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Wayne, Cabell schools beat state averages

September 20, 2018

HUNTINGTON — For the most part, Cabell and Wayne counties’ combined 42 public schools exceeded the state average in the majority of indicators on the West Virginia Schools Balanced Scorecard, the new statewide school grading metric that replaces the prior “A-Through-F” accountability system.

Rather than assigning a cumulative letter-grade score to individual schools, the new Balanced Scorecard does not assign a ultimate, final score on each school.

Instead, the state issues each school’s scores on five criteria: proficiency in English and math via statewide testing (grades 3-8, 11), classroom benchmark assessments for English and math (grades 3-8), high school graduation rate, English proficiency among non-native speakers (an estimated 2,000 students in West Virginia), and “student success” - measured as attendance and behavior in elementary schools, and attendance, remaining on track to graduate, and post-secondary success in high schools.

Each criterion is graded at four levels, from highest to lowest: exceeds standard, meets standard, partially meets standard, and does not meet standard.

In Wayne County, there’s still plenty of room for improvement though math did improve at every grade level tested and performed well against the state average, Superintendent of Schools Todd Alexander said.

“That was definitely a positive, but we definitely have a lot of work to do,” Alexander said.

Buffalo Elementary was the only Wayne County school to fully meet standards in two of the four academic indicators, doing so in statewide testing for both English and math. Lavalette Elementary school also met standards in English state testing.

Three other schools met standards in math testing: Dunlow, East Lynn and Kellogg elementary schools.

At the secondary level, only Buffalo Middle, Ceredo-Kenova Middle and Vinson Middle partially met standards in both English and math state testing. While all three of the county’s high schools partially met standards in English, none met standards in math. Statewide, West Virginia’s schools only partially met standards for English and math in both state testing and in classroom benchmarks (middle schools did not meet benchmarks in math).

Ona Elementary School was the only school in either county to earn “meets standard” marks in both state testing and classroom benchmarks for math and English. Nichols Elementary and Martha Elementary both met standards for state testing in math and English, and for classroom benchmarks in English.

Ten elementary schools in Cabell County met standards in English state testing: Culloden, Davis Creek, Hite Saunders, Martha, Meadows, Nichols, Ona, Salt Rock, Southside and Village of Barboursville.

Though the district performed best in that particular subject, none of the four middle schools or two high schools fully met standard, and only five out of six partially met standard.

Four schools met standards in math state testing: Martha, Nichols, Ona and Salt Rock, while all but four elementary schools partially met those standards. Only two of the six secondary schools - and neither of the high schools - partially met those math standards.

“Student assessment results offer us a baseline of where the district is performing well academically and help us identify areas of weakness that require attention,” wrote Cabell County Superintendent of Schools Ryan Saxe. “Overall, our schools performed well in this first year of the new statewide accountability system.”

“I am very proud of our students, faculty and school leaders for what they have accomplished.”

The state’s high schools partially met standards for English, but not in math. Attendance also did not meet standards, meaning the state’s high schools have less than 80 percent daily attendance rates on average. English proficiency among non-native speakers also failed to meet standards at all grade levels statewide.

Full individual school results can be viewed by the public at www.mywvschool.org.

All 50 states are required to submit an accountability system to the federal government under the Every Student Succeeds Act, which was signed in 2015 as a reauthorization of No Child Left Behind.

The act is a symbolic shift from broad federal oversight to allow for more discretion at the state and county levels.

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