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Posted: April 24, 2014 10:00 p.m.

Presenting the numbers

In Wednesday’s paper we brought out front and center the school system’s scores from the last two years, with a combined average.

Our own math grade should be a C, because we used a — well average — equation to figure it out. Looking deeper into a book on statistical analysis (that we had to borrow from someone else) it appears that a weighted average would have been the best equation.

Fortunately for our young people, school officials quickly brought the equation miscalculation to our attention. A weighted average would have taken the different individual standards that went into making up the average scores, providing an even clearer picture of the school system’s scores.

So, without breaking out the slide rules, looking into fractals and algorithms and chasing down all the factors that went into the number, we figured we would go plain and simple. In today’s paper you will see the raw numbers, which were posted on Tuesday, to show you exactly what the state projected for 2012 and 2013 in the Newton County School System.

Please look further into this chart to see what schools are improving, and which need even more of a boost in Newton County.

However, no matter how you present the numbers, the Newton County Theme School at Ficquett rose above the rest — in the entire state. It tested out as the top middle school in all of Georgia. That is something for all of us to be proud of and should be used as an example for ever other school in the district.

The thing that separates the theme school from other schools, is not only the brightest and most successful students, but the fact of its theme — parental involvement. If all schools had the same attention paid to its students from their parents, we would see continued improvement in all of them.

We salute the students, teachers and parents of the theme school; your honors bring a special pride of accomplishment to our community.

Finally we want to say this there has been some improvement in some schools from 2012-2013 — for that we are pleased — some stayed the same, a few went backward--Samantha Fuhrey, Superintendent of Schools said that our district was on average with the state scores. For another community that might be good news, but for ours it is not.
We are about to experience an explosion of new business in our community that will come to support what Baxter International has started. Those who will come to work and support those businesses will have an expectation that Newton County will have a school system that scores higher than the state’s average success rate. That should be our goal.

We extol our local school administration and teachers to make every effort to see that we reach that goal sooner than later. We need to surpass state averages not keep pace.

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