State releases AYP results: Fewer schools make it as bar was raised. Did your school?

Update: The AJC database on AYP is now up.

From DOE:

The Georgia Department of Education today released the initial Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) report, which is the formula used to determine if schools are meeting expectations under the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). The final AYP report will be released in the fall and will include summer retest scores, summer graduates and appeals. Fewer Georgia schools made AYP this year due to the academic bar being raised in all four categories (Reading/Language Arts CRCT Grades 3-8, Math CRCT Grades 3-8, English/Language Arts Georgia High School Graduation Test, Math Georgia High School Graduation Test). The graduation rate that high schools must meet also increased this year to 85%.

The percentage of all schools making AYP in 2011 is 63.2%, compared to 71% in 2010. The percentage of schools falling into “Needs Improvement” (NI) status this year is 17.5%, compared to 15.4% last year. “We have many great schools in the state providing a high-quality education to all students,” said State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge. “But the rate at which the academic bar and the graduation rate requirement increased this year prevented more schools from making AYP. We knew we were up against the proverbial wall because this bar increases each year, and it appears that we have begun to hit it.”

NCLB consists of three parts — test participation, academic achievement and another statistic, called a “second indicator.” The academic goals continue to rise every few years toward a goal of 100% proficiency for all students by 2014. All students at a school, as well as any qualifying subgroup of students, must meet goals in all three categories in order for the school to make AYP. Schools that do not make AYP for two consecutive years in the same subject are placed in Needs Improvement status and face escalating consequences.

Today’s AYP release sheds more light on the need for Congress to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) – No Child Left Behind. Though some flexibility has been granted to the state, it has been insufficient to overcome the original accountability benchmarks established by Congress in 2001.

“The goal of 100% proficiency for all of our students by 2014 is well meaning,” said Superintendent Barge, “but because there are so many variables in the lives of children that schools cannot control, the likelihood of achieving this goal is slim.”

Superintendent Barge added, “There is so much more to a school’s and a child’s progress than one test score at a single point in time.”

Graduation Rate

The state’s initial 2011 graduation rate is 79.5%. That is down slightly from the initial 2010 graduation rate of 79.9%.  “I believe this decrease in the graduation rate highlights the need for more relevance in a 21st century high school,” Superintendent Barge said. “As long as students do not see the connection between school and possibilities after high school, some will continue to drop out. The career pathways that all students will have beginning Fall 2012 will help students see the relevance in school.”

Graduation rate must be used as a “second indicator” for all high schools and the bar was raised this year. In order to make AYP, a high school had to have a graduation rate of 85% or higher, up from 80% last year. If a school did not make that goal, they could use a “second look” which means:

- Having a graduation rate that averaged 85% or higher over the past three years OR

- Having a graduation rate of at least 60% the previous year (2010) and showing a 10% improvement in the rate this year.

This year, all states will be required to calculate a graduation rate based on the “Cohort” formula. Georgia will release the Cohort graduation rate later this fall with the state’s Report Card.

School Turnaround Efforts

Accountability and support for struggling schools go hand-in-hand. Georgia’s support for low achieving and struggling schools is a critical function of the GaDOE’s school improvement efforts. The Office of School Improvement and Race to the Top’s Office of School Turnaround partner with Regional Education Service Agencies (RESAs) to support schools that are identified as Needs Improvement 1-4. School Improvement Specialists are assigned to schools to work directly with the leadership teams to review data, model classroom instruction, and monitor the implementation of the school improvement plan. School Improvement also provides Title I grants to those schools to further support the strategies to address the needs of struggling students. In addition, training and professional development are provided for key staff and leadership at each school.

The Race to the Top Office of School Turnaround works with schools that are identified as Needs Improvement 5 or more. Schools identified as NI 5 or more are designated as State-Directed and must enter into a contract for improvement. Additionally, NI 5 or more schools receive a Title I School Improvement Grant to fund training, professional learning, and extended learning time for the school and for struggling students.


Carroll County Villa Rica Middle

Clayton County Pointe South Middle School

Coffee County Coffee Middle School

Chatham County Groves High School*

Crisp County Crisp County Middle School

Douglas County Stewart Middle School

Glynn County Burroughs-Molette Elementary School

Gordon County Sonoraville East Middle School

Jasper County Jasper County Middle School

Johnson County Johnson County Middle School

Lanier County Lanier County Elementary School

Lanier County Lanier County Elementary School

Newton County Indian Creek Middle School

Paulding County South Paulding Middle School

Seminole County Seminole County Middle/High School

Stewart County Stewart County High School

Valdosta City Newbern Middle School

* This school received a School Improvement Grant. As a result, it is no longer in Needs Improvement status.


