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4 Rockdale schools on high performing list
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Four Rockdale schools were recognized for high performance by being named on the Georgia Department of Education's list of Reward Schools, released today as part of the state’s waiver from the federal No Child Left Behind act.

Pine Street Elementary, Davis Middle, Honey Creek Elementary and Barksdale Elementary were on the Rewards list. The category is reserved for schools with the highest performance or the biggest academic gains by students in the last three years.

“These schools are shining examples of what we can achieve in public education in Georgia,” said State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge. “I want to take what’s working at our Reward Schools and replicate that in every school in the state. These are the schools making education work for all Georgians.”

“I am extremely proud of our Reward Schools that have shown consistent high performance and continuous improvement,” said RCPS Superintendent Richard Autry. “We must recognize the students for their hard work along with the teachers who have made a commitment to excellence and encourage students to reach for their highest academic and personal potential. We appreciate all of the support to teaching and learning by administrators, support staff and parents who are essential team members in a child’s journey through elementary, middle and high school.” 

Pine Street Elementary was named as a High Progress Reward school. A High Progress School is in the top 10 percent of Title I schools in the state that is making the most progress in improving the performance of the “all students” group over three years on the statewide assessments. A school may not be classified as a High Progress School if there are significant achievement gaps across subgroups that are not closing in the school.

Davis Middle School, Honey Creek Elementary, Barksdale Elementary were named Highest Performing Reward Schools. A Highest Performing School is among the 5 percent of Title I schools in Georgia that has the highest absolute performance over three years for the “all students” group on the statewide assessments. A Highest-Performing School must have made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) for the “all students” group and all of its subgroups in 2011. A school may not be classified as a Highest-Performing School if there are significant achievement gaps across subgroups that are not closing in the school.

Other categories under the state’s waiver are: Priority, Focus and Alert schools. Out of the four lists, three apply only to Title I schools, or schools with a lower socioeconomic population. Not all schools will fall on one of the lists.

The Reward Schools list recognizes Title I schools with high performance.

The Priority Schools list has Title I schools with the lowest scores and little overall progress - in other words, the most urgent needs. No RCPS schools were on this list.

The Focus Schools list has Title I schools with either a low overall graduation rate of less than 60 percent or a large gap in the graduation rate of the highest and lowest students. Three RCPS high schools were on the list.

The Alert Schools list is the only list with both Title I and non-Title I schools. It looks at low graduation rates, low achievement rates of a subgroup, or low achievement in certain subjects. No RCPS schools were on this list.

The College and Career Readiness Index that the Ga. Department of Education introduced as an accountability alternative to No Child Left Behind is made up of 20 factors to measure a school's and system's performance. As part of that, the Ga. DOE has drawn up four lists to find the schools that need more support.