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IL schools show great progress in AYP scores

May 19, 2010
MEREDITH — Schools across the Inter-Lakes School District reflected significant improvements in AYP scores.

District Curriculum Coordinator Kathleen Hill made a presentation to the Inter-Lakes School Board on Tuesday showing how all schools in the district did on making Adequate Yearly Progress.

AYP is based on scores for the NECAP test in October of 2009 and the results of the four ALT Assessment tests taken by students in the district who were unable to take the NECAP.

An index system was devised using the NECAP and ALT scores to calculate AYP. AYP is determined for students overall in reading and math and several different subgroups of students.

"There are 19 potential ways for you to miss AYP," Hill said. "It only takes one."

In the previous years, schools had missed AYP in the subgroup for educationally disabled students, and previous year's tests showed drops. Administrators and teachers then took part in initiatives to encourage students further and bring scores up.

The index scores to reach this year were 91 in reading and 88 in math, reflecting an increase in index scores leading to 100 in both categories by 2014.

Inter-Lakes Elementary made AYP with the school making the Confidence Interval for educationally disabled students. Under the Confidence Interval, the school scored close to the target. Another requirement for making the confidence interval is having at least one student who moved to Proficient or above.

"I didn't have just one student who jumped to Proficient, I had multiple students jump up to the proficient range," said ILES Principal Steve Kelley.

Students with educational disabilities also made AYP at the Middle Tier under Safe Harbor, meaning the category received at least 10 percentage points better than the previous year.

"We were talking more than a 20 percent gain," said Middle Tier Principal Everett Bennett. "We didn't squeak by on AYP this year."

Bennett also said there was a large improvement in students who are socio-economically disadvantaged, a group that also made Safe Harbor.

Due to making AYP for the second year in a row, the Middle Tier is now off the School in Need of Improvement list.

Superintendent Phil McCormack said the district started identifying children in certain groups and making curriculum changes and interventions.

All of Sandwich Central School made AYP with not enough students in any subgroup to warrant a report.

Inter-Lakes High School made AYP through Safe Harbor in Math as well as Safe Harbor in Math for economically disadvantaged students. The 11th grade, the grade that was tested, also has too few educationally disabled students to report on.

The district exceeded AYP benchmarks in both Reading and Math, scoring 93.2 in Reading (with 91 percent required) and 90.3 in Math (with 88 percent required).

"We're seeing in a semester the fruits of our labor, that this isn't and hasn't been a one-year effort. Nothing is more real than looking at these trends," said School Board Chair Richard Hanson, who praised the team effort that resulted in these scores. "I just think you just deserve to be acknowledged for that and I'm so pleased you've accomplished what you've accomplished."

Varney Smith
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