D45 maintains ‘average’ rating in 2014

After barely missing the ‘C' grade they needed to meet the state's standards on the federal report card, Barnwell District 45 met the standards of the state report card.
The district received an ‘average' absolute rating on the 2014 state report card, which is the same as 2013. Twelve other districts with students like District 45 also earned ‘average', though 12 were either ‘good' or ‘excellent'. Their growth rating decreased slightly from ‘excellent' to ‘good', but they are still exceeding the standards for progress.
They received a ‘C' on their federal report card, but were only less than two points away from meeting the state's expectation of a 70 or above.
"As a district, we have set a strong foundation through our focused work in recent years, and we must continue with a sense of urgency across the school district to make continuous improvement. We feel our current improvement strategies will help us accomplish our goals in Barnwell 45 and we strive to see continued increases in student achievement," said Superintendent Jay Grissom in a press release.
Barnwell Primary School
While the primary school's absolute rating remained ‘average', they saw "substantial growth in 2013, and this trend continued this year with an increased growth rating from ‘average' to ‘good'," said Grissom.
A majority of elementary schools with students like Barnwell Primary were also rated ‘average' - 96 to be exact. Five schools were rated below them while 37 had a higher rating.
In four of the five subject areas of the PASS test, Barnwell Primary students outscored the state and schools with students like theirs in the exemplary category. Social studies was the only subject they did not, according to the report card.
They received a ‘B' on their federal report card.
Barnwell Elementary School
The elementary school was the only District 45 school to see a drop on their state report card.
Barnwell Elementary's absolute rating went from ‘average' in 2013 to ‘below average' this year. Their growth rating also fell from ‘average' to ‘below average'.
Most schools with students similar to BES had a higher absolute rating. Five other schools also earned a ‘below average' rating, though one was rated lower with ‘at-risk'. The other 130 schools had an ‘average' or higher rating.
Though they came close in several subjects, they did not outscore the state average in the met category on the PASS test.
"Although there were setbacks at Barnwell Elementary, we have identified and targeted specific areas crucial to overall improvement. We currently have two afterschool programs operating at Barnwell Elementary targeting areas for improvement," said Grissom.
They received a ‘D' on their federal report card.
Upper schools
The middle and high schools each increased their absolute ratings by one category.
Guinyard-Butler Middle School went from a ‘below average' absolute rating to ‘average' in 2014. They also improved their growth rating from ‘average' to ‘excellent'. Fifty other schools with students similar to GBMS also earned ‘average', while seven others had a lesser rating and only three were higher.
Barnwell High School went from an ‘average' absolute rating and ‘at-risk' growth rating to ‘good' on both in 2014. Most high schools with students similar to BHS also earned a ‘good' rating or higher, though 10 were ‘average' or lower.
"Both of these ratings showed increases from the previous year. Overall, there is an increase in student achievement in all core curricular areas," said Grissom.
The middle school's science scores on the PASS test surpassed the state average in the exemplary category. The school also had 100 percent of students who took end of course tests pass with a 70 or above, surpassing the average of middle schools with similar students.
"In the past two years, the Barnwell High School has seen an almost 20 percent increase of students graduating on time, from 66 percent in 2012 to 85.7 percent in 2014," said Grissom.
On the federal report card, the middle school earned a ‘D' and the high school had a ‘B'.