Banks County

Clay County

Clinch County

Echols County

Fayette County

Lee County

Long County

Lumpkin County

Marion County

Miller County

Mitchell County

Oconee County

Rabun County

Schley County

Stephens County

Stewart County

Towns County

Ware County

Webster County

Bremen City

Chickamauga City

Decatur City

Jefferson City

Scholars Academy


Ivy Prep

Fulton Leadership Academy

Museum School Avondale Estates

Coweta Charter Academy

Trion City

State Schools – Georgia Academy for the Blind

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

172 comments Add your comment


July 21st, 2011
2:39 pm

So Ivy Prep made AYP?


July 21st, 2011
2:41 pm

Let’s get ready for more erasures.


July 21st, 2011
2:44 pm

Just goes to show how Ivy Prep Academy should remain as a charter school with Full Funding!


July 21st, 2011
2:44 pm

And as I stated earlier. At some point you will have NO public schools making AYP. It is nearly impossible to get every child to pass their tests. An impossibility. And as the lunatic benchmarks continue to rise you will find more and more schools slipping away. What are the going to do, close down the entire educational system across the country?

Local Teacher

July 21st, 2011
2:47 pm

It will only get worse. The AYP goals increase each year as resources dwindle while class sizes increase as well. Not to mention the added pressure that teachers at Race to the Top schools will face this year that have salaries tied to student performance. If people think APS will be alone as the only Georgia School District with a cheating scandal, those people are fooling themselves.


July 21st, 2011
2:51 pm

The excuses begin and the scapegoating has started. Shameful.


July 21st, 2011
2:52 pm

Demographics demographics demographics


July 21st, 2011
2:54 pm

100% of kids meeting 100% of goals by 2014. That’s kind of like legislating that everyone gets health insurance, right?


July 21st, 2011
2:57 pm

Screw it all, it’s hopeless. Let’s just surrender to China now.


July 21st, 2011
2:59 pm

I just read my school’s AYP report. What a load of crap. First they only counted the 8th graders, not the 6th and 7th graders for testing. They didn’t county any of our white kids or hispanic kids scores, so basically they only counted the black kids who tested. My school has 111 white kids out of 800 and NONE of them counted for my school. On my school’s second indicator…attendance they didn’t make it because too many kids were out for more than 15 days. How is the responsibility of the school? If the CDC and the Dept. of Labor and the Federal Government tell workers to stay home when your sick so you don’t get the rest of the company sick why is this not the same for kids and schools? How do I control a parent who takes their kid out of school every day for three weeks and we can never get in touch with them?

This is the most stupidest thing….Please, someone tell me again why I teach in this state?


July 21st, 2011
3:02 pm

I just checked my school system’s info. We did not meet AYP because 36 kids marked as Students with Disabilities (SWD) out of a school of 875 students did not pass the math portion. That is .04% of the students at our school. I know we will focus on SWD to improve our school as we should, but what is the justification of labeling an entire school as failing on .04% of the student population? This is the flaw of NCLB. I would love to see if those 36 kids actually had gains on their scores, but weren’t strong enough to pass, or how close they were to passing. NCLB doesn’t factor that in.


July 21st, 2011
3:04 pm

oh_please hit the mark perfectly. The only thing the CRCT and AYP measure is the socioeconomic status of a school’s catchment area. Of course, we already spend plenty on the census to tell us exactly the same thing. . . .


July 21st, 2011
3:05 pm

If attendance is now the responsibility of the school and not the parent then why is this a state law:

§ 20-2-690.1. Mandatory education for children between ages six and 16
(a) Mandatory attendance in a public school, private school, or home school program shall be required for children between their sixth and sixteenth birthdays. Such mandatory attendance shall not be required where the child has successfully completed all requirements for a high school diploma.

(b) Every parent, guardian, or other person residing within this state having control or charge of any child or children during the ages of mandatory attendance as required in subsection (a) of this Code section shall enroll and send such child or children to a public school, (c) Any parent, guardian, or other person residing in this state who has control or charge of a child or children and who shall violate this Code section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor

The law says the attendance of a school is the responsibility of the parents. These AYP reports violate or at least don’t match with the state law. Again, why do I teach here?

James in Athens

July 21st, 2011
3:05 pm

Sorry but Ivy Prep and other charter schools
should get no $$ from State of Ga. You want a Charter
School you pay for them just
like kids going to Marist, Blessed Trinty and
other private schools… APS are a joke….
We will never have 100% graduation in the US because
you have not so smart people having kids- Just a fact!

