Schools Show Gains in Preliminary EOG/EOC Results

Preliminary results released by Guilford County Schools (GCS) show schools making positive gains on 2010-11 End-of-Grade (EOG) and End-of-Course (EOC) tests. Among the improvements reported, two schools posted 100 percent proficiency, 13 posted composite scores of more than 90 percent and 19 schools earned significant gains by increasing their scores by five points or more.

Overall, GCS gained 1.3 percentage points for a total performance composite of 74.5 percent. Contributing to this improvement, 48 schools showed growth of more than two points. Only one school remained below 50 percent, a marked improvement since the 2007-08 school year when there were 30 schools with performance composites below 50 percent. GCS reduced this number to 15 in 2008-09 and then to six in 2009-10.

Of the 13 schools that achieved composite scores of more than 90 percent, two schools - Brown Summit Middle and The Early College at Guilford - earned a perfect 100. The other schools earning above 90 percent were The Middle College at GTCC-Greensboro, The Academy at Smith, Oak Ridge Elementary, Weaver Academy, Greensboro College Middle College, Kernodle Middle, Northwest Middle, Summerfield Elementary, Northwest High, Brooks Global Studies and Southwest Elementary.

The number of schools with performance composites above the 80 percent mark has more than doubled in three years. The preliminary results show 43 schools with scores above 80 percent while there were only 17 in 2007-08.

"Our students, staff and parents have much to be proud of," said Superintendent Maurice "Mo" Green. "We begin each school year confident that our students will be equipped with the skills they need to do well academically, and it's rewarding to see the test results at the end of the year to prove it."

Of the 19 schools that increased their composite scores by five or more points, four saw their scores go from below 50 percent to above 50 percent. Union Hill Elementary, Foust Elementary, Wiley Elementary and Oak Hill Elementary each posted gains of nine percentage points or more.

Oak Hill, which three years ago had one of the lowest performance composites in the state, made the largest gains of the district. Oak Hill's scores brought its performance composite from 45.8 percent to 65.2 percent, an increase of 19.4 percentage points. The school also had an impressive year in 2009-10, with a gain of 16.1 percentage points.

The percent proficient on EOGs was only 29.7 percent when Oak Hill was selected for a $2.9 million School Improvement Grant and made drastic reforms under the turnaround model, which required the district to replace the principal and at least half of the school's staff. Since 2008-09, Oak Hill has improved its reading scores by 23.7 percentage points, its math scores by 40.4 points and its science scores by 58.3 points.

"These results show what you can accomplish when you set high expectations, not only for students but for everyone in the building," said Principal Patrice Faison. "The Western Region office and the district's academic services departments provided constant support throughout the year. They helped our teachers make sure they had the skills and resources needed to make the most out of their lessons.

"We worked closely with parents to make them active partners in the process," she said. "Volunteers and business partners also played a critical role serving as tutors, reading buddies and donating supplies. After our first year of the School Improvement Grant, we're very proud of the way our students performed."

Students in grades three through eight take EOG tests in reading, math and science and have the opportunity to retest if needed. GCS gained 1 percentage point on EOG tests for a total performance composite of 74 percent. Proficiency increased by 0.7 percentage points for reading to 68.2 percent, 0.1 points for math to 81.7 percent and 4.8 points for science to 68.1 percent.

EOC tests are given to middle and high school students in seven subject areas. GCS gained 0.9 percentage points on EOC tests for a performance composite of 75.1 percent. Proficiency increased in algebra 1, English and civics and economics, while scores decreased slightly in biology, U.S. history and algebra 2. Scores remained the same for physical science.

As outlined in the Strategic Plan 2012, the district's goal is for 81 percent of students to be proficient on EOG reading tests and 88 percent of students to be proficient on EOG math tests. In addition, the district wants 74 percent of students in fifth grade and 77 percent of students in eighth grade proficient on the science EOG. Another goal in the strategic plan is for 89 percent of students to be proficient on all EOC tests. There are interim annual goals for each of the 2012 goals.

"While substantial gains have been made in many areas, particularly since the 2007-08 school year, we must significantly accelerate our progress to reach our 2012 academic achievement goals," said Green. "We must increase the number of students who are proficient on EOG reading and continue to challenge students to excel in math. We also need to continue our work on addressing achievement gaps to prepare our students for higher education and future careers."