By Anna-Marie Menhenott
ST. LUCIE COUNTY -- St. Lucie County shared the good news that local high school performance rates are continuing to improve.
"St. Lucie Public Schools have become more goal-focused in the area of student performance," said Genelle Yost, superintendent. "The goal-focused implementation process is designed to help schools evaluate current functioning and identify research-based interventions to address targets and goals. Positive changes are documented within our detailed results preliminarily released by the DOE this morning."
Fort Pierce Central earned an A with 1131 points (71 percent) of all available points.
LPA continued its high performance with an A earned with 1,315 points (77 percent of available points). LPA has maintained an accountability grade of "A" since 2002.
Treasure Coast at 1,064 points earned the points for an A. This represents a strong record of success; however, they were penalized due to a one-year decline in the at-risk graduation rate. This particular penalty prevents a school from earning an A, regardless of points earned.
St Lucie West Centennial earned a strong B this year with 1,014 points. Progress was steady for Centennial in Assessment percent as well as most of the High School components. However, Regular and At-Risk Graduation Rates were down slightly in both the 4-yr and the 5-yr rates. This accounted for a small decline in points earned. In addition, these small declines made SLWCHS ineligible for bonus points which contributed to their strong performance last year.
Port St. Lucie earned a C with 944 grade points. This represents consistent performance across the last two years.
Fort Pierce Westwood earned a D with 865 points this year, five points from a C. This represents a strong performance. Postsecondary Readiness in Reading improved by 21 points (43 total points in 2012 and 64 points in 2013). The At-Risk Graduation Rate for 2013 improved by 14 points. Learning gains in Reading and Math for the lowest 25 percent have been documented for 2013.
Mosaic, in their first year with an assigned grade, obtained an overall 4-year graduation rate of 73 percent and this score is not calculated into their accountability grade due to small cell sizes. Students reached 59 percent proficiency in Reading (second highest percentage in the district behind LPA). Overall, Mosaic recognizes that students have opportunities to grow in technical math and science. This will be a focus goal for the future.
Mosaic was recorded with an F. They were hampered because they did not have sufficient data to earn points for the High School Components even where performance was high, like graduation rate. Their grade next year will be much better reflection of students' proficiency and growth. This early low grade is based only on the FCAT components. In prior years, small and new schools were somewhat protected during their first year(s) with very small numbers of students across categories because the minimum cell size to count for School Grades was 30. This is the first year that the DOE reduced the cell size to 10 students in each category. Due to their very small cell sizes in several places, they had difficulty accumulating adequate points across all categories, and they were not given credit for any of the high school components due to small cell size.
No schools were penalized for lack of learning gains among lowest performing students and no school had to be supported by the rule limiting grade drops to one letter grade.
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