This article is the last in a four-part series on Illinois School Report Card data.
MT. VERNON — Six out of the 13 rural Jefferson County grade schools are currently making adequate yearly progress standards, according to Illinois School Report Card data.
The schools in question are Bluford Elementary School, McClellan Elementary School, Grand Prairie Elementary School, Dodds Elementary School, Bethel Grade School and Ina Community Consolidated School.
The state's minimum target for meeting AYP was 93 percent for both reading and math. None of the six schools in question made that target for 2012-2013.
Even so, schools can also make AYP based on how much their test scores improve over time, which is how these six schools qualified.
“We're pleased that once again we made AYP,” said Scott Porter, Bluford's superintendent. “A lot of it comes from setting the proper climate in the classroom and getting kids excited about learning.”
In 2012-2013, 68 percent of Bluford students met or exceeded state standards on the Illinois Standards Achievement Test, compared to 62 percent the prior year.
In reading, Bluford's score was 65 percent for 2012-2013, compared to 57 percent the prior year. In math, the score was 71 percent, compared to 66 percent the year before.
A total of 65 percent of McClellan students met or exceeded the ISAT standards for 2012-2013, compared to 60 percent the prior year.
The school's reading score was at 62 percent, up from 50 percent, and the math score was at 68 percent, down from 70 percent.
Charles Peterson, superintendent and principal at McClellan, pointed out that the state raised the “cut scores” for last spring's test, making it harder to meet the ISAT standards.
Also, the AYP target has been increased further this school year, from 93 to 100 percent, which is not a realistic goal, Peterson said.
“You're never going to have 100 percent of all kids meet or exceed,” Peterson said.