WE lost our way

July 21st, 2011
3:06 pm

Only one large school district in metro Atlanta where all schools made AYP–Fayette County.Also,please look at the counties of Mitchell,Miller,Schley,Clay,Lee,Stewart and Webster.They are all located in SW Georgia.All rural areas in poor economic conditions.It really says something when schools in these locations make the all AYP list.


July 21st, 2011
3:11 pm


Clay County has 88 kids in its middle school! I taught in my four classes 92 students!
Miller county has 256 kids in its middle school. We had 300 kids in the 8th grade in my school.

It's genetics

July 21st, 2011
3:11 pm

Think…….Dumb parents raising dumb kids in school systems run by meglomanic administrators.

Write Your Board Members

July 21st, 2011
3:13 pm


Did they get the required pass rate for the math GHSGT lowered? Do you know?

Ivy Prep Parent

July 21st, 2011
3:16 pm

This is for James in Athens, seems as though you don’t know the difference between a Charter School and a Private School. Use a dictionary and compare the difference. Ivy Prep ia a A+ middle school which deserves and should receive full state funding.

So. West GA Native

July 21st, 2011
3:16 pm

Way to go Mitchell county!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

People in the city love talking about people from the country. As you can see from the AYP results, the country kids take their education more seriously. They don’t spend all day playing video games……yahhhhhhhooooooooo

fire it up

July 21st, 2011
3:16 pm

teach to the test! Forget innovative methods of teaching, creativity in educational instruction—junk that! Teach to the CRT! Make sure students know the details like who is andrew lloyd webber! That’s important!!!!!!!


July 21st, 2011
3:20 pm

huh? so if you’re schools suck, then you can’t do anything about it but complain? no charter schools for you!!
Oh, wait. Move. Right…or let them eat cake.
Sounds great, james in athens.

Jerry Eads

July 21st, 2011
3:21 pm

As I’ve noted here before, I may have been the first in Georgia to read the entire law, such as it is, in ‘01. While I am a statistician, it didn’t take a one to figure out that 100% of the schools would fail by 2014, as the law requried 100% proficiency, regardless of special education, poverty, lead poisoning, premature birth, single parent families, homelessness, and the list goes on (yes, as a few people started to realize the law was a complete con job — there were fudge factors allowed but infinitely short of being fair, reasonable or, for that matter, sane). Even Teddy Kennedy bought in, but only because he got free Alaska vacations for kids in Massachussetts (Yes, I’m serious, it’s in the law). Even he was apparently too stupid to understand the law’s consequences – or was perhaps in favor of them.

NCLB has been the single most effective mechanism to undermine and eliminate public education in public schooling’s relatively brief history. The law, effectively, requires that every school get every kid taller than 5′6″ by 2014. We started at 4′4″. The requirement goes up by an inch each year. If ANY kid is under 5′6″ by 2014 in a school, that ENTIRE school FAILS. Period. No exceptions.

SO, ye who are gullible enough to think the law reasonable (and of course you’ve never read the first thing about it), if you’re less than 6′ as an adult, and I require you to be 6′+ by 2014, whatcha gonna do? The rack? ALL levels of intelligence are helped by good teaching, but the student with an IQ of 85 simply doesn’t get to think about going to MIT like the kid with an IQ of 145. Just is. NCLB – and AYP – require us to take all our resources and put them into the kid with the 85 IQ, and totally abandon the kid who WILL be one of the future leaders of the country. Your kid, maybe. That’s how we’re playing this out with AYP. Is that what you want?


July 21st, 2011
3:25 pm

Mr. Eads: i don’t really know anyone who likes the law. people have been complaining about it for years. but nothing’s being done. no one knows how to make changes, and the federal govt is learning that micromanaging the schools isn’t working. *sigh*. but they still want their control. how will they control constituents if they don’t control funding and education?

James in Athens

July 21st, 2011
3:25 pm

Hey all you Ivy Prep Charter School folks,
You want you pay for it is all I am saying…
State has enough $$ problems… Sorry you live
in Atlanta but that is your choice…


July 21st, 2011
3:26 pm

I need to file a Civil Rights lawsuit on behalf of my white and hispanic kids who scores did not count. Yet their school and their education is effected; it may be deprived of funds, lose teachers, etc. They are being denied an opportunity to improve their own educational situation on the basis of their race.

42 U.S.C. § 2000d No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race,
color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be
denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any
program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Hey Maureen….do you know a good civil rights lawyer?

Dekalb taxpayer

July 21st, 2011
3:30 pm

My high school didn’t make AYP. What a relief.

