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TCS Schools Earn Solid Performance Grades

Transylvania County Schools excels, delivers solid performance despite economic disadvantages


Transylvania County Schools received solid marks in the recent “School Report Card” recently released by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction. Based on academic growth and targets for proficiency, TCS had three “B” schools and six “C” schools for the 2017-18 school year.

Starting in 2013-14, the North Carolina General Assembly legislature required the assignment of a letter grade for each school, based on different values for yearly growth (20 percent) and achievement (80 percent) on state tests.

Overall as a district, Transylvania County Schools ranked 22nd in the state for Grade Level Proficiency, with 64.3% of tested students achieving proficiency in 2017-18.

“We know our students are more than test scores,” said Dr. Jeff McDaris, “and we know that many of the best things our students learn can never be measured by a state test. Nevertheless, we are proud once again and want to celebrate the consistent effort and strong growth numbers achieved by our schools and the district as a whole.”

T.C. Henderson School of Science and Technology, Brevard High School, and Rosman High School earned “B” grades for their growth and overall achievement.

Public School Forum analysis of letter grades compared to students on free-or-reduced lunch According to the formula for measuring expected student progress from year to year, Brevard Elementary, Brevard High, and Rosman High also met their growth index targets, with Rosman High earning the highest growth marks for the year in the district. Six remaining schools did not meet growth this year.

“I am very proud of the work our teachers and students put into preparing for all their courses,” said Rosman High principal Jason Ormsby. “To see that our students leaped forward in math, biology, and especially the WorkKeys assessment for career readiness, means that everyone put in a solid effort and set themselves up for even more success in the future.”

The School Report Card or “school performance grade” uses the ACT to measure college readiness and the ACT WorkKeys for career readiness. Based on those data, Transylvania County Schools ranked 14th statewide for meeting all ACT benchmarks and 12th for students earning a “Silver” or better on the WorkKeys.

According to the executive summary released with school performance grades, economics may affect a school’s letter grade: “Schools with a higher percentage of economically disadvantaged students earned fewer As and Bs, and more Cs, Ds, and Fs” than more affluent schools. Economics do not play a similar role in whether a school meets or exceeds yearly growth, according to the summary.

While TCS students ranked 22nd in the state for grade level proficiency, Transylvania County ranks 73rd on measures of child poverty according to the Public School Forum’s “Roadmap of Need” for 2018; 31% of Transylvania County children live in poverty, and 54% qualify for free-and-reduced lunch.

In a press release, the NC Department of Public Instruction clarified the meaning of data released this month as follows:

“More than a third of North Carolina’s 2,537 public schools earned As and Bs for 2017-18 under the state’s annual School Performance Grade accountability measurement, with nearly three quarters meeting or exceeding expectations for academic progress. About 22 percent of the schools received a grade of D or F.

“Because of changes to the state’s accountability measurements required under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, school grades, growth results and graduation rates for the 2017-18 school year are not comparable to past performance during the five years the state has assessed schools using A-F letter grades and 13 years reporting the Cohort Graduation Rate.”

Below are the school performance grades and growth index for the year. For more information and the complete set of data released for 2017-18, visit the DPI website at www.ncpublicschools.org/accountability/reporting.



Brevard Elementary: C, Met growth

Brevard High: B, Met growth

Brevard Middle: C, Did not meet growth

Pisgah Forest Elementary: C, Did not meet growth

Davidson River School: Alternative school, Not measured on this scale

Rosman Elementary: C, Did not meet growth

Rosman High: B, Met growth

Rosman Middle: C, Did not meet growth

T.C. Henderson Elementary: B, Did not meet growth

 

Graph: The Public School Forum created this chart by comparing data for school letter grades with the number of students receiving free-or-reduced lunch, following a format previously used by DPI. Transylvania County Schools did not earn any Ds or Fs in 2017-18.