New NC school test grades are out. Here are the best and worst in the Triangle.

More than two dozen public schools in the Triangle area received North Carolina’s top grade for student achievement Wednesday when the state released its 2018 school letter grades.

Statewide, 185 traditional public schools and charter schools earned the state’s A rating, which goes to schools that have high test scores and graduation rates. Of that group, 26 schools were in Wake, Durham and Orange counties.

At the other end of the scale, 10 Triangle schools were among 92 schools statewide that received an F grade.

North Carolina has been using the A-F school grading system since the 2013-14 school year. It was adopted by the Republican-led state legislature, with supporters saying the grades provide an easy way for parents and the community to see how individual schools are doing academically.

But critics, including many school officials, argue that the letter grades unfairly stigmatize schools for factors that may be beyond their schools. Those with high percentages of low-income students tend to get lower letter grades than schools with affluent enrollments.

For instance, the schools with A grades in the Wake County school system are mainly in western Cary and northern Wake and have relatively few low-income students.

The state rates schools on a 100-point scale, with most of the grade coming from the percentage of students who pass exams. Year-to-year progress contributes to 20 percent of that rating, allowing some credit for schools that help their students make gains even if they fall short of grade level. Graduation rates also factor into high school scores, generally keeping them out of the F zone.

Schools with a score of 85 or higher earn an A. An F means the total performance score fell below 40.

Go to https://bit.ly/2wGEwP6 for a Charlotte Observer/News & Observer searchable database of results for every North Carolina public school. Results are also available at http://www.ncpublicschools.org/accountability/reporting/ on the state’s website.

Here are the top- and bottom-rated schools in the region.

Wake County

County public schools earning an A: Davis Drive Elementary, Jones Dairy Elementary, Mills Park Elementary, Sycamore Creek Elementary, Davis Drive Middle, Heritage Middle, Mills Park Middle, Apex Friendship High, Green Hope High, Panther Creek High, Wake STEM Early College High School, Wake Early College of Health and Science and Wake Young Women’s Leadership Academy.

Charter schools earning an A: Endeavor Charter, Magellan Charter, Sterling Montessori Academy, Quest Academy, Raleigh Charter High and Triangle Math and Science Academy.

County public schools earning an F: Bugg Elementary, Creech Road Elementary and East Wake Middle.

Charter schools earning an F: Hope Charter Leadership Academy.

Durham County

County public schools earning an A: Mangum Elementary, City of Medicine Academy, Durham School of the Arts, J.D. Clement Early College and Middle College High.

Charter schools earning an A: None

County public schools earning an F: Eno Valley Elementary, Lakewood Elementary, C.C. Spaulding Elementary, Y.E. Smith Elementary, Brogden Middle and James E. Shepard Middle.

Charter schools earning an F: None

Orange County

Chapel Hill-Carrboro schools earning an A: Carrboro High, East Chapel Hill High.

Orange County public schools earning an A: None

Charter schools earning an A: None

Chapel Hill-Carrboro earning an F: None

Orange County public schools earning an F: None

Charter schools earning an F: None

T. Keung Hui: 919-829-4534, @nckhui
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