Pickens County School District received a grade of "B" under the new federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act accountability system.
The district's overall grade of B¹ (point total or composite score was 88.9) means the district's performance exceeded the state's expectations.
The state received an A (90).
Here's a look at schools in our Patch area:School Name Overall Grade Point Total East End Elementary A 99.9 Forest Acres Elementary B 84.2 West End Elementary A 91.6 Richard H. Gettys Middle B 87.1 Easley High C 79.2
To see other schools, click here.
Under the old system, the South Carolina Department of Education would report Adequately Yearly Progress (AYP) results for the districts and schools as "Met" or "Not Met."
Now with this new federal accountability system, schools receive a letter grade of A, B, C, D or F.
To see the department's flexibility waiver request click here.
The waiver request called for an improvement to the state's accountability system. One of the changes included reporting letter grades.
The plan also includes a new educator evaluation system and increasing transparency of student achievement by student subgroups.
Letter grades are awarded to schools and districts based on student achievement in several areas including English-language Arts, math and high school graduation rates.
The old system of AYP frustrated many in the educational community. Even if a school met all but one objective, the school would still be labeled as "Not Met" (not meeting the standards).
For example, in 2011 Forest Acres Elementary met 15 out of 15 objectives and was considered to have met AYP.
At Dacusville Elementary, the school met 15 out of 16 objectives and was labeled as a school not meeting AYP.
According to the state department, one of the goals in developing an alternative to AYP was that the new system would not be an "all or nothing" system.
State education officials say the new system will give schools and districts "a much more realistic accountability system..."
The criteria for the grading system for high schools will still be different from elementary and middle schools.
ESEA Federal Accountability System Key ¹ Index Score Grade Description 90-100 A Performance substantially exceeds the state's expectations. 80-89.9 B Performance exceeds the state's expectations. 70-79.9 C Performance meets the state's expectations. 60-69.9 D Performance does not meet the state's expectations. Less than 60 F Performance is substantially below the state's expectations.
2012-2013 Title I Reward Schools-SC's ESEA/Federal Accountability System
The ESEA waiver also brings a new recognition program for Title I schools, which are schools that have a high number of low-income students, and receive extra federal money to help meet the needs of at-risk and low-income students.
According to the state education office, the ESEA waiver requires the department recognizes high-performing schools and low-performing schools.
Title I schools are listed as the following:
- Priority Schools: The lowest performing Title I schools.
- Focus Schools: Title I schools with the highest average performance gap between subgroups.
- Reward Schools for Performance: The highest performing Title I schools in a given year.
- Reward Schools for Progress: Title I schools that demonstrate the most substantial progress in either the “all students” group or in identified subgroups from one school year to the next.
Reward Schools for Performance in our Patch area: West End Elementary School.
For more information about the Federal Accountability System data, visit the South Carolina Department of Education website.