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AYP Report Shows Progress

Media Contact: GaDOE Communications Office, (404) 463-1487,   Public Contact: (404) 656-2800,    View the AYP Website         July 25, 2008 -- More than two-thirds of Georgia's public schools made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in 2008, even as the bar was raised across the board.  "Not only did all the academic measures of Adequate Yearly Progress go up this year, but we continued to raise the rigor of the work our students are doing, especially in mathematics," said State Superintendent of Schools Kathy Cox. "But even with the higher bar and the increased rigor, a majority of our schools met the mark."     Superintendent Cox released the state’s annual Adequate Yearly Progress report Friday morning. She also announced that the state's preliminary graduation rate for 2008 is 74.4 percent – up more than two points from last year.     "This two point increase represents 6,000 more students that graduated on time with a full diploma in 2008," Superintendent Cox said. "This is the result of hard work by a lot of students and strong collaboration among principals, teachers, counselors, graduation coaches and parents."     The final graduation rate will be calculated when summer graduates are added. This fall, the AYP report will be updated, as well, to account for summer graduates and summer retest results for students in grades 3, 5 and 8.    HIGHER BAR, MORE RIGOR      In 2008, it was harder for all schools to make AYP for two main reasons.  First, the percentage of students that had to pass state tests in math, reading and English went up for all grade levels ( click here to see chart ). Secondly, students were doing more rigorous work and taking more rigorous tests in 2008, especially in mathematics.     Superintendent Cox emphasized that in 2007-2008 the state's more rigorous curriculum and more rigorous tests in mathematics were implemented in all grades considered for AYP in elementary schools.     "It was a lot tougher for elementary schools this year," she said. "Still, more than 3 out of every 4 elementary schools made AYP, the best performance of all grade levels"     However, Superintendent Cox said it was important to embrace more rigorous standards in mathematics and she is confident that elementary schools are prepared.     "It's very important for our elementary school students to get a strong foundation in math," Superintendent Cox said. "I have a tremendous amount of faith in our elementary school principals and teachers. I know they will rise to the challenge in math, just like they have in reading, and we will see much better AYP numbers next year."     About 69 percent of all schools made AYP, including 76 percent of elementary schools. About 65 percent of middle schools and 48 percent of high schools made AYP in 2008.    NEEDS IMPROVEMENT SCHOOLS      There are 340 schools in Georgia that are in Needs Improvement status, meaning these schools have missed AYP for two or more consecutive years. Needs Improvement (NI) schools must offer options to parents – such as tutoring or school choice – and may need to take specific action to improve student performance. The consequence a school faces depends on how long it has been in Needs Improvement.     In 2008, 37 schools made AYP for the second consecutive year and got out of Needs Improvement status -- including six that had been in NI status for five or more years (see attached list).     "Even with the increased rigor and the higher bar, these 37 schools were able to get over the hurdles and shake the Needs Improvement label," Superintendent Cox said. "Congratulations to the staff, parents and students of these schools."     Additionally, nine of the state's 19 "contract-monitored" schools made AYP this year (see attached list). These schools had been in Needs Improvement for 7 or more years.     "These schools entered a contract with the state and promised to get the job done -- and that's just what they did," Superintendent Cox said. "This is a great example of how the state, a district and a school can work together to improve student achievement."    GRADUATION RATE      The state's preliminary graduation rate is 74.4 percent -- the highest it has ever been. This rate is expected to increase once summer graduates are included.     "The graduation rate not only went up overall, but increased among every subgroup," the Superintendent said. "There is still work to be done, but thanks to all the effort and teamwork, we are continuing to move the needle."     Under the state's NCLB plan, the graduation rate represents the percentage of students who received a full diploma in four years and a summer. This figure does not include special education diplomas or certificates of attendance ( click here to see chart ).    37 SCHOOLS THAT CAME OUT OF NEEDS IMPROVEMENT STATUS  Atlanta Public Schools, Sutton Middle School  Bartow County, South Central Middle School  Ben Hill County, Ben Hill County Middle School  Chatham County, West Chatham Middle School  Clayton County, Kilpatrick Elementary School  Clayton County, Babb Middle School  Clinch County, Clinch County Elementary  Cobb County, Norton Park Elementary School  Cobb County, South Cobb High School  Coweta County, East Coweta High School  DeKalb County, Chapel Hill Middle School  DeKalb County, Henderson Middle School  DeKalb County, Woodward Elementary School  Dodge County, Dodge County Middle School  Early County, Early County Middle School  Effingham County, Effingham County High School  Fulton County, Riverwood High School  Gilmer County, Gilmer Middle School  Glynn County, Glynn Middle School  Gordon County, Ashworth Middle School  Greene County, Greene County High School  Gwinnett County, Norcross High School  Gwinnett County, Shiloh Middle School  Gwinnett County, Lilburn Middle School  Gwinnett County, Summerour Middle School  Hall County, Chestatee Middle School  Hall County, Lyman Hall Elementary School  Hall County, Myers Elementary School  Houston County, Northside Middle School  Houston County, Perry High School  Long County, Long County High School  Meriwether County, George E. Washington Elementary School  Richmond County, Hornsby Elementary School  Sumter County, Staley Middle School  Tattnall County, Tattnall County High School  Taylor County, Taylor County Upper Elementary  Whitfield County, North Whitfield Middle School    NINE CONTRACT-MONITORED SCHOOLS THAT MADE AYP  (Needs Improvement for Seven Years)   Atlanta Public Schools, Kennedy Middle School  Dougherty County, Merry Acres Middle School  Hall County, East Hall Middle School  Mitchell County, Mitchell County Middle School  Muscogee County, Baker Middle School  Richmond County, Morgan Road Middle School  Richmond County, Tubman Middle School  Stewart County, Stewart-Quitman High School  Thomasville City, MacIntyre Park Middle School    31 SCHOOLS THAT HAVE MADE AYP FOR 10 CONSECUTIVE YEARS  Atlanta Public Schools, Fain Elementary School  Atlanta Public Schools, D. H. Stanton Elementary School  Bacon County, Bacon County Primary School  Berrien County, Berrien Primary School  Bleckley County, Bleckley County Primary School  Burke County, Waynesboro Primary School  Charlton County, Bethune Elementary School  Crisp County, Blackshear Trail Elementary School  Crisp County, J. S. Pate Elementary School  Dalton City, Roan Elementary School  Dublin City, Susie Dasher Elementary School  Dublin City, Saxon Heights Elementary School  Emanuel County, Swainsboro Primary School  Fayette County, Robert J. Burch Elementary School  Fayette County, North Fayette Elementary School  Fulton County, Randolph Elementary School  Gainesville City, Enota Multiple Intelligences Academy  Jasper County, Jasper County Primary School  McDuffie County, Thomson Elementary School  McDuffie County, Maxwell Elementary School  Mitchell County, Mitchell County Primary School  Monroe County, T.G. Scott Elementary School  Monroe County, Samuel E. Hubbard Elementary School  Oconee County, Oconee County Primary School  Terrell County, Cooper Primary School  Thomas County, Garrison-Pilcher Elementary School  Washington County, Crawford Primary School  Washington County, Elder Primary School  White County, Jack P Nix Primary  Wilkes County, Washington-Wilkes Primary School  Worth County, Worth County Primary School    SYSTEMS THAT HAD 100% OF THEIR SCHOOLS MAKE AYP   Bremen City  Buford City  Cartersville City  CCAT  Chickamauga City  Clay County  Commerce City  Echols County  Evans County  Fayette County  Franklin County  Hancock County  Heard County  Jefferson City  Jefferson County  Lee County  Long County  Miller County  Monroe County  Morgan County  Oconee County  Oglethorpe County  Pierce County  Pike County  Quitman County  Rabun County  Randolph County  Stephens County  Stewart County  Towns County  Trion City  Union County  Wheeler County  Wilkes County