, de­clined, passed the state or fell below Ge­or­gia av­er­age pass rates.

“I am de­lighted to see that our high schools have con­tin­ued the trend of in­creas­ing stu­dent achieve­ment,” New­ton County School Sys­tem (NCSS) Su­per­in­ten­dent Sa­man­tha Fuhrey said in a press re­lease. “I am proud of our high school stu­dents, teach­ers, staff and lead­ers for their tar­geted work. Not only have we out­per­formed the state in six of eight ar­eas, we have seen im­prove­ment in al­most ev­ery sub­ject area at each of our high schools.”

How did our district stack up against the state?

When look­ing at the district as a whole, ev­ery sub­ject that has com­pa­ra­ble data im­proved from last year. This means that more high school stu­dents in New­ton County met or ex­ceeded the stan­dard on EOCTs in 2014 than they did in 2013. Phys­i­cal science kept the same pass rate (88), and there is no 2013 data for an­a­lytic ge­om­e­try and Amer­i­can lit­er­a­ture.

Over­all, the best score in the district was on the Amer­i­can lit­er­a­ture EOCT (94), while the low­est score was in co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra (29).

Although math scores con­tinue to be the weak­est sub­ject for stu­dents in the county and through­out the state, the district passed 10 per­cent more stu­dents on

“Our stu­dents’ per­for­mance in U.S. his­tory places our high schools in the top 16 ” per­cent of the state —Sa­man­tha Fuhrey, NCSS Su­per­in­ten­dent

the co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra EOCT than it did last year (19), mark­ing the largest rate of im­prove­ment in the county. The small­est im­prove­ment came from the phys­i­cal science EOCT that stayed the same from 2013 to 2014.

District scores passed the state pass

rate in ev­ery sub­ject ex­cept the two math EOCTs (co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra and an­a­lytic ge­om­e­try). The largest gap be­tween New­ton County and states scores was the eco­nom­ics EOCT (90), which beat Ge­or­gia’s pass rate by 9 per­cent­age points. The small­est gap was a one per­cent dif­fer­ence in bi­ol­ogy (76) and Amer­i­can lit­er­a­ture.

The largest gap on the other end of the spec­trum fell in co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra, fall­ing 11 per­cent­age points below the state score (40), while the district’s an­a­lytic ge­om­e­try EOCT fell 5 per­cent­age points below the state pass rate.

What about each school?

All three high schools showed im­prove­ments from 2013 to 2014, with East­side High School top­ping the list by mark­ing higher scores this year in ev­ery sub­ject with com­pa­ra­ble data (6) from 2013. Next came New­ton High School (5), im­prov­ing in ev­ery sub­ject ex­cept U.S. his­tory and non-com­pa­ra­ble sub­jects, fol­lowed by Al­covy High School, which had bet­ter scores in four ar­eas, not in­clud­ing non-com­pa­ra­ble sub­jects, eco­nom­ics and phys­i­cal science.

East­side’s co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra EOCT showed the largest rate of im­prove­ment, mov­ing from 29 to 42 per­cent of stu­dent meet­ing or ex­ceed­ing the stan­dard (13 per­cent­age points). The big­gest de­cline in scores from last year to this year was on Al­covy’s eco­nom­ics EOCT (88), which de­clined by three per­cent­age points.

East­side’s Amer­i­can lit­er­a­ture EOCT passed 96 per­cent of stu­dents, mark­ing the high­est score on any sub­ject at all three schools in 2014. New­ton marked the low­est score (21) on its co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra EOCT.

“Our stu­dents’ per­for­mance in U.S. his­tory places our high schools in the top 16 per­cent of the state,” Fuhrey said. “Our stu­dents’ per­for­mance in eco­nom­ics moves us to the top 18 per­cent of all sys­tems in the state. Our stu­dents’ per­for­mance in 9th grade lit­er­a­ture places us among the top 32 per­cent of all school sys­tems in Ge­or­gia, and our stu­dents’ per­for­mance in Amer­i­can lit­er­a­ture places us among the top 29 per­cent of sys­tems in the state.

“Fi­nally, while the state’s co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra pass rate is 40 per­cent, as a whole, the state im­proved three points from 2013 to 2014. In the New­ton County School Sys­tem, our stu­dents im­proved their per­for­mance by as many as (13) points, with East­side out­per­form­ing the state. Our rate of im­prove­ment in co­or­di­nate al­ge­bra re­flects our con­tin­ued fo­cus in math­e­mat­ics. It’s im­por­tant to note that im­prov­ing three points is seen as ‘sta­tis­ti­cally sig­nif­i­cant,’ so the fact that our schools im­proved two to four times that rate speaks vol­umes about our com­mit­ment to con­tin­u­ous im­prove­ment.

“It’s im­por­tant to note that we are not sat­is­fied with our re­sults; our fo­cused work will con­tinue to pay div­i­dends as we pre­pare our stu­dents not only for Ge­or­gia’s new Mile­stones As­sess­ment Sys­tem but to have choices be­yond high school.”

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