ROGERSVILLE — By placing more emphasis on math this past school year the Hawkins County School system as a whole met all state targets for math achievement in the 2013 TCAP scores.
But, the school system as a whole did miss the target for overall ‘reading/language arts’ (RLA) achievement in two categories from the TCAP tests taken in April including the 3rd-thorugh-8th grade (RLA) category, as well as the separately scored 7th grade RLA category.
Director of school Charlotte Britton said the system will be focusing on RLA in the 2013-14 school year.
“For the upcoming year, training will be provided for reading teachers in Grades K-3,” Britton said. “In addition, a new reading textbook Series for grades K-6, Journeys by Houghton-Mifflin, has been adopted. The week prior to school beginning, all K-6 teachers will be trained in the new reading series.”
Britton added, “Every school in our district had teachers trained during the summer in Common Core RLA. The First District Core Office in Johnson City has just provided a Reading Specialist for the school systems in the district to provide additional support to school systems.”
Some overall TCAP scores were released by school systems across the state last week. Specific numbers and detailed school-by-school results are typically released in November.
Britton said that although the system overall missed the state target for 3-8 RLA, there was some positive improvement.
The 3rd grade RLA showed gains in Proficient and Advanced Achievement of Students with an increase of 2.3 percent meeting Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs) for this past year.
Seventh Grade RLA had negative gains of -4.5 percent and did not meet the target.
For the 2013 year the 40.4 percent were Proficient and Advanced in 7th Grade RLA.
Consequently, 3rd through 8th RLA did not make the gains in increasing the Percent of Proficient and Advanced (45.9 percent) which was a -1.9 percent change in Proficient and Advanced from the previous year.
Hawkins County Schools met achievement targets for (grades and subject): 3-8 Math, 3rd RLA, 3rd Math, 7th Math, 9-12 Algebra I, 9-12 Algebra II, 9-12 English II, 9-12 English III, 9-12 Graduation Rate.
“Hawkins County Schools have made steady gains in achievement over the years and will continue with our continuous improvement plan,” Britton said. “This Plan/Do/Study/Act Process includes a focused plan on strategies, implementing our plan by using research based teaching strategies, reviewing test data on a continuous basis, and improving in areas in need of focus. Through teacher evaluations Hawkins County Schools are improving the quality of instruction within all classrooms throughout our school system.”
Another area that Hawkins County Schools will be attempting to make improvement this year is “Gap Closure” for demographic subgroup populations.
When a school district has at least a total of 30 students within specific subgroup populations, the state establishes measures comparing how that specific population’s scores compare to all students within the district.
Hawkins County Schools met the total number for three subgroups: Black/Hispanic/Native (BHN); Economically Disadvantaged (ED); and Students with Disabilities (SWD).
Those gap closure targets are measured across the school district for Math and Reading in grades 3 through 8, Algebra I, Algebra II, English II, and English III. Hawkins County Schools failed to meet the state guidelines for 10 of the 11 subject categories it was measured in.
Britton noted that although Hawkins County did not meet the majority of the gap closure targets for the district established by the Tennessee Department of Education, the subgroups for BHN and ED primarily fell significantly below the state average for those subgroups. Subgroup closure targets in Hawkins County Schools for Students with Disabilities fell within the range of overall State measures.
Hawkins County Schools met targets for ED vs. Non-ED Algebra I and II.
Hawkins County Schools did not meet the Gap Closure target for:BHN vs. All 3-8 Math; BHN vs. All 3-8 Reading; ED. vs. Non-ED 3-8 Reading; ED vs. Non-ED 3-8 Math; BHN vs. All- English II/ English III; ED vs. Non-ED-Algebra I/Algebra II; ED vs. Non ED-English II/English III; SWD vs. Non-SWD Algebra 1/Algebra II; and SWD vs. Non- SWD English II/English III.
“Student academic growth within each of the core subjects of RLA, Math, Science, and Social Studies is vital to meeting the achievement targets established by the State,” Britton said. “Not all students enter school or progress from grade to grade on the same academic level. Therefore, as we work toward meeting achievement goals, it is necessary that the district looks at each student individually and measure each student’s academic growth. Within the area of student growth, the district made significant growth in the majority of the grade levels and subjects reported.”