HCPS scores high on ABC Growth Status

Published 10:37 am Saturday, July 10, 2010

WINTON – It was news that was well-received.

In his report earlier this week to the Hertford County Board of Commissioners, Dr. John Fahey, Superintendent of the county’s public school system, shared the results of the 2009-10 ABC Growth Status, an accountability model used across the state by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction to measure educational growth in core subjects.

Dr. Fahey revealed that Hertford County Schools exceeded expectations by being rated overall in the High Growth categories of End of Course (EOC) testing and Composite scores.

Fahey noted that both Ahoskie Elementary School and Bearfield Primary School met expected growth across the board (Math, Reading, End of Grade and Composite). Hertford County Middle School met expected growth in Reading and Composite scores while experiencing High Growth in Math and End of Grade testing. Hertford County High School students recorded High Growth in EOC and Composite scores while meeting expected growth in Reading, Math and End of Grade testing. The EOC and Composite scores for C.S. Brown met expected growth.

“This is a tribute to our schools, our county commissioners for their support, to our teachers, our administrators and especially to our students and our parents,” Dr. Fahey said. “Our students take their academics very seriously and they work very hard. High Growth is a great statement for Hertford County Public Schools. On behalf of our school system, we thank you, the county commissioners and the administrators, for your support.

Fahey noted that Riverview Elementary was “very, very close” (to meeting growth criteria).

“They missed it by one or two questions,” he said. “The same is true for the Early College High School, they’re only in their second year and had a 90 percent pass rate in English, but they slipped in a couple of areas that prevented them from making growth.”

Following Fahey’s brief presentation, Commissioner Howard Hunter III noted that just a few years ago the state’s Department of Public Instruction was critical of the lack of educational growth in Hertford County Schools.

“The state was knocking on our door about the poor grades of our students, and now look where we are,” Hunter said. “I commend you, your staff, teachers, parents, students; this is great news.”

Dr. Fahey took no credit for the turnaround.

“This has been in place for years; it’s something that has been accumulating and there’s been continued growth,” he said, responding to Hunter’s remarks. “I just got here at a very good time to lead this district.”

The Superintendent also noted that the high school had so much growth, and the middle school had high growth in math and end of grade…so much to the point where they brought up the average of the entire district.

“We need some nice banners at our schools that say we are a high growth district,” Dr. Fahey noted. “That will help our community; it will help businesses locate here because they can see that we’re moving in the right direction.”

“We are on the right track and I commend you and your staff and our teachers and students for this great accomplishment,” Commissioner William “Bill” Mitchell said.

“If you look at Riverview’s numbers, although they did not meet the growth model, they had improved numbers across the board,” Commissioner Ronald Gatling said. “They grew in every area, but sometimes those (state) numbers do not tell the whole story.”

“I can remember back when the high school was usually among the lowest on these statistics and the elementary schools were the ones holding up the banner, so to speak,” Commission Chairman Johnnie Ray Farmer said. “I’m really proud to see these current numbers; to see the high school improve to the point where they’re the ones pulling the district. This is a welcomed change. Hard work does pay off.”