Chippewa Valley, L'Anse Creuse High Schools Miss the Mark on Federal Academic Goals
Chippewa Valley, L'Anse Creuse, New Haven and Utica districts made adequate yearly progress overall, but individual schools in each district failed to meet the goals.
No Child Left Behind’s Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) testing has meant mixed results for Macomb Township’s school districts, with high schools in Chippewa Valley, L’Anse Creuse and New Haven failing to meet the federal academic goals this year but with the majority of elementary and middle schools achieving the target goals.
This failure on the part of the township’s high schools mirrors the decline reported statewide, with the percentage of high schools making AYP dropping from 81.9 percent last year to 60 percent this year.
Overall, Michigan schools saw a 7.1 percentage point decrease in students meeting the federal academic goals, from 86 percent of schools in 2009-10 to 79 percent in 2010-11.
Chippewa Valley Schools
Tested in elementary, middle and high school reading and math, Chippewa Valley Schools met AYP in all categories except high school reading.
Looking at the results on a per-school level, each of the district’s 18 elementary and middle schools met AYP and earned A-grades on their Michigan Education YES! accreditation.
"Making AYP means you have met all the government criteria that is important to us," said Superintendent Ron Roberts. "It impacts our learning goals for our students and means we’re being successful in our goals."
However, the district’s high schools did not fare as well, with Dakota and Chippewa earning B grades and neither making AYP.
"The larger and more diverse the high school, the more difficult it is to make AYP, because you will have many subgroups, so there are many more reasons as to why you will not make AYP," Roberts said.
Because AYP results are divided into categories of school subjects and by subgroups, such as ethnic groups, failure by any one subgroup can prevent a school from meeting AYP.
In the cases of Chippewa and Dakota, the failing subgroups were identified as black or African-American students and those with disabilities. Both subgroups were cited for Dakota, while only the subgroup containing black or African-American students was cited for Chippewa.
"It is not a fair comparison to compare schools based on only making AYP," Roberts said. "It's like shooting 100 free throws. You make 99 and you miss one and you are judged on that one. You need to dig further into the data."
Roberts added that in analyzing AYP data, the district will not only look at the failure of subgroups, but of students scores overall.
"I don’t look at it as a subgroup, I look at it as an overall sense," he said. "All of our students need to be meeting a target, ... so we need to look at all students who scored at a not proficient level and see what we need to do regardless of the subgroup they represent."
Although Chippewa Valley High School met AYP in 2010, by not achieving AYP for 2011, the school will remain in Phase 2 of School Improvement until it makes AYP two years in a row. It will then exit this status.
Until that time, Chippewa will be “identified for corrective action,” meaning the school must follow various plans and programs prescribed by the state.
"Corrective action means we are going to analyze our data, which we do every year, and put new strategies in place to address our deficiencies," Roberts said. "It’s frustrating because we really have made a concerted effort to address the learning needs of our district. We work very closely with the intermediate school district to help students be successful and have fallen short in a few areas, so we’ll address those once again."
L’Anse Creuse Public Schools
Although L’Anse Creuse Public Schools met AYP for the district, it did not meet AYP in high school reading or math.
However, like Chippewa Valley’s high schools, L’Anse Creuse High School North, too, failed to make AYP.
"L'Anse Creuse is proud that the district made AYP and is working diligently on numerous initiatives to improve in 2011-12," said Michelle Irwin, senior director for community relations and programs. "To make AYP, each school must meet proficiency criteria in 50 areas. L'Anse Creuse High School North met proficiency measures in 47 areas."
North’s failure to make AYP can be attributed to the failure of tested subgroups to make AYP. As in the case of Chippewa Valley, the subgroups were identified as black or African-American students and those with disabilities.
Earning a B grade, LCN was also identified for corrective action.
Irwin added that a committee within the district continues to work to address areas identified for improvement. These include repurposing grant funds to hire these positions:
- Two deans of students
- Two intervention specialists
- Three core content consultants
In addition, support programming has been implemented to provide optimum student support.
Utica Community Schools
Meeting AYP in every category, Utica Community Schools is the only district serving Macomb Township to make AYP overall for 2011.
New Haven Community Schools
New Haven Community Schools made AYP as a district, but failed to meet AYP in middle school reading and high school math.
Only New Haven Elementary School made AYP and earned an A on its Michigan Education YES! accreditation.
Endeavour Middle School earned a B and New Haven High School a D, with the high school being “identified for restructuring – year two,” meaning the high school has not met AYP for six or more consecutive years.
Because this is the second year for “restructuring” and the high school is a Title I school, the state demands the school do such things as set aside 20 percent of the district’s Title I allocation for choice and supplemental educational services, offer public school choice or transfer and notify parents of its AYP status and a student’s right to transfer.