Write Your Board Members

July 21st, 2011
3:32 pm

Dunwoody Mom

July 21st, 2011
3:35 pm

A better question is than AYP – did you student scores increase?

@DeKalb Taxpayer….I understand.

Southland Bound

July 21st, 2011
3:36 pm

Sumter county sucked as usual. So much for the empty slogan:

“Sumter County Schools will become one of the highest-achieving rural school districts in Georgia”

– Dr. R.G. Brooks

Just A Teacher

July 21st, 2011
3:38 pm

Yes, as did every school in our system, and, unlike some systems in metro Atlanta, we didn’t cheat. We taught! Fayette rocks!


July 21st, 2011
3:39 pm

I still don’t understand how they are calculating AYP for the middle schools. If all of them have to pass the CRCT by 2014, and over 33% of them failed just in Math this year, how is the school still making AYP? I don’t get it.

What I do know is that those students who fail will be up at the high school bringing our scores down next year.

Teaching children first PLEASE

July 21st, 2011
3:40 pm

Ok, couldn’t they have at least published APS results and stated with an * that the results are pending verification or authenticity or something????? Also, couldn’t they have published APS high schools’ results since they aren’t part of CRCT???


July 21st, 2011
3:44 pm

That’s the point, the schools aren’t going to make AYP, even those schools that made AYP this year because 98% of them passed, at some point that 98% is not going to be good enough and they will be in the same boat with the rest of us. I would like to know if ANY school ANY where in Georgia with at least 100 students passed both reading and math with 100%. I betta its no one or a darn few.

cobb mom of 4

July 21st, 2011
3:46 pm

How about this….have your Senators and Congressmen give the removal of NCLB the same priority and enthusiasm they give to removing President Obama. They’ve shown that they can be relentless when they have a common goal. Have them make this their goal.


July 21st, 2011
3:48 pm

In my county the slogan is- ” Investing in futures”- the scary part is they don’t say WHOSE futures they’re investing in… but from the looks of central office and administrative salaries…well, enough said!


July 21st, 2011
3:53 pm

As a physical scientist, I always encounter a problem which requires good and sound assumptions if one has to make any meaningful headway. Any wrong assumption made would lead to answers that seem fit to that assumption but are all wrong.
Nobody knows who wrote the NCLB law. That person(s0 might be ashamed of themselves now. Statistically it is impossible attain 100% more especially when you are doing with human beings with different talents, gifts and frailties.

NCLB has failed miserably and needs to be scrapped. A new a philosophy of education should be focused on Human development vis-a-vis their natural skills and abilities. There are of course few exceptions. The progress of the child not be measured by some test giver designing a test to fool the child. Most of the test questions are formulated out of the ordinary. For example may be in the classroom a teacher may teach finding the average (mean) of a set of numbers then in the exam the question it was put obscurely put without the student understanding the content of the question.

There are so many factors that contribute to student’s failure. One of which is the level and language of the textbook the students use. The standardized tests is not set to differentiate between smart, smart but careless, and not smart at all. The tests only looks for smart and not smart. This is very common with Mathematics.
Solve the equation 3X + 7 = -8.
A good student would solve it as 3x = -7 -8
which gives 3x = -15 Therefore x = -5.
A smart but careless student would answer it as 3x = -1 Therefore x = -1/3. In both cases the second step is correct but upon simplification the student made an error.
These things are very common.

Our kids are not all that stupid. The exam are designed to make policy makers panic, politicians taking irrational decisions and the examining board make more money because there would be the demand for more testing.


July 21st, 2011
3:53 pm

Our Senators and Congressmen are too busy right now yelling at each other and sending hate email to each other.

Plus do you really expect a Senator, who is running for president, to understand education and educational policy when she thinks that John Quincy Adams was a founding father who fought against slavery? Do you trust your child’s education to that woman?

When you get on a plane, do you tell the pilot how to fly it. When you get surgery do you tell your surgeon how to perform the operation? Do you tell the football coach how to run practice and plays? Heck, do you tell your garbage man how to pick up your garbage.

So why do we allow lay people with no experience in education dictate education policy and tell us how our schools should be run. We have been doing this for years, and it hasn’t helped one bit. Yeah, we really care about kids as a nation, or state or community. Its all a lie…

Write Your Board Members

July 21st, 2011
3:57 pm

Fayette County has the lowest percentage of FRL students in the state.

While it is awesome for them, they simply don’t face the same challenges as many school systems in GA.


