Arlington school district campuses improved in student achievement under the state’s new accountability ratings.Thursday the Texas Education Agency released numbers showing that 65 of the district’s 68 campuses are rated as “met standard.”Under the state’s new system, which is based on measurements including standardized test scores, graduation rates and student readiness for college or work, districts and schools are rated either “met standard” or “improvement required.”The local numbers reflect results statewide: 93 percent of all school districts and charter schools met the passing standard, as did 84 percent of campuses. Of the 9 percent that got “improvement required,” 477 are elementary schools, 133 are middle schools and 129 are high schools.Lamar High School, Sam Houston High School, Shackelford Junior High School, Morton Elementary and Roquemore Elementary are all schools previously rated academically unacceptable but are now rated “met standard,” district spokeswoman Leslie Johnston said.Nichols Junior High, which failed to meet “adequate yearly progress,” a benchmark and former way of measuring student success via the federal No Child Left Behind Law, and did not meet its benchmarks in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012, has met the state standard.Johnston said the new AYP results are not available yet.However, Ellis, Speer and Thornton elementary schools have been rated “improvement required,” which means they can face federal and state sanctions that allow students to transfer and administrators and teachers to be removed if they do not improve.Kennedale school district campuses also “met standard.”Schools are also eligible to receive distinction designations, in one of three or all three areas including: academic achievement in reading/ELA, academic achievement in math and top 25 percent student progress.Arlington’s Bailey, Carter, Gunn, Hutcheson, Ousely and Shackelford Junior High School’s received distinction designations in all three areas. Overall 39 campuses received the distinction designations. “I am proud of the success of our students and out campuses,” Superintendent Marcelo Cavazos said in a news release. “I am particularly pleased that all 12 junior highs received distinction designations and that six junior highs received all three.”Four of the five Kennedale campuses received at least one distinction designation: James F. Delaney Elementary, R.F. Patterson Elementary, James A. Arthur Intermediate and Kennedale Junior High School. “A transition to a new accountability system comes with a great deal of uncertainty,” state Education Commissioner Michael Williams said in a news release. “The 2013 ratings confirm that the vast majority of districts and campuses are meeting the state’s standards and providing a quality education for our students.” This report includes material from the Star-Telegram archives.
Monica S. Nagy, 817-390-7792 Twitter:@MonicaNagyFWST