Thanks to Dr. Brad Robinson for providing the following school board update:
Preliminary State Results Indicate Significant Student Achievement Gains for Norfolk Public Schools
Booker T. Washington High School is Projected to Earn Full State Accreditation Status
Norfolk Public Schools (NPS) administrators project that more schools will earn full state accreditation this year, and that Booker T. Washington High School will earn full accreditation status with double-digit gains in the percentages of students who met or exceeded state benchmarks in math, social studies, and science.
The projection, to be shared with the City of Norfolk School Board during a live-streamed work session on Wednesday, August 5, 2015, is based upon preliminary results of the annual Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL) tests. The Virginia Department of Education is scheduled to release official SOL pass rates on August 11, 2015, and to release official accreditation ratings in September 2015. (Click here to see the full presentation.)
Preliminary results indicate that division-wide, Norfolk’s students significantly improved their academic performance. NPS experienced double-digit growth in every core content area, compared to the prior school year.
Nearly 82% of NPS schools demonstrated an increase in the percentage of students meeting and exceeding state benchmarks in English and social studies, according to the preliminary results; nearly 89% of schools increased the percentage of students meeting and exceeding state standards in math; and 68% of schools increased student performance in science.
According to preliminary results, math and social studies were areas of strength division-wide, with 77% of schools meeting the state benchmark in math, and 86% of schools meeting the benchmark in social studies.
“We are proud of our students, teachers, principals, and support team for the growth and improvements demonstrated,” said Michael E Thornton, Ph.D., acting superintendent. “We will continue to strengthen our effort and resolve toward achieving full accreditation for all schools, while focusing on the individual needs and aspirations of our students.”
At the high school level, all schools met or exceeded state benchmarks for English, and four schools exceeded state benchmarks in math, history and science. At the middle school level, students performed better in English, math and social studies compared with the prior year. Preliminary results indicate that five middle schools realized double-digit gains in social studies.
The division projects that a total of four additional schools will earn full accreditation this year: Booker T. Washington High School, Camp Allen Elementary School, Larrymore Elementary School, and Willard Elementary School. Four of five high schools are expected to be fully accredited.
While emphasizing the division’s growth, Dr. Thornton and Chief Academic Officer Kipp D. Rogers, Ph.D., said the preliminary results also clearly indicate the areas of continued challenge for Norfolk Public Schools. The division must focus on ensuring that all schools earn full accreditation, and also that achievement gaps between subgroups of students are closed.