Speaking of how the CRCT is graded, the Georgia Department of Education released system-wide data today on the 2012 scores.
The highest-scoring metro systems were Fayette, Forsyth and Decatur City, all of which are high-performing systems with relatively low poverty rates.
In terms of low-income students, as measured by students eligible for free/reduced lunches on the most recent state report cards:
In comparison, consider that Clayton, one of the low performing systems, has 82 percent of its students qualifying for free/reduced lunch. The state average is 57 percent. In Atlanta, 76 percent of students are low-income.
Students in Fayette, Forsyth and Decatur City school systems outperformed their metro-area peers on 2012 state exams, according to scores released Thursday.
In these counties, students excelled in reading and math while results showed that students in Clayton, DeKalb and Atlanta City trailed in tested subjects.
The Criterion-Referenced Competency Test is given annually to public school students in grades three through eighth, and measures whether students are testing on grade level in English/language arts, social studies, reading, math and science. The test will be deemphasized in the coming years as Georgia moves away from federal No Child Left Behind accountability measures to a new accountability system of its own.
Since 2000, the exams were critical in determining whether schools met annual academic goals, known as adequate yearly progress or AYP. Schools and districts that didn’t meet goals, which increased every year, were subject to sanctions under state and federal law.
Soon, the state will introduce a new index system that will assign each school a numerical rating from one to 100, and CRCT esults will be one of several factors that make up a school’s rating.
State data released earlier this month showed Georgia students overall improved on the exam for the third year in a row. English/language arts, social studies and reading results increased this year, while math and science scores remained flat or dropped slightly. School-level CRCT data is not expected to be released until mid-July.
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog