School districts across the state are finding out how proficient their students are.
Thursday, School District 25 in Pocatello and Chubbuck presented its accountability review.
But what is in this accountability review? The accountability review is really the school district reporting its student achievement to the federal government. It calculates all test scores and graduation rates, and does separate calculations based on grade, ethnicity, and students in special programs.
Superintendent Mary Vagner said School District 25 is performing very well.
The presentation Thursday explained how elementary and middle school kids are growing from year to year, and if that growth is enough. High school ratings factor in advanced placement courses, dual credit, and graduation rates.
Vagner says the district takes the information and forms a plan.
"We'll look at our data coming up here in the next couple weeks,” Vagner said. “Then goals will be set for the year, and we will continue to strive to increase student levels of achievement."
So how are they measured? The schools are rated on a star system, with five being the top and one indicating a major improvement plan is needed.
Seven schools were ranked as 5-star schools: Chubbuck, Edahow, Gate City, Syringa, Tyhee and Washington elementaries, and Kinport Acadamy, aka the Alameda Center.
Eight schools were ranked as 4-star schools: Indian Hills, Jefferson and Wilcox elementaries, Pocatello Community Charter School, Franklin Middle School and Century, Highland and Pocatello high schools.
Six schools were ranked as 3-star schools: Ellis, Greenacres, Lewis and Clark and Tendoy elemetaries, along with Hawthorne and Irving Middle Schools.
Only one school was ranked with two stars: New Horizon Center. However, Superintendent Vagner sid the numbers there can be a little misleading.
"If you don't grow far enough, fast enough, then those points are detracted from the school's star rating,” she said.
So with the measures for advanced courses, the numbers will not reflect well on New Horizons, even though Vagner said the students are doing great.
She said students learn at different rates, and individual growth needs to be an important measure.
Again with New Horizons, the graduation rate for that school was significantly lower than the other high schools.
Vagner said it doesn't take into account students graduating this summer. She said the number of students there varies a lot too - one class can have 75 students, the next, 30.
The school district implemented this star rating system from the state a few years ago, after Idaho asked for a waiver from the No Child Left Behind Act.