State Releases School District Testing Results
F-F District Remains Fully Accredited
But State Assessment Scores Decline
Board and District officials taking action
Results from the 2014 Missouri Annual Performance Report (APR) for the Ferguson-Florissant School District released Aug. 29 show a decline in the district’s overall score, despite gains in some areas. Ferguson-Florissant received 92 points out of a possible 140 points on the state’s annual assessment, or 65.7 percent.
Ferguson-Florissant remains fully accredited. The determination of accreditation status of all Missouri districts is scheduled to occur in 2015.
This year’s score of 65.7 percent is a 3.6 percent decline from last year’s score of 69.3 percent. Among the five standards measured in the Annual Performance Report (APR), Ferguson-Florissant saw an increase in Subgroup Achievement, declines in Academic Achievement and Attendance, and flat scores for College & Career Readiness and Graduation Rate.
The district experienced gains in some specific content areas, including in academic achievement in social studies with an increase of 16.6 points over last year’s score. Ferguson-Florissant students also continued a positive trend in Algebra I scores, with an increase of almost 50 points in a six-year period.
District officials point to several factors that likely contributed to the overall loss of points on this year’s Annual Performance Report. Budget cuts which impacted staff and programs and issues of consistency have challenged the District. In addition, like many others across the state as reported by the Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE), Ferguson-Florissant was impacted by test form changes, changing test standards and an unusually high number of instructional days lost due to weather.
“We are not pleased with these results, but we are not surprised by them, either,” Larrew continued. “We are aware of the serious issues facing our District and have already started to address those issues through a comprehensive strategic planning process undertaken in the past year. We have begun to take the steps necessary to bring about positive change.”
Meeting with the Board of Education on Wednesday, district leaders shared information about their plans for improvement. The initiatives discussed centered around four key focus areas:
- Parent engagement: Increase contact with students’ families at home to support attendance and achievement;
- Academic focus: Refine, implement and/or pilot initiatives in all core subject areas with a writing emphasis across all subject areas;
- Accountability: Insist on accountability with increased monitoring of teaching and learning;
- Consistency: Develop consistency with district-wide initiatives in all areas at all levels to replicate best practices and eliminate ineffective practices.
“Our performance this year highlights the critical importance of the steps we already are taking to improve the District,” said Larrew. “Over the past year, we developed a strategic plan which was approved by the Board of Education in July. That plan identifies clearly what we need to do to improve and who is responsible for achieving results. The same issues that were recognized during the development of the strategic plan are evident in our scores this year. While we are disappointed in our performance, the path we must follow in order to improve is clear.”
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