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Bertie Schools above average on AYP

WINDSOR – More than half of the 10 educational facilities within the Bertie County Public School (BCPS) system met the requirements of the recently released AYP (Adequate Yearly Progress) report.

While that comes as good news to BCPS officials, especially considering the reports from surrounding counties, newly hired Superintendent Dr. Nettie Collins-Hart knows there's ample room for improvement.

"We're pleased to remain at or near the top when compared to the other school systems in our area, but the test scores show we still have a lot of work to do," Dr. Collins-Hart said.

As a whole, the 10 public schools in the county met 116 of the 126 target goals of AYP. That left Bertie with a 92.1 percent success rate, the highest among the four Roanoke-Chowan area counties. Northampton County (121-of-134; 90.2 percent), Gates County (80-of-89; 89.8 percent) and Hertford County (62-of-91; 68.1 percent) were ranked behind Bertie.

However, when ranking BCPS against the 114 school systems statewide, the county's AYP results were listed in the 78th position.

Dr. Collins-Hart said one of her goals is to place BCPS among the state's elite systems.

"As the new superintendent, I am looking forward to working with the students, staff and parents in making Bertie County schools one of the top achieving school systems in the state," she stressed. "We, as administrators, faculty and staff, will work together to achieve this goal."

AYP is defined as a series of performance targets that school districts must achieve each year to meet the requirements of the federally-mandated "No Child Left Behind" act. In North Carolina, AYP standards are measured in reading/language arts and math assessment. Targets are set within 10 subgroups of students n the school as a whole (all students), American Indian, Asian, Black, Hispanic, Multi-Racial and White. Those targets also include students that come from economically disadvantaged homes as well as students listed as limited English proficient or ones with disabilities.

In order for a school to earn AYP status, the students must meet each of the target goals. If only one target is missed, no AYP status is awarded.

The following is a school-by-school breakdown of the AYP numbers within BCPS:

Askewville Elementary n made AYP (met 11-of-11 target goals). 87.8 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

Aulander Elementary n made AYP (met 13-of-13 target goals). 76.7 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

C.G. White Middle School n made AYP (met 13-of-13 target goals). 79.6 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

Colerain Elementary n made AYP (met 13-of-13 target goals). 72.6 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

Bertie High School n made AYP (met 15-of-15 target goals). 36.4 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

J.P. Law Elementary School n made AYP (met 7-of-7 target goals). 80.0 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

Serendipity School n failed to meet AYP (met 2-of-3 target goals). 71.4 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

Southwestern Middle School n failed to meet AYP (met 17-of-21 target goals). 74.4 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

West Bertie Elementary School n failed to meet AYP (met 15-of-17 target goals). 73.0 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

Windsor Elementary School n failed to meet AYP (met 10-of-13 target goals). 69.7 percent of all students tested were proficient at or above grade level.

As far as the state's "ABC's of Education" accountability model are concerned, BCPS saw a 50-50 split in those results.

Five schools were signaled out by the state for their ABC status. Two of those five were praised for their overall efforts n J.P. Law Elementary (a School of Distinction with High Growth) and Askewville Elementary (a School of Distinction with Expected Growth).

The three others receiving "ABC" recognition were Windsor Elementary (a school of Progress with Expected Growth), Serendipity (Expected Growth) and Bertie High School (a Priority School with Expected Growth).

The other half of BCPS n Southwestern Middle, C.G. White Middle, Aulander Elementary, Colerain Elementary and West Bertie Elementary n received no recognition.

BCPS students returned to the classroom on Thursday of this week where a new era began under a new superintendent, one hoping for a bright future for the school system.