Scores for the 2009 Adequate Yearly Progress Report for No Child Left Behind and the Kentucky Core Content Tests (KCCT) have been released and all of Rowan County’s schools have met all or the majority of their goals for the 2008-2009 school year. The No Child Left Behind report measures growth in the percentage of students in each school who scored proficient or above in either reading or mathematics on Kentucky Core Content Tests, which were administered last spring. KCCT also measures progress in the areas of Science, Social Studies, and Writing On-Demand.
Complex scoring methods are used in the federal No Child Left Behind program, such as dividing student population into sub-groups, such as ethnicity and special needs. NCLB also uses graduation and drop-out rates to measure goals met. These sub-groups make up part of the goals that each school and the district are required to meet each year. Rowan County School’s four elementary schools have been identified as making Adequate Yearly Progress, meeting all the goals set for them by NCLB. The elementary students made significant gains in many subject areas, most notably mathematics.
Both Rowan County Middle School and Rowan County Senior High School met the majority of their NCLB goals, with the middle school achieving 10 of the thirteen. The high school met 7 of the ten goals set for them by No Child Left Behind. According to the NCLB guidelines, unless all schools within a district meet 100% of the goals in all areas each year, the district is identified as not meeting the progress requirements set by No Child Left Behind. The Rowan County School District met 11 of the thirteen NCLB goals.
Rowan County Schools Superintendent Marvin Moore stated, “The teachers and staff of Rowan County Schools are working hard every day to reach our goals and to meet the expectations of NCLB. It’s important that everyone realize we cannot use the same strategies and techniques that our teachers used when we were in school, because things have changed. We must be willing to use the data we receive concerning each student and individualize instruction to meet those individual needs. This is exactly what our teachers are doing.”
After looking at the results of the NCLB report, Patty Brown, co-coordinator for District Assessment, said, “Each year No Child Left Behind sets objectives for our students to reach in the areas of reading and math, a target score. Our students, as a whole, are well above those targeted objectives in both areas.”
Bev Gilliam, principal of Rodburn Elementary, showed her pride in her students and her faculty when she said, “Year-after-year, Rodburn students shine when it comes to test score results. “Because of the efforts of the students and the faculty, seventy percent of our students scored either proficient or distinguished in the area of reading this year. In math, students scored four percent higher in the distinguished category. On-demand writing scores showed an increase in the number of proficient students.”
Larry Tapp, new principal at Tilden Hogge Elementary School, was pleased with the scores for his school. “I am very pleased with the results. This report continues to show that we are making improvements and also gives us the opportunity to see where we need to focus our attention to continue the improvements that we are seeing. As always the goal will be to do what is best for kids, which will be our focus even more now that we have our scores back.”
While all of Rowan County’s schools – elementary, middle, and high – have been building on their successes, they have also been focused on strengthening areas in which improvements are needed. The schools have targeted individual student needs by improving curriculum, assessing student needs, and providing intervention. The Bluegrass Discovery Academy, which serves students at the middle school and high school levels, has been providing guidance to students needing academic assistance. District-wide training for teachers has been expanded to all areas of the curriculum, helping them to strengthen their teaching methods, thereby improving the quality of teaching in the classroom.
“During the 08-09 school year, we provided in-school small group and individual tutoring in math and reading. We’ve expanded our efforts this year to include math classes co-taught by a math specialist and a learning strategies specialist. The two teachers design and implement instruction for students in a reduced class size setting,” said Paula Stafford, assistant principal at Rowan County Middle School. “RCMS students and staff are hard-working talented individuals. We are proud of their efforts and dedication to making our school a great place to learn.”
The complete NCLB report is available on the website for the Kentucky Department of Education, www.education.ky.gov. A copy of the report is also available at the Rowan County Board of Education. If you have any questions about any of the improvements being made or if you would like to volunteer at any of the district schools, please contact Mike Mathews, Title I Coordinator for Rowan County Schools, at 784-8928.