GCS releases academic scores for 2018-19 school year

GCS releases academic scores for 2018-19 school year

SNOW HILL — Greene County Schools posted the same performance grades as last year, but showed an increase in overall proficiency in end-of-year results revealed Monday evening.

Three schools either met or excelled performance growth — Greene Early College, Greene Central High School and Greene County Intermediate School.

The results, however, could be misleading due to the structure of the GCS system. Snow Hill Primary is kindergarten through first grade, West Greene has second and third-grade students and GCIS houses fourth and fifth-graders. If all five grades were merged into one traditional school, their EOYs would have a much different look.

"It's like the tortoise and the hare," said Dr. Patrick Miller, superintendent of GCS. "We're like the tortoise, slow and steady in making progress."

The schools showed some gains in proficiency across content areas in different grade levels.

Dr. Frank Creech, chief academic officer for GCS, stressed there are other factors that don't appear in the performance grades that the county uses and the North Carolina State Board of Education (NCSBOE) recognizes as indicators of proficiency in third grade.

More than 70 percent of third-graders met or surpassed reading proficiency targets on one or more measures approved by the NCSBOE. Skills in reading and math increased among third through eighth-graders from 2017-18. Los Puentes — a two-way immersion language program — and STEM each continued to produce higher-than-average gains.

The graduation rate for the high school rocketed to 95 percent.

Greene Early College and GCHS students combined to complete more than 1,200 college courses in 2017-18. According to Creech, those students earned scholarship money of nearly $350,000 to help cover the cost of tuition and books.

"Even though we got some mixed results with the progress that we've made, we've been hard at work over the past summer to address some areas where we need to improve," Creech said.

Each school has implemented several strategies to help improve test scores.

While he gave a bullet-point presentation, Creech highlighted the American College Test (ACT) Success course at Greene Central. The course is not just about test-taking strategies, but designed to help students prepare for the first administration of the ACT with built-in support on college applications and essays.

"We want to think outside the box," Creech said.

In other Board news:

- The Board approved the GCHS Wilderness Explorers' request to attend a pair of trips to Goose Creek State Park in Washington and Cliffs of the Neuse State Park in Seven Springs. The students have requested the opportunity to work on a project that involves learning about environmental justice and studying science concepts by exploring each element through camping.

- In a closed session, the Board approved one resignation, four new hires, four additions to the substitute teacher's list and a substitute to the cafeteria worker's list.

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