The Texas Education Agency last week released its accountability ratings for school districts and campuses across the state.
The TEA rates districts based on student achievement, school progress and closing the gaps. Student achievement is calculated by weighing STAAR test performance, college, career and military readiness and graduation rate. School progress takes into account academic growth, or the percentage of students who grew academically, and relative performance, which compares the student achievement percentage with the percentage of economically disadvantaged students. Closing the gaps weighs grade level performance, graduation rate, English language proficiency and college, career and military readiness.
For the 2018-19 school year, Allen ISD scored a 93 out of 100 for an A rating.
“We're proud of the performance of our students, and we're certainly proud of the hard work and dedication of our teachers and staff to show this continued performance and work with our students to continue to excel,” Superintendent Dr. Scott Niven said.
Sixteen of AISD’s 23 campuses, including Allen High School, received As, and six campuses received Bs. Only one school, Boyd Elementary, received lower than 80 overall in the individual scores with a 73. Niven said officials will focus on how to use the C ranking as an “opportunity for growth” and see if there are areas of they school system where adjustments can be made.
Lovejoy ISD received an overall score of A and 98 with all six campuses receiving an A.
“We always like affirmation that we are doing the right things when it comes to state testing, advanced placement testing or any additional assessments we use as academic measures,” LISD Superintendent Dr. Michael Goddard said. “However, this is just one part of numerous other factors we work to instill in our Lovejoy ISD students. We strive to not only grow our students in their academic pursuits, but also in their character, integrity and who they are to become as great young men and women.”
Many school officials around the state have been critical of the system’s reliance on the STAAR assessment test. Niven said the test is just one small opportunity to evaluate student growth.
“In Allen our student growth is much more focused on preparing them for life and to make sure that we're preparing them for when they graduate in a year or 12 years down the road so they're prepared for their next step,” he said.
Mike Morath, commissioner of education, defended the TEA’s rating system, described by many as a “snapshot in time.”
“This has been designed to recognize all that happens in Texas public schools,” Morath said. “It is not just about performance on standardized tests. It is a balanced indicator system that includes recognition of graduation rates, AP exams, industry credentials and SAT scores.”