September 13, 2012

School aiming for 12-straight with AYP

By Suzanne Werre, BHG News Service

If the teachers at the Underwood School ever doubt what a good job they are doing, all they need to do is walk into the elementary teachers’ lounge, where they will see a sign that says, “2012--AYP—Yes; 11 years – enough said!” That little sign says a lot for the teachers and staff, who for 11 straight years, since its inception, have reached the AYP (Adequate Yearly progress) standards set by the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction as part of the national No Child Left Behind policy. Elementary Principal Barb Robinson and Secondary Principal Lee Weisgarber hope to make this the 12th straight year, even if the state decides to waive the AYP standards. Whether or not the state is still going by AYP standards, the Underwood School will continue to strive to improve every year, they agree. Both administrators were quick to point out that the school’s staff and school board have worked hard to keep up with the evermore demanding AYP standards, which back in 2001-2004 required just over 65 percent of the fourth-grade students to be proficient in reading, but now requires just over 91 percent of the fourth-graders to be proficient in reading. Just over 61 percent of the eighth graders back in 2001-2004 were required to be proficient in reading to meet AYP, while now the requirement is just over 90 percent. (To clarify, 90 percent of the students must meet proficiency guidelines for the school to meet AYP requirements – they do not all need to get 90 percent on their grades.) Reading and math are the two subjects used to determine adequate yearly progress.

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