A.C. Jones High School, Moreno Middle School and the Academy at Madderra also were rated academically acceptable. FMC Elementary, R.A. Hall Elementary and Thomas Jefferson Elementary were rated recognized.
Out of 28 subjects and grades tested in TAKS (grades three through nine reading; 10 and 11 English language arts; four and seven writing; three through 11 mathematics; eight, 10 and 11 science; and eight, 10 and 11 social studies), the district saw increases in 16 of these areas.
In addition, other areas that were already high (90 percent or more students passing) remained high, only dropping one or two points.
Especially noteworthy was the increase in graduation or completion rate for the district and A.C. Jones. The completion/graduation rate for Beeville ISD in 2009 (class of 2008) was 77.3 percent, while this year in 2010 (class of 2009) it increased to 86.3 percent. For A.C. Jones specifically, the completion/graduation rate last year was 80.6 percent, and this year it increased to 87.2 percent. Beeville ISD missed being recognized only by falling below the recognized standard in two TAKS areas.
“We’re proud of the improvements but still have areas, including graduation rate, that we’re going to work on,” said Nancy Jones, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction.
One of the ways the district plans to improve graduation rate is by continuing the New Beginnings program. The program reaches out to students who have dropped out or are in danger of doing so.
“We started the New Beginnings program last year, and it was really successful, so we plan to continue doing that this year,” Jones said.
As a large district, Beeville ISD receives ratings on many indicators that smaller districts in the area do not. These include Hispanic and economically disadvantaged students. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) sets minimum numbers of students in groups to count.
Whether student groups are included in the state accountability performance calculation depends on these numbers: if fewer than 30 test takers, the student group is not evaluated separately. If there are between 30 to 49 students in the group, then the group is included in accountability, if they comprise at least 10 percent of all test takers. If there are 50 or more students, then the group is evaluated, no matter what percentage they are.
This means that in small schools or districts, these student groups are not evaluated because the groups are too small. In Beeville ISD, Hispanic and economically disadvantaged students are evaluated because they meet these minimum size requirements. Beeville ISD is rated on the performance of all students, Hispanic students, white students and economically disadvantaged students.
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) is the federal (No Child Left Behind) accountability measure. It is different from these state accountability requirements, including the minimum size requirements. As a large district, Beeville ISD is also rated on more indicators for AYP than smaller districts in the area. AYP ratings are to be released on Aug. 5.