APS posts gains across board on state report card

10:27 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017 Homepage
Bob Andres/bandres@ajc.com

Atlanta Public Schools improved its state report card scores  for about two thirds of its schools.

The Georgia Department of Education on Thursday released results of the 2016-17 College and Career Ready Performance Index, a school report card that includes a variety of measures, with test performance the most important. The scores are based on a 100-point scale, with up to 10 possible bonus points. 

APS boosted its high school score by 5.5 points to a 69.4 on the 2017 index. Atlanta elementary schools picked up 2.8 points, bringing their score to a 69.8. Middle schools are up nearly a point to 63. The district’s overall score is a 68.3, up from 65.2 last year. The overall statewide average is 75.

The biggest gain was at Crim High School, which lifted its 2016 score by 23.9 points to 55.7. The district school to fall the most is Parkside Elementary School, whose score slipped by 13.9 points to 54.8.

Early next week the state plans to release its list of “turnaround eligible” schools -- which will include those in the bottom 5 percent of scores over the last three years. 

APS saw scores increase this year for 15 of the 16 historically lowest-performing schools that it has targeted for deep support and interventions. For some of those sites, the district has reconfigured the schools and named new principals. 

Among those schools, Thomasville Heights Elementary School posted the biggest gain, increasing its state score by 19.5 points to 59.8.  That school reopened last year under the management of the nonprofit Purpose Built Schools.

Superintendent Meria Carstarphen said the strategies the district has implemented to boost those struggling schools are showing results.

“The scores aren’t perfect..., but we know that we saw the writing on the wall. We started intervening right away and over time we do believe. .. that the improvements will come,” she said. “These scores are indicative of some progress, but we know that we need to still follow the turnaround strategy.”

Roughly a dozen APS schools fell into the bottom 5 percent of all Georgia schools for this year’s results, according to an analysis of just 2017 data by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. 

Among the district’s lowest scores this year are Fain Elementary School with a 48.5 and Harper-Archer Middle School with a 44.4. Both schools posted improvements over last year. 

Despite the improvements, APS still falls below the statewide averages. 

Across Georgia, elementary schools received a 73.9, middle schools received a 73.8, and high schools received a 77.6

Check back for more information on APS scores, comments from district officials, and a school database of scores.

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