Schools show progress with CATS

October 07, 2003|HERB BROCK

Only six of the area's more than 40 schools met or exceeded their accountability goals, but many others did show progress toward their targets, according to a report on the latest Commonwealth Accountability Testing System results released today by the Kentucky Department of Education.

The Midpoint Report shows how Kentucky's nearly 1,300 schools fared on CATS in testing and portfolio work done in 2002-03, and compared those scores against each school's 2002-04 improvement goals.

Those whose 2002-03 scores exceeded their improvement goals included two of the seven elementary schools in the Lincoln County District and two of the six elementary schools in the Casey County District.

In Lincoln County, Hustonville had an index of 84.2, compared to its goal of 80.1, and McKinney Elementary School recorded an index of 77.2, compared to its goal of 63.9. In Casey County, Phillips Elementary had an index of 78, compared to its goal of 65.5, and Douglas Elementary School had an index of 76.8, compared to its goal of 74.8.


The other two goal-busters were Paint Lick Elementary School in Garrard County, 84.2 compared to 80.1; and Boyle County Middle School, 80.1 compared to 78.

Woodlawn Elementary School in Boyle County fell below its goal, but its index of 84.2 tied Hustonville and Paint Lick elementaries for recording the highest index scores in the area. In addition, Woodlawn's goal of 87.2 was the highest goal for any school in the area.

In comparing the performances of area schools to state averages, 16 of the 25 elementary schools fell below the state average of 76, while six (Woodlawn, Douglas, Liberty, Paint Lick, Hustonville and McKinney) exceeded it, and three matched it; six of the eight middle schools whose scores were in the report fell below the state average of 72, while two (Boyle County and Kenneth King) exceeded it; and five of the eight high schools fell below the state average of 70, while three (Burgin, Boyle County and Garrard County) exceeded it.

Here is a district-by-district look at the latest CATS results:

Boyle County

Boyle County improved districtwide by 1.5 points, but Superintendent Pam Rogers said there are concerns.

"The Boyle County School District total accountability index, which includes academic as well as non-academic components such as attendance, dropout and retention rates along with successful transition to adult life data, has improved, from 75.6 last year to 77.1 this year," said Rogers in a prepared statement. "Our staffs are feeling both elation and disappointment, leading to celebration and determination to do better. We already have begun to address our concerns."

Perryville Elementary recorded an increase from 61.6 to 74.1, Junction City rose from 59.4 to 60.4, and Boyle Middle School rose from 75.1 to 77.6.

But Woodlawn Elementary and Boyle High School suffered setbacks.

"We are very happy for Perryville Elementary where the academic index has improved from 61.6 to 74.1," said Rogers.

"Woodlawn Elementary declined from an academic index of 85.9 last year to 82.9 this year, producing an accountability index of 84.2," said Rogers. "The high school declined in academic index from 71 to 70.8."

Rogers said procedures are being implemented to address problems exposed by the testing.

"Last Friday teachers in all five of our schools analyzed CATS data and other academic indicators to target content areas where additional instructional modifications appear to be needed," she said.

Casey County

Two Casey County schools have meet goals, five others are progressing, and one is at Level I at the midpoint report, according to Janet Emerson, district assessment coordinator.

Douglas and Phillips elementary schools are meeting goals, while the middle and high schools, Liberty, Middleburg and Phelps elementary schools are progressing, and Garrett elementary is at Level I.

Scores for the elementary schools show that students scored above the state average in social studies and practical living/vocational studies.

The greatest gains at the elementary level were in practical living/vocational studies with a gain of 8 points over last year's scores, said Emerson. "This gain boosted our scores to exceed the state average by nearly 6 points (5.9768). Our second highest gainers in science with a gain of 7.49 points."

Casey County Middle School had the greatest gains in reading. The middle school gained almost 10 points, boosting its scores to exceed state average of 82.7. Writing scores, at 54.8, also exceeded the state average of 51.8, Emerson said.

The high school showed slight gains in the content areas of math, social studies and arts and humanities. Scores declined in the remaining content areas of reading, science, writing and practical living/vocational studies.

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