CRCT math scores vary widely

Georgia's children made gains in math, but a closer look at test scores shows wide swings -- both up and down -- in Richmond County.

For instance, National Hills Elementary School fifth-graders made a 38-point gain, while fifth-graders at Hornsby dropped 38 points, according to Criterion-Referenced Competency Test results released Tuesday by the Georgia Department of Education.

The state expected gains this year, a year after tougher math standards were introduced in fifth and eighth grades.

"There's that thing that is called the 'implementation dip,' " department spokesman Matt Cardoza said.

Still, he wasn't sure why results varied so greatly. Testing officials haven't had time to analyze the results of school-level data, Mr. Cardoza said.

Richmond County Superintendent Dana Bedden said the disparities stood out to him as well.

"We clearly have inconsistencies in our performance," he said, but he cautioned against reading too much into results by comparing the same grade level one year to the next.

"You can make some real erroneous assumptions if you compare this group of third-graders to last year's group," he said. "There's inherently a flaw to this."

Columbia County's math results were more consistent. Every middle school there showed an increase over last year in the eighth-grade math portion of the CRCT.

Last year, 473 eighth-graders failed the test. This year, 317 students failed. In all, 81 percent of eighth-graders passed the test, an 8 percent increase over 2008.

Evans Middle showed the most dramatic increase, moving from 63.7 percent passing in 2008 to 81.9 percent this year. Lisa Soloff, the county's Title I director, credited educators for the improvements.

The county's newest middle school, Stallings Island, performed better than any other middle school in the county, with 92.7 percent passing in math and 97.7 percent passing in reading.

The CRCT is particularly important to children in third, fifth and eighth grades. Third-graders must pass reading and fifth- and eighth-graders must pass both reading and math to automatically advance to the next grade.

The test is also a major factor in determining whether a school makes "adequate yearly progress," the measure used by No Child Left Behind.

The results released Tuesday don't reflect the results of the CRCT retest given earlier this summer.

Columbia County Bureau Chief Donnie Fetter contributed to this story.

Reach Greg Gelpi at (706) 828-3851 or greg.gelpi@augustachronicle.com.

COLUMBIA COUNTY
SchoolTHIRD GRADE READINGFIFTH GRADE READINGMATH
Lewiston Elementary School95.693.894.4
River Ridge Elementary School100.098.498.4
Westmont Elementary School97.692.480.9
Evans Elementary School96.495.891.7
Blue Ridge Elementary School97.997.793.2
Brookwood Elementary School94.192.686.2
Stevens Creek Elementary School98.097.193.7
Riverside Elementary School93.796.996.9
Cedar Ridge Elementary School93.591.781.8
Greenbrier Elementary School100.098.292.7
Euchee Creek Elementary School88.792.574.1
Bel Air Elementary School97.592.684.0
Martinez Elementary School91.892.987.1
North Columbia Elementary School98.294.581.8
North Harlem Elementary School84.379.879.8
Grovetown Elementary School90.784.183.0
South Columbia Elementary School92.284.868.2

School EIGHTH GRADE READING EIGHTH GRADE MATH
Greenbrier Middle School97.487.7
Grovetown Middle School94.363.8
Evans Middle School96.581.9
Stallings Island Middle School97.792.7
Riverside Middle School96.588.9
Harlem Middle School93.075.5
Lakeside Middle School95.977.9
Columbia Middle School95.682.8

RICHMOND COUNTY
School THIRD GRADE READINGFIFTH GRADE READING MATH
Craig Houghton Elementary School70.677.632.8
Hephzibah Elementary School88.585.174.7
Freedom Park Elementary School91.386.971.4
Wilkinson Gardens Elementary School60.381.350.0
Deer Chase Elementary School81.774.564.2
Meadowbrook Elementary School77.870.575.8
Jamestown Elementary School94.491.374.3
Collins Elementary School66.777.261.4
Goshen Elementary School96.993.068.6
Sue Reynolds Elementary School95.678.059.8
Diamond Lakes Elementary School80.776.959.0
Willis Foreman Elementary School73.876.535.8
Tobacco Road Elementary School86.375.064.3
McBean Elementary School85.488.069.3
Lake Forest Hills Elementary School89.392.682.4
Jenkins-White Elementary Charter School85.578.853.8
Garrett Elementary School96.494.486.1
National Hills Elementary School87.584.881.8
Rollins Elementary School75.472.553.6
C.T. Walker Traditional Magnet School96.499.097.9
Windsor Spring Elementary School84.671.649.4
Barton Chapel Elementary School71.666.759.4
Copeland Elementary School70.073.631.9
Glenn Hills Elementary School67.766.246.3
A. Brian Merry Elementary School94.792.978.6
Warren Road Elementary School93.388.482.6
Hornsby Elementary School74.594.953.8
Bayvale Elementary School80.467.465.9
Milledge Elementary School68.284.661.5
Blythe Elementary School82.163.853.4
Gracewood Elementary School83.375.630.8
Lamar Elementary School71.184.851.5
Monte Sano Elementary School80.687.078.3
Southside Elementary School61.373.585.7
Wheeless Road Elementary School59.073.770.2
Terrace Manor Elementary School78.769.085.7
Hains Elementary School82.874.170.4

SchoolEIGHTH GRADE READING EIGHTH GRADE MATH
Freedom Park Elementary School95.173.8
Morgan Road Middle School88.840.0
Glenn Hills Middle School87.555.1
Spirit Creek Middle School84.434.6
Langford Middle School86.952.5
C.T. Walker Traditional Magnet School100.092.0
Hephzibah Middle School89.462.7
East Augusta Middle School75.040.0
Sego Middle School80.651.4
John S. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School100.099.0
Murphey Middle School75.629.9
Tubman Middle School78.926.1
Tutt Middle School91.757.9

SCHOOL-LEVEL RESULTS

Grade 1
Grade 2
Grade 3
Grade 4
Grade 5
Grade 6
Grade 7
Grade 8

COMPARISON: 2008/2009 RESULTS

Grade 1
Grade 2
Grade 3
Grade 4
Grade 5
Grade 6
Grade 7
Grade 8