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9/5/19 State Board of Education Releases 2018-19 Accountability Results

State Board of Education Releases 2018-19 Accountability Results
ABSS Graduation Rate Rises to Highest Level in District History

The North Carolina Board of Education approved results today from the 2018-19 school year for all traditional and public charter schools based on the North Carolina’s Accountability Model in compliance with state and federal reporting requirements.  The Accountability Model provides results for student performance on End-of-Grade (EOG) and End-of-Course (EOC) tests along with English Learner Progress and on three additional measures at the high school level: combined ACT test results and WorkKeys test results; Graduation Rate; and Math Course Rigor.

ABSS achieved a combined grade level proficient score (Levels 3, 4 & 5) of 51.4% for all EOG and EOC test results for students in grades 3-12, up from 50.7% in the prior year. The career and college ready score (Levels 4 & 5) was attained on a cumulative 37.8% of EOG and EOC tests administered across the district.  In 2018-19, 47.0% of all ABSS juniors scored at or above the University of North Carolina system entry requirement composite ACT score of 17. Among Career & Technical Education concentrators who take the ACT WorkKeys exam, 59.9% of ABSS students scored a silver, gold, or platinum level ACT National Career Readiness Certificate that signifies proficiency at essential skills needed for success in industry.

The 4-year cohort graduation rate for ABSS students in 2017-18 is 82.5%, the highest rate in district history. Eighty-eight (88) percent of all ABSS graduates completed high school with, at minimum, a third level math course.  For the second year, the accountability model includes a measurement called English Learner Progress.  This indicates the number of students in grades 3-8 and 10 who make progress on the ACCESS test - a test that measures English language proficiency for English language learners.  The English Learners Progress rate in 2018-2019 was 43.6%.

Seventy-six (76) percent, or 26 of the district’s 34 schools with a growth status, met or exceeded academic growth goals. In 2017-2018, sixty-two (62) percent or 21 of 34 schools met or exceeded academic growth goals. Ray Street Academy and the Alamance-Burlington Career and Technical Education Center do not report a traditional growth status.  In 2019, six (6) schools exceeded expected growth and nearly 62% of ABSS schools were designated with a school performance grade of A, B or C.  School Performance Grades (SPGs) are based upon the Grade Level Proficient standard (students earning Level 3, 4 or 5). The SPGs are derived from two components: School Achievement (80%) and School Growth (20%), and are assigned on a 15-point scale. 

“While the aggregate data may show slight variations from the previous year, there are numerous school-level accomplishments to celebrate”, remarked ABSS Superintendent Bruce Benson.  “Hillcrest Elementary, on the state’s short-list for incorporation into the Innovative School District based on 2017-2018 data, rose from an F-34 rating to a D-42 fueled by strategic leadership, high expectations, and community support.  Southern Alamance, Cummings, and Williams high schools each made impressive gains with their graduation rates increasing from 80.2% to 85.7%, 68.8% to 73.6%, and 83.8% to 87.9% respectively.”

Benson continued: “E.M. Holt Elementary achieved nine points more toward their SPG moving from a C-63 to a B-72; likewise, Andrews Elementary moved up a letter category from D to C, removing them from the state’s Low Performing list.  Similarly, Elon Elementary improved their SPG score from 58 to 65 within the 2018-2019 school year, demonstrating marked improvement in student proficiency and growth.  Additionally, Haw River Elementary increased their 3-5 Reading proficiency from 30.3% to 37.5%, and E.M. Yoder Elementary posted impressive gains moving from 74.5% to 92.9% proficient on the fifth grade science EOG.” 

Reflecting on the published results, Superintendent Benson remarked, “Behind the scenes our educators use these once-a-year results to identify teaching and coaching strategies that are needed to accelerate each child’s progress when gaps in student learning are evident. As a district team, our objective is to study the data points to identify strategies that will help reduce variance across schools. Numbers tell only part of the story of what is happening in our classrooms and schools each day, but they serve as an important benchmark for our continuous improvement model.”