Highlands High most improved; Silver Grove shows big decline
Of the 91 schools in Boone, Campbell, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton and Pendleton counties, Highlands High School showed the most improvement since the last two-year testing period by scoring 18 points higher.
Silver Grove elementary and high schools, counted as one school, showed the most significant decline with a drop of 12.8 points. The most improved Northern Kentucky schools include Mildred Dean Elementary in Newport, up 13.3 points; A.J. Jolly Elementary in California and Highland Middle School in Fort Thomas, both up 11.9 points; Lloyd High School in Erlanger up 11.8 points; and Holmes High in Covington and Ludlow High, both up 11.7 points.
The least improved schools included Kenton Elementary, down 6.7 points; Woodfill Elementary in Fort Thomas, down 5.2 points; Sharp Middle School in Pendleton County, down 4.4 points; and First District School in Covington, down 3.6 points.
More schools than ever qualify for rewards
In the final round of KIRIS testing, 904 schools qualified for rewards. They will share $27 million.
A law passed by the 1998 General Assembly revamped the rewards system so more schools will receive money. The
number getting rewards has steadily increased.
Under the new system:
365 schools met or exceeded their goals to qualify for the highest reward level.
537 schools showed improvement on a lesser scale, to qualify for the lower reward level.
11 schools maintained their baseline score. They do not receive rewards and must create a school improvement plan.
215 schools are in the decline category and get no reward money. They must create a school improvement plan and can ask for educational assistance.
58 schools are in the lowest category, known as decline - parent notification. No reward money is given. Students in schools with this rating are allowed to transfer to schools with a higher rating. These schools must complete an improvement plan, and may ask for educational assistance.
Tests designed to judge schools, but students also rated
Four performance levels are used to categorize the performance of individual students: novice, apprentice, proficient and distinguished. Schools get no points for each novice ranking, 40 points for an apprentice, 100 points for each proficient and 140 points for each distinguished.
The goal is all students will be proficient -- or reach a score of 100 -- by 2012, 20 years after testing began.
-- Andrea Tortora