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Archive for Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Measuring success

Most Lawrence schools show progress on testing

December 12, 2006

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Like a farmer bringing in a big harvest, Terry McEwen had a bushel of good news Monday night about the results of statewide tests.

McEwen, director of assessment for the Lawrence school district, gave the school board some highlights, which he said were "exciting":

¢ All but one Lawrence school - Southwest Junior High - met the state's annual yearly progress goals in reading, math or both subjects for the 2005-06 school year.

¢ Eighteen schools brought in coveted Standard of Excellence ratings, with two schools - Broken Arrow and Deerfield - reaping as many as four such ratings for reading and three for math.

¢ For the first time, Lawrence and Free State high schools plucked the high ratings - Free State for reading and LHS for math.

¢ Also for the first time, two local junior highs - Southwest and South - received Standard of Excellence honors in reading.

"To have two of our junior high schools and both of our two high schools fall into the categories of Standards of Excellence is very exciting," McEwen said.

McEwen gave school board members a quick rundown of what they can expect to see today when the Kansas State Board of Education formally unveils its Annual Yearly Progress reports for all state schools.

The figures, which were being refigured until 6 p.m. Monday, are expected to be released to the public at noon today during the state board's meeting in Topeka.

"It's great news," said Sue Morgan, board president.

Morgan said the figures show seeds planted to improve test scores at the lower levels have borne fruit at the junior high and high school levels.

"To some extent, we're seeing the progress we're making in the elementary initiatives that we put in place now reaching the junior high and high school level," she said. "And that's exciting."

She said the results also show the efforts of the "whatever it takes" initiatives working at the high school level.

"We've got a long way to go, but this was great news," she said.

To receive a Standard of Excellence honor, an elementary school must have at least 25 percent of its students score in the "exemplary" category on the state assessment; no more than 5 percent of its students can be on academic warning.

Terry McEwen, director of assessment for Lawrence's public schools, talks about Standards of Excellence.

None

In middle schools, at least 20 percent of students must score exemplary on the assessment and no more than 10 percent of students can be on academic warning. High schools must have 15 percent of students score exemplary, with no more than 10 percent of students on academic warning.

McEwen said the one school that didn't make Annual Yearly Progress, Southwest Junior High, was brought down by the scores in reading and math from one subgroup: students with disabilities.

However, Southwest's seventh- and eighth-graders did, as grade levels, receive the Standard of Excellence rating for reading, he said.

South Junior High did notmake AYP in reading, also because of the students with disabilities subgroup.

The following are the Standards of Excellence ratings on state assessments by school and grade level:

¢ Broken Arrow, seven awards: Reading - third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade, sixth grade; Math - third grade, fourth grade and fifth grade.

¢ Cordley, six awards: Reading - third, fourth, fifth and sixth; Math - third and fourth.

¢ Deerfield, seven awards: Reading - third, fourth, fifth and sixth; Math - third, fourth, fifth.

¢ Hillcrest, three awards: Math - fourth, fifth, sixth.

¢ Kennedy, one award: Math - third.

¢ Langston Hughes, six awards: Reading - third, fourth, fifth and sixth; Math - third and fourth.

¢ Lawrence Virtual School, two awards: Reading - sixth and seventh.

¢ New York, five awards: Reading - third and fifth; Math - third, fourth and sixth.

¢ Pinckney, one award: Math - third.

¢ Prairie Park, two awards: Reading - third; Math - third.

¢ Quail Run, five awards: Reading - third, fourth and fifth; Math - third and fourth.

¢ Schwegler, three awards: Reading - fifth; Math - third and fourth.

¢ Sunflower, three awards: Reading - third and fifth; Math - third.

¢ Sunset Hill, three awards: Reading - third and sixth; Math - third.

¢ Wakarusa Valley, five awards: Reading - third, fourth and fifth; Math - third and fourth.

¢ South Junior High, two awards: Reading - seventh and eighth.

¢ Southwest Junior High, two awards: Reading - seventh and eighth.

¢ Free State, one award: Reading - 11th.

¢ LHS, one award: Math - 10th.

Comments

budwhysir 8 years ago

No child left behind, funny no mention of how much all day kindergarten costs

LongGoneFromLarryville 8 years ago

A million dollars! $1,000,000!

We know, you keep telling us. What do you think that's for, exactly? Maybe it's directly equated to teachers' time? To double the amount of education your 5-year-old sponge is exposed to that year?

Tell me what you think is spent overall on instruction any year? Do you know that number? Come on, I'm sure you do. You're totally up on the issue, right?

It's $68M. About $20M more to pay for operations and administration. Total budget well over $100M.

Apparently, spending another 1% of that on a program that is proven to have downstream benefits (aka: better test scores, more successful students) somehow doesn't make sense to you.

If I were still a Lawrencian, I'd happily pony up the money in the hope that the parents of tomorrow would be a bit more farsighted.

budwhysir 8 years ago

I see a larger focus on construction rather than instruction.

My research is complete.

Hawkman 8 years ago

budwhysir....the only "data" you collect is what you pull out of your @ss!

budwhysir 8 years ago

Hawk, please use caution. I deal in research not data. I do not collect I compile. Seems as though I have touched a nerve with some. Maybe I am out of line here. I will stop and think for a while

budwhysir 8 years ago

Long you are aware that I am for all day kindergarten, right?????

budwhysir 8 years ago

After thinking, I will keep my thoughts to myself

budwhysir 8 years ago

From now on, knowledge only no thoughts

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