The Georgia Department of Education Monday released the second College and Career Ready Performance Index, and local schools had mixed results.
In February 2012, Georgia was one of 10 states granted a waiver from the federal No Child Left Behind Act, which since 2001 had guided how schools would be evaluated. The index replaced No Child and was designed by the state to give parents and the public a more comprehensive system than the pass/fail one in place under No Child’s Adequate Yearly Progress plan, according to a document released by the state.
Under the index program, each school and each district receives a score based on a 100-point scale and is designed around each student’s college or career readiness or “the level of achievement required in order for a student to enroll in two- or four-year colleges and universities,” the document states. Points are earned in the following categories: achievement (up to 70), progress (up to 15) and achievement gap (up to 15).
Schools can also receive challenge points (up to 10) if they have a significant number of economically disadvantaged students, English learner students and students with disabilities meeting goals. Schools can also get challenge points for going beyond the index’s targets by challenging students to exceed expectations and partake in college- and career-ready programs.
Starting with the 2013-14 academic year, schools can also earn points based on their financial efficiency and school climate, but those will be for public information only and not factor into the overall scores. This year’s scores are based on evaluations and grades from the 2012-13 academic year. The 2013 data was calculated reflecting the new calculation, and the 2012 scores were recalculated applying the new calculation methodology to the same 2012 data.
Atlanta Public Schools, which serve Buckhead, had an average score of 65.3. Cobb County Schools, which serve Vinings, had a score of 80.7, and Fulton County Schools, which serve Sandy Springs, was just below with a 77.5. The Atlanta district increased its scores 5.5 points from 2012, the Cobb district dropped its scores 0.9 points and the Fulton district upped its scores 4.6 points.
“In one year, our students and teachers have managed to close the CCRPI gap with the state by almost 4 points. While this number keeps us 10 points behind the state average, it also shows tremendous effort and growth on the part of our hard-working students, many of whom excel in the face of tremendous odds,” Atlanta Superintendent Erroll B. Davis Jr. said in a statement. “We have yet to realize the excellence envisioned in student achievement across APS, but the district is moving forward.”
In a statement, Fulton Superintendent Robert Avossa said, “The College and Career Ready Performance Index uses a variety of metrics that are more meaningful in measuring school performance. It’s also aligned with our strategic goals of improving graduation rates and preparing students for college or the workforce, showing a statewide commitment toward preparing our students for the future.”
In Buckhead, North Atlanta High had a score of 70.6 but its middle and elementary schools fared much better. Two elementary schools — Brandon (94.2) and Jackson Elementary (93.2) — each had scores of 90 or higher.
“I think it’s terrific," Brandon Principal Karen Evans said of her school's grade. "It comes from sound teaching, teaching the standards and tracking the students’ progress. The bottom line is always putting a quality teacher in front of the kids. We have a good team.”
Brandon improved by 3.5 points compared to 2012.
“I’m very pleased with our growth scores from 2012 to 2013. We grew significantly,” Evans said, referring to one of the score’s subcategories, progress points. “Most of our students grew at least a year and some more than a year in all academic areas.”
In Sandy Springs, North Springs and Riverwood high schools had mediocre scores, 75.6 and 73.5, respectively. However, all but one of its elementary schools each had scores of 80 or above, with Heards Ferry (91.2) the only one to break 90.
Smyrna’s Campbell High, which serves Vinings residents, had a 61.9 but its feeder schools fared better. Campbell Middle had a 79.2 and Teasley Elementary scored an 89.2.
“We’re thrilled about [the scores],” Teasley Principal Leslie Mansfield said. “It’s nice to see the strategies we’ve put in place are reflecting that we are making gains. We are making progress with our students. Recognition goes to our teachers and how they’re meeting the needs of our students. We’re closing that achievement gap. … I [also] appreciate the support of the community."
Statewide, Georgia’s scores were 75.8 overall, 77.8 for elementary schools, 74.6 for middle schools and 71.8 for high schools.
Phone calls and emails to Heards Ferry Principal Lisa Nash seeking comment on the scores were not returned as of Thursday afternoon.
Here are each district’s and school’s individual Career Ready Performance Index (CCRPI) scores:
District 2013 score 2012 score
Atlanta Public Schools 65.3 59.8
Cobb County Schools 80.7 81.6
Fulton County Schools 77.5 73.9
Cobb County Schools
School 2013 score 2012 score
Campbell High 61.9 75.3
Campbell Middle 79.2 71.8
Teasley Elementary 89.2 81.4
Atlanta Public Schools
School 2013 score 2012 score
North Atlanta High 70.6 64.8
Sutton Middle 84.3 77.4
Bolton Academy 63.2 61.5
Brandon Elementary 94.2 90.7
Garden Hills Elementary 76.0 68.6
Jackson Elementary 93.2 94.0
Rivers Elementary 76.8 72.7
Smith Elementary 86.6 89.8
Fulton County Schools
School 2013 score 2012 score
North Springs High 75.6 71.3
Riverwood High 73.5 69.5
Ridgeview Middle 71.7 78.3
Sandy Springs Middle 75.8 67.3
Dunwoody Springs Elementary 65.9 82.0
Heards Ferry Elementary 91.2 90.9
High Point Elementary 73.9 77.8
Ison Springs Elementary 86.9 72.2
Lake Forest Elementary 70.6 69.9
Spalding Drive Elementary 78.6 71
Woodland Elementary 85.8 72.9