Rockdale County Public Schools made Adequate Yearly Progress for the fifth consecutive year and each individual school made AYP, according to preliminary AYP results released today.“This is an amazing accomplishment,” says Superintendent Dr. Sam King. “Our students are demonstrating that they are prepared to go to the next level and beyond. Our focus on increased rigor throughout all grades is having a positive impact on student achievement as the bar continues to rise in all academic areas. Our teachers, administrators and support staff are relentless in their efforts to provide each student with the necessary knowledge and skill to reach his/her highest academic potential and follow his/her dreams. Parents must also be commended for their involvement in their child’s education. Research clearly indicates as parent involvement increases, so does student performance and achievement. I congratulate all of the RCPS students, teachers, administrators, support staff and parents for this milestone accomplishment. I look forward to another great year with a continued focus on teaching and learning to enable every student to be a successful, participatory member of our global society.”
Statewide, 71 percent of schools made AYP this year — a drop of 8 percentage points from last year’s 79 percent, according to the state Department of Education.
"This drop is due in large part to the increase in the academic bar in mathematics that students in elementary and middle school had to meet in order for a school to make AYP," Matt Cardoza, director of communications, wrote in the report released this afternoon. "The graduation rate that high schools must meet also increased this year to 80 percent."Thirty-five schools across the state shook the Needs Improvement label by having made AYP for two consecutive years.
AYP is the formula used to determine if schools are meeting expectations under the federal No Child Left Behind Act. It consists of three parts -- test participation, academic achievement and another statistic, called a "second indicator." The academic goals continue to rise every few years toward a goal of 100% proficiency for all students by 2014. This year, the academic goal for grades 3-8 increased in mathematics and the graduation rate bar went up.
All students at a school, as well as any qualifying subgroup of students, must meet goals in all three categories in order to make AYP. Schools that do not make AYP for two consecutive years in the same subject are placed in Needs Improvement status and face escalating consequences.
The state's initial 2010 graduation rate, which doesn't include summer graduates and retests, is 79.9%. That is up from the initial 2009 graduation rate of 77.8% and the final 2009 graduation rate of 78.9%, which included summer graduates.
Graduation rate must be used as a "second indicator" for all high schools and the bar was raised this year.
In order to make AYP, a high school had to have a graduation rate of 80% or higher, up from 75% last year. If a school did not make that goal, they could use a "second look" which means:
- Having a graduation rate that averaged 80% or higher over the past three years OR
- Having a graduation rate of at least 60% the previous year (2009) and showing a 10% improvement in the rate this year.
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