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Some Richmond County schools make accountability gains

Monday, April 21, 2014 5:43 PM
Last updated Saturday, May 3, 2014 12:37 AM
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About half of Richmond County schools made one-year gains on Georgia’s 2013 accountability report card that measures student achievement and progress, although most still fall below the state average, according to data released Monday by the Department of Education.

The new College and Career Readiness Performance Index factors in test scores, progress made in closing the achievement gap, and a variety of other indicators to calculate a numerical score of zero to 100 for schools and districts.

After replacing the pass/fail Adequate Yearly Progress measurement under No Child Left Behind, the index debuted last year for 2011-12 data but the methodology has since been tweaked for more rigor and clarity. On Monday, the state released scores for the 2012-13 school year and reissued 2011-12 results under the revised formula.

Richmond County sits in what is theoretically the D range, averaging 60.1 percent in elementary, 61.5 in middle and 61.3 in high schools, below the state averages of 78.5, 75 and 72 respectively.

Columbia County schools outrank the state at 85.1 percent in elementary, 84.4 percent in middle and 84.5 percent for its high schools. Columbia County as a whole increased its 2013 scores for each grade cluster by about 2 percentage points over 2012.

Richmond County’s elementary schools gained 0.6 percentage point and middle schools jumped 2.6 points, while the high schools fell by about one point.

At 80.2 percent, Monte Sano Elementary School achieved the highest CCRPI score in Richmond County, apart from the four magnet schools. Principal Kathryn Perrin said the success was a result of teachers, parents and students placing a high priority on intervention in weak areas.

Students received weekly tutoring from volunteers and district consultants. To boost attendance, which is one of 14 indicators in the achievement category, students were rewarded with candy when they didn’t miss a day. The leadership team also broke down where the school stood weekly on the 14 indicators, which includes test scores, the percent of students with disabilities served in general education classes, writing achievement, career awareness and other factors.

“I knew we had the tools to work with, we just had to believe in the children and have the children believe in themselves,” Perrin said.

Along with the achievement category, which accounts for 60 percent of the total score, schools are given up to 25 progress points for the percentage of students showing growth on state assessments relative to students with similar past achievement. About 15 points are available for closing the achievement gap, which is measured by comparing the achievement of a school’s bottom 25 percent of students with the state average on standardized tests.

While it still lags behind the state’s average, Morgan Road Middle School showed the largest one-year gain in the district, jumping almost 19 points to 64.3 percent in 2013.

Principal Shontier Barnes said to make progress, utilizing data was key. Students were given weekly 10-question assessments in every class to monitor progress, and the school administered a mock Criterion Referenced Competency Test three weeks before the real thing to identify the trouble areas.

“My big thing is progress, that’s what I preach to my parents and my teachers,” Barnes said. “It’s great to see we did show progress and some of the things we’re implementing really helped.”

AT A GLANCE

GEORGIA

 20132012
Elementary78.574.9
Middle7573.9
High7273

RICHMOND COUNTY

 20132012
Elementary60.159.5
Middle61.558.9
High61.362.3

COLUMBIA COUNTY

 20132012
Elementary85.183.1
Middle84.482.5
High84.581.9
Comments (23) Add comment
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countyman
20581
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countyman 04/21/14 - 06:14 pm
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MSA

The metro includes Mcduffie, Burke, and even Lincoln in the recent changes to the MSA...

The media is partly responsible for the ongoing divisiness in the metro area. There's a reason why people always feel the need to compare Richmond versus the 3rd largest county instead of the 2nd largest which is Aiken...

Gage Creed
17856
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Gage Creed 04/21/14 - 07:29 pm
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Make up your own facts

Funny... nowhere on the stats does it mention the MSA.... Nor do the stats call out SC...

Typically... When I read about comparisons of school districts I always want to include Cheerios as a baseline...

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/21/14 - 07:29 pm
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Richmond County schools are

Richmond County schools are below average.

What else is new?

Countyman, this story isn't about the Augusta METRO, it's about Richmond and Columbia County, so nobody much cares about the MSMA, nobody is selling anything.

There is no divide, people that live in Aiken and Columbia County are well aware of how Richmond County is, and they choose to live elsewhere. That's not divisive at all, that's all about choice.

