A recently released state report puts the Pike County R-III School District in the top half of districts and charter schools in the state.
The district, which includes Clopton High School, basically maintained the results it achieved in reports from 2017 and 2016 in its 2018 Annual Performance Report. 2018’s result, reported as a percentage, was 97 percent, as opposed to 97.1 percent in 2017 and 2016.
The state report is based on school performance on five standards, factoring in both current results and their progress over time. On three of the five standards R-III achieved perfect marks — college and career readiness, attendance, and graduation rates.
The district slipped in the state’s measure of academic achievement, registering 92.5 percent, its worst result since 2013. In 2017, the state recorded a result of 98.2 percent in that category.
“Our academic achievement is one are we take a lot of pride in and when we saw that it had dropped, it definitely caught our attention,” Lagemann said. “Our content teachers have worked, and are continuing to work, to identify areas where our students struggled so we can adjust our curriculum and focus on areas that need improvement.”
The district received full credit for its results in mathematics and social studies and partial credit for English and Language Arts, accounting for its less than perfect score for academic achievement.
For younger elementary students, Henderson said the school had increased its focus on phonics, expanding the school’s program through second grade and increasing the amount of time spent on the topic in other grades. The school has also put in place policies intended to catch up students who are missing skills in mathematics.
The state also grades schools on how well they educate often underserved groups of students, including those eligible for free and reduced lunch programs, students with disabilities, racial minorities and students learning English as a second language.
On this measure, the state docked R-III points for performance in English and language arts, though the district’s overall result — 94 percent — is its best in the subgroup achievement category since at least 2013.
Typically, APR reports are put out before the start of the new school year. Both administrators and the superintendent agreed that the semester-long delay in the release of APR results stymied their typical efforts to use the results to inform their education approach. Henderson called the delay “frustrating.”
“Receiving our assessment scores and APR [in January] definitely put us behind and did not allow us to identify areas of concern as early as we normally do,” Lagemann said. “However, I have met with staff and they have provided good input and are working diligently within their departments to make sure our students are prepared for assessments later in the spring.”
These are the last set of APRs released that cover the period before a new round of budget cuts went into effect for the district which included, in part, a reduction of the school week from five to four days.
“The budget cuts implemented [previously] did not impact the test scores that are being referenced. Those instituted this year would be the first to impact the learning environment,” Harvey said. “We will work towards the challenges at hand to provide the best possible education.”
Pike County R-III tied for the 236th highest score in the state out of 554 districts and schools given a score by the state.