… But state ‘report cards’ show gains throughout school district

By Bobby Bryant, Editor, editor@newsandpress.net

The S.C. Department of Education released school and district report cards last week, and the data indicate that Darlington County School District students made gains in many areas, the district said in a news release.

Education Superintendent Tim Newman said end-of-year testing from the 2018-19 school year shows clear improvements in the district’s student achievement.

“I am pleased that the state’s measurements, as reflected in the annual report cards, show the hard work that our teachers and administrators are doing to help our students be more successful,” Newman said in a statement.

“I am confident that the internal systems we have put into place to monitor student achievement and growth throughout the year are confirming the true successes in our classrooms. The intentional focus we have on daily teaching produces data on a regular basis that allows us to monitor and adjust our practices to meet the needs of our students. As part of our internal measurements, we’re looking at the actual scores on these tests to determine the growth shown by our students.”

The South Carolina College- and Career-Ready Assessments (SC Ready) are statewide assessments in English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics.

They are the end-of-the year gauges used to check students’ understanding. The SC Ready tests are also significant factors in the report card ratings.

In a statement, Newman noted that all but one of 13 schools in DCSD that administered the SC Ready examinations in ELA and Mathematics saw gains over the previous year. Similarly, all four DCSD high schools saw improvement in English 1 and Algebra end-of-course testing, as well as increased high school graduation rates.

“We believe these indicators are the true representation for measuring our students’ successes and are reflective of the day-to-day classroom focus and achievement, regardless of how the items may be portrayed on a report card,” Newman said.

Listed below are the absolute ratings given by the state for schools in DCSD. Also listed in parenthesis are last year’s absolute ratings along with the change in numerical values of those ratings when compared to last year’s report card.

Brockington Elementary Magnet School – Below average, (Below average), improved 3 points
Brunson-Dargan Elementary School – Average, (Below average), improved 9 points
Carolina Elementary School – Good, (Average), improved 9 points
Darlington High School – Average, (Average), improved 7 points
Darlington Middle School – Good, (Average), improved 6 points
Hartsville High School – Good, (Average), improved 3 points
Hartsville Middle School – Good, (Good), improved 1 point
Lamar High School – Excellent, (Good), improved 7 points
Mayo High School for Math, Science & Technology – Excellent, (Excellent), remained the same
North Hartsville Elementary School – Good, (Below average), improved 19 points
Rosenwald Elementary School – Below average, (Below average), improved 4 points
Rosenwald Middle School – Below average, (Average), decreased 8 points
Spaulding Elementary School – Average, (Average), decreased 3 points
Spaulding Middle School – Excellent, (Excellent), improved 3 points
St. John’s Elementary School – Good, (Below average), improved 17 points
Thornwell School for the Arts – Unsatisfactory, (Unsatisfactory), improved 8 points
West Hartsville Elementary School – Good, (Below average), improved 22 points

Author: Rachel Howell

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