It would be ridiculous to compare the schools in Richmond County Georgia, to those in Aiken County South Carolina, seeing as how they are in two different states, and all of us understand that.

countyman
20581
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countyman 04/21/14 - 08:47 pm
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Facts

Why is the story about Richmond and Columbia if the metro includes multiple other counties in Georgia?

Many of the schools in Richmond(Monte Sano is non magnet)scored higher than the state average and beat out multiple schools in Columbia County..

Pops
10377
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Pops 04/21/14 - 08:10 pm
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Need to slow down that progress

"Richmond County sits in what is theoretically the D range, averaging 60.1 percent in elementary, 61.5 in middle and 61.3 in high schools, below the state averages of 78.5, 75 and 72 respectively."

The kids are going to burn themselves out making such great strides.

Pops
10377
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Pops 04/21/14 - 08:15 pm
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Why oh why are these schools

still struggling? ALL of this was supposed to be a non-issue when the busing started in the early seventies.....black leaders said by mixing the schools all test scores would improve. Please....please tell me what the problem is......

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/21/14 - 08:22 pm
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Because it wasn't about the

Because it wasn't about the Augusta METRO, Countyman, because most of the AC's subscribers live either in RC or CC.

Isn't it just too bad that the AC doesn't run its newspaper according to your dictates?

Gage Creed
17856
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Gage Creed 04/21/14 - 08:22 pm
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FACTS are pesky things!

"Many of the schools in Richmond(non magnet) scored higher than the state average and beat out multiple schools in Columbia County.."

That feat seems nearly impossible given the percentile division...

From Google "Many -a large number of
"many people agreed with her"
synonyms: numerous, a great/good deal of, a lot of, plenty of, countless, innumerable, scores of, crowds of, droves of, an army of, a horde of, a multitude of, a multiplicity of, multitudinous, multiple, untold"

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/21/14 - 08:25 pm
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Pops, the problem is because

Pops, the problem is because thousands of white families fled Augusta, and as a result the school system is 78% black.

And then there has been a series of dysfunctional RCBOE members that couldn't administer themselves out of a paper bag, let alone successfully run a school district.

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/21/14 - 08:42 pm
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But what really is unsettling

But what really is unsettling is that RC schools are still below average, and that is WITH the magnet schools included.

Just think what the numbers would look like if they were computed without the magnets.

Pops
10377
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Pops 04/21/14 - 08:46 pm
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I know what the results were and

continue to be.......I want someone from that era that pushed the idea to explain why black students can't keep up.....oh....please do not use the term "disadvantaged"....it's been used to death.....

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/21/14 - 09:58 pm
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Pops, it's a generational

Pops, it's a generational thing.

When the schools integrated, all the black kids- who had a substandard education, and who had parents that also had a substandard education-were thrust into the schools with no remediation provided. They never got the help to catch up.

And so it just continues on and on and on. As soon as the schools integrated, the whites started fleeing, and Josey and Laney became, for all intents and purposes, totally black high schools. So you had entire high schools that were filled with kids whose parents weren't educated, and who couldn't make sure that their kids were, either. And it just perpetuates. Even when they get a diploma, for many of them, their skills are so low, that they can't really help their kids, they can barely read or can't write a grammatical sentence.

I used to volunteer in a school (not in Augusta) that was 1/3 black, low-income students. Many were born to teenage mothers. Many were born to parents that had never completed high school. It doesn't take long for them to be unable to help their children with their work.

There were many parents that we had to print our notes that went home, because they couldn't read cursive, and they could barely read printing.

There is still a lot of illiteracy in Augusta, far more than people realize. And people take a lot for granted- people that are poor, and don't read well, don't have books or magazines. I have been in low-income homes that didn't have a single book, magazine, or newspaper in the house, ever. When you are struggling to put food on the table, there isn't any money for books. When you don't have transportation, it's very difficult to go to the library. When there isn't any paper to write on, homework doesn't get done. Or there isn't any pens or pencils, or crayons, or scissors and glue, or all the other supplies that kids need to be successful in school.

Nobody ever anticipated the white flight that happened in Augusta. Between the riot and the desegregation, people left Augusta in droves, and the city fathers, who were all local home-grown businessmen, had no idea that it would happen, how to fight it, and how to reverse it. They instead were more concerned about how to attract shoppers back to downtown, where they and their friends owned businesses. And it's still that way.