July 21st, 2011
4:00 pm

Mainstreaming students with IEPs will continue to result in schools not making AYP. Regular ed. elementary teachers are using resources and instructional time to modify and give the students with IEPs one on one attention. If a student has an IEP put the student in a class, with a special ed. teacher, so they can receive the instruction and attention their disability requires. Then the regular ed. teacher can put more resources and instructional time into the rest of the 29 students who have the potential to meet or exceed grade level standards.


July 21st, 2011
4:03 pm

The superintendent is absolutely correct, schools are being responsible for issues they cannot control that the 100% benchmark by 2014 will never happen. Getting to 100% is one thing…staying there each year is another!!

This is where the argument about the individual growth model comes into play. It is much more important to see where a student was in August and where he ended up in May. This assessment tool would be much more valuable to teachers and schools.

In terms of AYP, do right by the students and let the chips fall where they may!


July 21st, 2011
4:05 pm

I’m not trying to pick on these kids. Someone in state education department explain to me the report for the Georgia School for the Deaf.

First, they have a total of 31 students. 16 of them are white, there are no other figures for the other races. So what happened to those 15 kids, they don’t exist? They don’t show up anywhere.

ok..They did NOT meet their indicator for Students With Disabilities. HUH? You need to be hearing disabled in at least one ear to enroll correct? These poor kids didn’t make AYP.

So this school has incomplete and missing data, they didn’t make AYP and we are supposed to just accept it.


July 21st, 2011
4:09 pm

In Terms of AYP, the state is telling the world, only teach to those kids who scores will actually count. If you don’t have enough black kids and their schools won’t count…don’t teach them. That is EXACTLY what the state is saying.

Avid Learner

July 21st, 2011
4:13 pm

Way to go Ivy Prep and Head School Master Gilbert! Maybe DOE should rely on your expertise to help APS and other school systems that are struggling to make AYP. Way to go Georgia School for the Blind! So much talent in these two schools.


July 21st, 2011
4:16 pm

@edteach: At the Education Finance Committee meeting in June, the superintendent of Forsyth County schools reported that federal funding (SpEd) represented one percent of the school system’s revenues and twenty-five percent of the system’s expenses were due to federal mandates. Special ed expenses are a major issue along with the system’s catering to each and every expectation of SpEd parents – purportedly to avoid lawsuits.

@Eads – Exactly on point: several years ago it was obvious NCLB meant lots of kids standing around and waiting so no one was left. As the rest of the first world has invested more highly in the >125 and we pour resources (we don’t have) into the <85. The ONLY federal funding for gifted education is Javits grants for research in gifted education. Maybe YOU can convince others of this; everywhere I go it seems there are folks who will argue with me that "the gifted kids get all the special ed money." Puh-lease; gifted kids are getting less and less – because many of them could pass that CRCT or GHSGT when they walk in the door the first day of school.


July 21st, 2011
4:26 pm

“My” school has made it every year till this year. Every year. Given our heavy sped population and the way we are doing ESOL now (all push in), I don’t think we will ever make it again.


July 21st, 2011
4:36 pm

At the risk of people misreading this for the 2nd time today–
For schools not making AYP the options are: “School must offer either Public School Choice or Supplemental Education Services (Tutoring). The school system will notify parents regarding which option will be offered.”
Why is it so many metro systems seem ONLY to opt for Choice, when it certainly appears that is becoming more and more problematic and less and less effective?


July 21st, 2011
4:44 pm

We finally have a superintendent that understands the impossible…I am so tired of people who have never been in the classroom or in a classroom for the last 20 years telling me how to teach! I spend 16 hours/7 days every week during the school year preparing and trying to reinvent the wheel to help my students, who have no support at home, to understand middle school math concepts that have almost no background in math and cannot even read! I would love for one of the higher ups to come and spend a month in my classroom this year and show me how!!! Oh, you have no time for such trivial matters…and I am the one making the BIG $$$…PL-Ease!!!

This is my last year trying to make a difference, and I will try as hard as I have the other 30+ years…I love my students not the unreal demands that are put on them!!! Please remember that our children are not assembly lines!!!

Write Your Board Members

July 21st, 2011
4:45 pm


Once you reach a certain number of years in NI, you have to offer choice. DeKalb has a wiaver from the feds which allows them to delay the choice option from year 2 of not making AYP to year 3.

The parents have the either or option.


July 21st, 2011
5:16 pm

What do you expect?

A decade’s worth of austerity cuts and teacher bashing, shorter school years, pay cuts and furloughs are simply not the recipe for decent education – nor do they reflect a society that values education, it’s children, or it’s future.

Wanna give an ‘F’ to somebody? Give it to Sonny and the long line of white trash that put him in office.