In the last full year of Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) testing, La Porte ISD is projected to be a State Recognized District, according to data recently released by the Texas Education Agency (TEA).
The state accountability system is based on student performance on the TAKS in grades 3-11. The TAKS became the assessment for Texas students beginning in 2003.
To receive a Recognized rating, districts must have a pass rate of 80 percent or more among all students who took the TAKS test district-wide. In addition, at least 80 percent of the students in each sub-group-African American, Hispanic, White/Non Hispanic and Economically Disadvantaged-must also meet the standard for passing.
Two additional indicators were added for 2011. Campuses and districts were also evaluated on the percentage of students who scored high enough on the TAKS reading and mathematics to achieve Commended Performance recognition. Specifically, 15 percent of "All Students" and "Economically Disadvantaged" students must meet Commended Performance standards on TAKS reading and math for the school or district to be Recognized, and 25 percent must meet Commended Performance for Exemplary.
In addition, campuses and the district were evaluated on the English Language Learners (ELL) Progress Indicator. In order for the campus or district to be rated Recognized or Exemplary, 60 percent of ELL students tested must meet the standard or show improvement on the reading portion of TAKS, TAKS (Accommodated), TAKS-Modified or the Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment .
Also in 2011, passing standards in math and science were increased, and the use of the Texas Projection Measure (TPM) was discontinued. TPM was used in the state and federal accountability ratings in 2009 and 2010 as a means of elevating a campus or district rating in cases where neither the TAKS Met Standard indicator nor Required Improvement were met. This year, the TAKS Met Standard indicator included all TAKS and TAKS (Accommodated) results as it did in 2010, but also included TAKS-Modified and TAKS-Alternative results for the first time.
"In this final year of TAKS testing, I want to commend our students, teachers, staff and parents who devoted much time and effort to the attainment of academic success," said Lloyd W. Graham, LPISD superintendent. "With increased passing standards in the areas of math and science and the added indicators, they rose to the challenge, and I am very proud of everyone who played a role in
La Porte ISD meeting the standards for earning this recognition."
Graham explained that the district is subject to 25 TAKS measures, and LPISD student pass rates were in the 80 to 99 percent range on 23 of 25 measures, with the remaining two meeting Required Improvement/Exceptions.. The district also saw exemplary performance across the board in writing and social studies and continued improvement in math, science and reading.
He added that the district is particularly proud of the district's growth in completion rate, which is yet another accountability indicator. The completion rate is the percentage of students from a class of beginning ninth graders who complete their high school education by the anticipated graduation date. This cohort includes students who transfer in during the second, third and fourth years. In LPISD, all accountability subpopulations had a completion rate of 96 percent and above.
A final accountability indicator is the dropout rate for grades seven and eight, and LPISD had no dropouts at this level.
Individual LPISD campuses demonstrated outstanding performance on TAKS testing as well, and preliminary results indicate that two schools, Lomax and Rizzuto elementary schools, will be designated as Exemplary campuses.
Standards for earning Exemplary status include 90 percent of all students and each student sub-group passing all tests.
The preliminary results also show that four campuses-Jennie Reid and Heritage elementary schools, Baker Sixth Grade Campus and La Porte Junior High -met the standards for Recognized ratings. Recognized campuses are those in which the group of "all students" and each student sub-group have a pass rate of 80 percent or higher.
Campuses projected to earn Academically Acceptable ratings include La Porte High School, Lomax Junior High School, La Porte Elementary, Bayshore Elementary and College Park Elementary. Preliminary results indicate that De Walt Alternative will once again earn the alternative rating of AEA Academically Acceptable.
Figures from the 2010-11 school year show that LPISD currently has 7,816 students, with 7.04 percent African American, 43.4 percent Hispanic, 45.2 percent White/Non-Hispanic, 1.05 percent Asian/Pacific Islander and 0.54 percent American Indian/Alaskan. A total of 47.4 percent of LPISD students are considered Economically Disadvantaged, and 7.98 percent are Limited English Proficient.
Districts throughout Texas are also evaluated under the federal accountability system for Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in the areas of reading/language arts, mathematics, and graduation/attendance rate in grades 3-8 and 10. These accountability provisions of the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act are separate from state accountability, and the 2010-2011 AYP has not yet been determined.
Beginning with the 2011-12 school year, students in grades 3 through 9 will take the new State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR). According to the Texas Education Agency, STAAR will be a more rigorous testing program than its predecessor. Students currently in ninth, 10th and 11th grades will continue to take TAKS to meet their graduation requirements. Subsequent classes must pass STAAR end-of-course exams to fulfill their graduation requirements.