People that are poor, don't just happen. It's very popular to demonize poor people as "lazy", but they aren't. They are poor because they are poorly educated, or have serious social or mental or physical problems. It is very hard work to be poor, it's not easy. And people with serious problems don't help kids with their schoolwork, they are too busy just trying to survive. They can't cope with their own problems, let alone any of their children's problems. If they could cope with their problems, they wouldn't be poor.

And so it just cycles, over and over and over again.

Riverman1
86837
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Riverman1 04/21/14 - 10:27 pm
1
1
Pops, Blacks Are Coming Out Of Segregation Era

Pops, blacks are coming out of the segregation era which really wasn't over until the mid 70s. The parents of students today were poorly educated and not allowed to hold decent jobs. It's going to take a long time for the effects of segregation to go away.

Riverman1
86837
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Riverman1 04/21/14 - 10:07 pm
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Corgimom, excellent comment.

Corgimom, excellent comment. I posted before I saw yours, but we are on the same page.

avidreader
3377
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avidreader 04/22/14 - 06:11 am
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to Corgimom

Excellent commentary! Those who are not in the school system will never have an opportunity to experience what we see day-to-day.

seenitB4
90666
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seenitB4 04/22/14 - 07:49 am
2
1
corgi..Many did.

"Nobody ever anticipated the white flight that happened in Augusta."

I went to the school meetings when this "plan" was installed....they were WARNED that the plan would NOT work because they would MOVE!!

If they had just put kids in the neigborhood in the same school that probably would have worked...BUT NO way, not enough "mumbers" to please the minority group...WE REAP WHAT WE SOW....The only problem is...we just keep repeating the same mistakes.

We need to get gov out of public schools....they are doing a LOUSY job.

countyman
20581
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countyman 04/22/14 - 12:36 pm
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Facts

When did the RC school system become 78% black???

Why do people always love to challenge my remarks and never bring the facts to backup the statements??

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/22/14 - 12:42 pm
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The "Facts" that you are

The "Facts" that you are relying on, Countyman, comes from the outdated RCBOE site that is not current nor relevant.

It hasn't been updated for over a year. So it's not "fact" anymore, unless you really believe that a school system never changes. In FACT, if you looked at the Ga Dept of Education website yesterday, it listed RC as having a different number of students than the RCBOE site.

One of the RCBOE members said very recently that it was 78% black, and I believe them.

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/22/14 - 01:00 pm
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By the way, Countyman, if you

By the way, Countyman, if you would take the time to look at the website, you would find that most of the info is from the 2011-2012 school year, or nearly two years ago.

Outdated "facts" aren't facts.

paraprofessional
45
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paraprofessional 04/22/14 - 04:00 pm
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Corgimom

I agree with some of your comments but not all. School children go to the school library once a week so there is no reason not to have reading material at home. Also, they may not have crayons, etc. but do they have video games and dvds? It is a matter of priority not money. Crayons are 25 cents in August. There is no reason any child should not have school supplies at home. If education was important to the family, then those children would have supplies.

Gage Creed
17856
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Gage Creed 04/22/14 - 04:50 pm
0
0
When you make up your own "FACTS"

People tend to challenge you... (DUH)

Gage Creed
17856
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Gage Creed 04/22/14 - 04:57 pm
1
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"Many of the schools in

"Many of the schools in Richmond(Monte Sano is non magnet)scored higher than the state average and beat out multiple schools in Columbia County.."

I would say that given the RC averages... NOT MANY of RC schools "beat out" CC schools...

60 percentile vs 80 percentile? Really? REALLY?

corgimom
33993
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corgimom 04/22/14 - 10:41 pm
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Paraprofessional,

Paraprofessional, preschoolers don't have access to school libraries. And most school libraries only allow a student to check out one or two books at a time, from an extremely limited selection.

One of the best ways to impart to a child that reading is important is for a child to see a parent reading, and to live in a household where books is an integral part of the home, not just one book per week.

There are many poor families that do not have video games and DVDs. However, many of those children that do have them, received them for free either as gifts from relatives on from holiday giveaways.

As for crayons being cheap, buying school supplies is a hardship for many families, and they don't have the money to buy two sets, one for school and one for home. Take a look at a school supply list. It's not cheap by any means.

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