Whiten Reviews New Accountability Standard

The Stephens County School System continues to learn more about new accountability standards taking effect this year in Georgia.

As part of the state’s waiver from “No Child Left Behind,” Georgia has created a new accountability standard known as the College and Career Ready Performance Index, or CCRPI, to replace Adequate Yearly Progress, or AYP.

Stephens County School Superintendent Sherrie Whiten updated Board of Education members on some of the difference between the two during a work session Thursday.

Whiten said that some of the differences between the CCRPI and AYP are significant.

“It still emphasizes test scores, but it also emphasizes making sure kids are ready for the next level, making sure fifth graders are ready to move to the middle school and be successful, making sure those eighth graders are ready to move on to the high school, and making sure when kids graduate, they are ready for work or post-secondary options,” said Whiten. “You get points for the percentage of kids that are taking two world language classes. It looks at SAT participation. It looks at AP participation, how many kids have graduation plans, career inventory. It looks at a lot of different things.”

Whiten went on to say that the Stephens County School System has already been working to track a number of the things that the CCRPI will look at.

“We have already, through our milestones for several years, looked at things such as how many of our ninth grade kids actually leave ninth grade with all of their credits,” said Whiten. “A lot of those measures are things we have actually been doing.”

The CCRPI takes effect this year and the state has released where schools stand as a benchmark heading into use of the new measure.

Under the CCRPI, schools fell into categories such as Reward, Priority, Focus, and Alert schools.

Recently, the state released its list of Reward schools, which are high-performing and high-progress schools and all six Stephens County Schools were listed on one of the two Reward schools list.

Big A Elementary, Eastanollee Elementary, Liberty Elementary, Toccoa Elementary, and Stephens County Middle School were named reward schools-highest performing, which means they are in the top five percent of Title I schools for performance, while Stephens County High School was named a reward school for high progress, which looked at the top ten percent in the state for improvement in performance.