St. Marys Hits 24 of 26 Indicators

ST. MARYS — According to preliminary numbers from an assessment taken during the school year that were recently released, a local school district has made the state requirements but is still struggling to meet the federal guidelines.

St. Marys City Schools received its results from the Ohio Achievement Assessments taken earlier this year.

The data showed St. Marys students met 24 out of the 26 state indicators — eighth-grade science and fifth-grade math were the ones they did not meet.

The preliminary results are as follows: The students beat the 75 percent passage rate in all grades in reading; in math, they exceeded the 75 percent passage rate in all but fifth grade; in science, which had only fifth and eighth-grade students tested, there was a more than 75 percent passage rate in fifth grade and students were below the rate in eighth grade.

“Our numbers in reading look really good,” St. Marys Instruction Director Bill Steinbrunner said. “We had quite a few grades that had more than 90 percent passage. The kids overall are doing alright.”

Where the district struggled, Steinbrunner noted, was again with students with disabilities in reading and math.

“That’s where we’ve been struggling the last couple years,” he said, noting the district has implemented changes to help to try to work on the area and see improvement.

Because of the issues with the students with disabilities making the requirement, the district hasn’t made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) the last few years.

“It looks like we won’t make it again this year,” Steinbrunner said.

Also for AYP this year, the district did not meet the requirements for economically disadvantaged students.

“The passage rate for this year was higher — between 85 and 90 percent — to make AYP,” Steinbrunner said.

AYP, he said, is part of the No Child Left Behind Act, which has the goal of every child being proficient by 2014.

“We have two different sets of standards to work with,” Steinbrunner said. “We’re doing OK by the state standards.”

The state requires a 75 percent passage rate, while, to make AYP, the passage rate requirement has climbed each year.

“It’s different for each grade level,” Steinbrunner added.

He noted for the 2011-12 school year, the passage rate is between 80 and 85 percent, depending on the grade level, to meet the AYP requirements. The AYP requirement for reading this year was 87 to 90 percent.

“It goes up into the 90s next year across the board,” Steinbrunner said.

Because the district did not meet AYP again, students will be receiving a letter in the mail after the state report card is released.

“The report card will come out, and we’ll send a letter in the beginning of the school year, which will say we didn’t make AYP and are in District Improvement Year 3,” Steinbrunner said. “We’ll have to offer supplemental educational services.”

He noted the district offered the services, which would be something like what is offered at Sylvan Learning Center, and didn’t have anyone participate in them. The final numbers will come out in August when the district receives its report card.

“Adequate Yearly Progress, Performance Index and Value Added are yet to be determined, but it looks like we are on track to get all but 2 points on the District Report Card, which could mean another excellent rating,” Steinbrunner said.