New Hanover County Schools Announces 2011 - 2012 Test Results
For the first time ever, New Hanover County Schools’ (NHCS) four-year cohort graduation rate has exceeded 80%. This is a dramatic improvement over last year’s 73.9%, continuing an upward trend for NHCS. The district also performed well on annual tests at the end of the 2011-2012 academic year. Proficiencies in both the End of Course (EOC) tests and the End of Grade (EOG) tests increased.
NHCS Superintendent Dr. Tim Markley commended the dedication of the teachers and administrators in helping the students achieve success. “I give a great deal of credit to our teachers and principals, who – despite the financial difficulties of the last four years – did a great job in preparing our students for success,” he said. Additionally, the district’s Drop Out Prevention Committee played a critical role in the success in bringing the graduation rate up.
NHCS met 96% of the targets compared to 78.6% in 2010-2011. In Grades 3-8, additional proficiency targets were met in reading and math for Economically Disadvantaged Students (ED) and Students with Disabilities (SWD) and in math for Hispanic students.
Improvements in Grade 10 include additional proficiency targets being met in reading for Black students, Economically Disadvantaged Students (ED), and Students with Disabilities (SWD) and in math for Students with Disabilities (SWD).
Additionally, one participation target previously missed was met in Grade 10 reading for Students with Disabilities (SWD).
Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs) have replaced the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) measures previously required by the U.S. Department of Education. Under AMOs, proficiency targets are set for each student subgroup. Before AMOs were allowed, there was only one proficiency target for all student subgroups.
“Obviously, efforts such as expanding our participation in NC Virtual Public School, staff changes in key positions, the work of Instructional Services’ delivery and preparation of the new Common Core standards, and the diligence of our Testing Department in ensuring our data was accurate have been effective in making a difference. We are not where we want to be, particularly in regards to the performance our African American male students in grades 3-8. Their proficiency rates have increased and they are trending in the right direction; however, there is still a lot work that needs to be done,” Dr. Markley added.
“I am confident that NHCS will continue to improve as we keep the strategies and systems that are working well for us and refine areas where we are challenged. My goal is for NHCS to become the highest performing district in the state over the next several years,” Dr. Markley said.
2011-2012 Accountability Background: NHCS is committed to a rigorous and comprehensive plan to improve educational outcomes for all students, close achievement gaps, increase equity, and improve the quality of instruction so that students are prepared for success in postsecondary education and the workforce. In order to adequately measure yearly progress for all students, North Carolina’s revised and federally-approved accountability model focuses on the following three accountability measures:
All NHCS projected targets were met for each group. The
graduation rate increased from seventy-three and nine-tenths
percent to eighty and four-tenths percent with highest gains for
the Black subgroup (increase 6.5 points), Hispanic subgroup
(increase 13.8 points), Two or More Races subgroup (increase
12.4 points), and the Economically Disadvantaged (ED) (increase
6.4 points) subgroup.
III. AMO Proficiency Details
Grades 3-8: Proficiency in reading
remained nearly constant at 77.4%, up from 77.2% in 2011. Math
proficiency improved from 86.7% to 87.7%.
Proficiency in math Grade 10 for
the student groups in 2012.
District wide, 85% of the schools met or exceeded the state’s growth expectations, up from 70% last year. Ninety percent of Title I schools met or exceeded growth expectations.