Four out of five South Carolina schools fell short of meeting Adequate Yearly Progress in 2008 as federal goals increased.
Adequate Yearly Progress is the federal school report card for No Child Left Behind standards. Each year schools must meet 100 percent of educational goals, varying from 17 to 21 objectives, to pass federal guidelines.
The goal is to have al students meet proficient, or B-plus averages, in English/language arts and math curricula by 2014.
Officials blame the poor showing on the federal government's decision to move test score targets for elementary and middle schools up more than 50 percent from last year’s requirements.
For example, schools in which 38.2 percent of pupils scored proficient in English last year would need to score 58.8 percent proficient this year to meet standards.
Complete data for the state, districts and high schools, however, won’t be available until next week because of computation errors.
Only eight elementary and middle schools in Aiken County met 100 percent of goals. No elementary or middle school in Edgefield, Barnwell or McCormick counties met AYP.
“Principals will have trouble explaining why their schools didn’t meet AYP for the first time even though their performance improved,” state Education Superintendent Jim Rex Schools said in a press release. “It’s a perplexing message when your school appears to be getting better and worse at the same time. Your gain ends up looking like a loss.”
AYP reports scores for all students, including subgroups based on race, ethnicity, disability and income.
Schools not meeting all progress goals each year are deemed “failing” under federal guidelines.
SCHOOLS MEETING ALL PROGRESS GOALS
Aiken Elementary, Belvedere Elementary, Chukker Creek Elementary, Byrd Elementary, Gloverville Elementary, North Augusta Elementary, North Augusta Middle, Oakwood-Windsor Elementary