Schools in Garner continue to rank in the middle or lower end of Wake County Schools in terms of school performance and the percentage of students on grade level.
And their 2014-15 test results didn’t show much change from the previous year.
According to state test results released Wednesday, seven of Garner’s 11 schools received lower performance scores than last year.
The new results, which were implemented the last academic year, are an effort to assess schools on two big measures – how students perform on certain tests and the rates at which students learn from year to year.
Never miss a local story.
The testing and growth results are used to generate A-F letter grades for schools.
Each school’s letter grade is a calculated from student testing scores, which account for 80 percent of the letter grade, and the measured growth of students. The growth component – which tracks improvement of students – makes up 20 percent of each school’s grade.
Schools are graded on a 15-point scale, so a score of 85 and above is an A, for example.
Seven Garner schools received a C letter grade. Both East Garner Elementary School and Vandora Springs Elementary received a D letter grade after receiving a C the previous year. East Garner Middle School also received a D.
Garner Magnet High School was the only Garner school to receive higher than a C. It received a B as it did last year.
Creech Road Elementary, on the other hand showed significant improvement this year, increasing it’s letter grade from a D to a C. Its total score rose 10 points and its proficiency rating also increased by 11.3 percentage points.
“We’ve put in a great deal of work last year,” Creech Road principal Seydric Williams said, “a lot of collaborating in regard to our teachers, reviewing a lot of data and trying to invdividualize that data for each student and trying to fill in those gaps.
Williams said for that reason he wasn’t surprised by the growth the school showed. However, he said he realizes that the school needs to keep moving forward. While Creech Road has has increased significant, still only only half of the students are proficient.
“While we celebrate our improvements, we’re talking about our students’ livelihoods and what is good for their lives,” Williams said. “I realize we still have a lot of growing to do and trying to realize all of our students have an opportunity to experience and see success.”
No Garner school has more than two-thirds of its students on grade level.
As in the first year, the results show a strong correlation between the wealth of student families and school grades, according to an analysis by The News & Observer. About 88 percent of the D’s and F’s were at in Wake County schools where at least three out of five students qualified for free or reduced-price lunches.
Most schools in Garner have a higher percentage of students receiving subsidized lunches than the rest of the district.
State officials in the last couple of years have stressed the importance of looking at the growth of each school. However, this year, 5 out of 11 Garner schools did not meet growth.
Only three schools met growth this year, and three exceeded it, which were lower numbers than last year.
The results were much of the same for the rest of the county and state.
Johnston County Scores
As for the schools in the Cleveland community, all schools except one received a letter grade of B. Polenta Elementary received a C. Compared to its counterparts in the district, Cleveland schools scored higher.
Again, Polenta has a slightly higher percentage of its students on subsidized lunches.
West View Elementary, Cleveland High School and Cleveland Middle School showed increases in student achievement, whereas Cleveland Elementary showed a slight decrease. This year, 76.2 percent of its students were on grade level, compared to 78 percent last year.
All schools either met or exceeded growth.
“We are not satisfied with the results as they are; however, we are happy with the percentage of our schools that have met and exceeded growth,” said Ed Croom, superintendent of Johnston County Schools. “We have continued to see increases in reading and math scores.”
Kueng Hui and Lynn Bonner contributed to this report