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Armed With New Data Standards, Ste. Genevieve R-II Fares Well In Annual Performance Review

New data analysis by the Missouri Department of Secondary Education (DESE) is making school districts look deeper into their scores and see how students are actually learning.

At the December 17 Ste. Genevieve R-II Board of Education meeting, Dr. Paul Taylor, assistant superintendent of schools, reviewed in some detail the changes in the information and looked at disaggregated graduation rates and other results from the district’s Annual Performance Report (APR).

Free and reduced lunch students’ graduation rates bounced back up in 2019. After dropping from 84.2 percent [above the state average of 81.7 percent] in 2017 to 72.3 [below the state mark of 82.1 percent] in 2018, it came back up to 83.6 percent in 2019. That was above the state figure of 82.5 percent.

Taylor called it “very valuable data that assures us that we are being equitable in the services that we provide our students.”

All three years the full-priced students had the highest graduation rates, at 94.0, 91.9 and 95.0 percent.

Reduced-price lunch students were second, with graduation rates of 91.7, 85.7 and 90.9 percent. The free-lunch students lagged behind at 82.2, 66.76 and 81.8 percent. …

In addition to the new concepts, plenty of familiar scores were also presented.

In English Language Arts, district third-graders had a 367.2 mark, compared to 322.8 for the state. For fourth grade, the district clocked in at 370.3, to 345.9 for the state. The fifth-grade figures were 384.5, compared to 344.2 statewide.

In math, local third-graders topped the state average 366.9 to 317.7, while fourth-graders beat it 367.4 to 313.2 and fifth-graders 362.9 to 305.5

Things went well in middle school testing, too.

In English, sixth-graders topped the state figure 352.21 to 335.3, seventh-graders 348.0 to 334.5 and eighth-graders 359.6 to 336.2.

In math, R-II sixth-graders topped the state figure 363.6 to 309.2, seventh-graders 360.8 to 299.5 and eighth-graders by a whopping 371.1 to 271.3.

In science, fifth- and eighth- grade students were measured. The district’s fifth-graders  topped the state average 342.4 to 303.0. In eighth grade, R-II students topped the state figure 363.6 to 319.3. For eighth-grade biology, the edge was 326.6 to 319.3.

“The question is, ‘What should we celebrate?’” Taylor asked. “Anything in the ‘On Track’ or ‘Target’ category in Growth we should celebrate; anything in the ‘On Track’ or ‘Target’ category in Status we should celebrate.”

See complete story in the January 1 edition of the Herald.

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