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100% of DPS K-8 schools post highest end-of-grade scores ever

June 2, 2003 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Dr. Bert L’Homme, Associate Superintendent Instructional Services, 560-3716 DURHAM--Preliminary end-of-grade test score performance composites for grades 3 through 8 reveal that all 36 elementary and middle schools in Durham Public Schools sailed to their highest overall scores since composite scores were first mandated by the State of North Carolina six years ago, Superintendent Ann Denlinger announced today. Denlinger made the announcement to the community at Merrick-Moore Elementary school. "This year’s preliminary performance composite scores are very encouraging and reflect the incredibly high level of dedication to our community’s young people by Durham Public Schools’ teachers and principals, our Central Services team, the Board of Education, and our community," said Denlinger. "I am so proud of our students. These impressive results confirm that what we are doing is working. We shall stay the course and achieve our ambitious goals!" Preliminary test scores released today by Durham Public Schools show that all 36 elementary and middle schools recorded their highest performance composites ever. A performance composite is a school’s overall percentage of students tested who are at or above grade level in reading and mathematics. Some highlights of the report include: Eight of 27 elementary schools have reached or surpassed the 90-percent proficiency mark. An additional nine elementary schools have surpassed the 80-percent proficiency mark. Seven of nine middle schools surpassed the 70-percent proficiency mark. Five middle schools surpassed the 80 percent mark, including Durham School of the Arts which reached 90-percent proficiency. Morehead Montessori Elementary School has posted the greatest increase, of 58.4 percentage points, from 37.1 to 95.5 percent proficiency. Ten of the 11 lowest performing elementary schools in 1996-97 have made gains by at least 30 percentage points by the end of the 2002-03 school year. In addition to Morehead’s increase, Club Boulevard and Pearson grew by 41 percentage points, R.N. Harris by 40.8 points, Watts by 37.3, Fayetteville Street by 36.7, Smith by 35.1, Glenn by 34.9, Eastway by 33 and Spaulding by 31.3 points. The remaining elementary schools in 1996-97 also showed significant growth last year: Lakewood’s composite score has grown by 25.9 percentage points, Merrick Moore by 24.5, Oak Grove by 23.5, E. K. Powe by 23.2, Holt by 20.9, Hillandale by 20.3, Mangum by 17.1 (since becoming K-5 in 1997), Easley by 16.8, Hope Valley by 16.5 (since opening in 1999), Parkwood by 16.5, Pearsontown by 16.4, Eno Valley by 16.1, Burton by 14.5, Little River by 14.4, Southwest by 12, Forest View by 11.4, and Bethesda by 10.8 percentage points. Denlinger and the Durham Public Schools Board of Education have set a course for increasing achievement levels for all students, with the dual goal of having at least 95 percent of third-graders reading proficiently and closing the Achievement Gap by the end of the 2006-07 school year. The district has bolstered its efforts around literacy initiatives, especially in the early grades, establishing a six-year upward trend in student achievement results. The test score data released by Durham Public Schools provide a first look at districtwide performance. A more detailed analysis of the data (e.g., by ethnicity and gender) will be available for release this summer. The state of North Carolina will utilize the data from these scores--along with the results of end-of-course test scores administered at the high school level--in developing its ABC accountability designations, which also will be available for release later this year. ### Attachments: Performance Composites Across 7 Years of Continuous Improvement Districtwide Composite Scores for Grades 3-8 Individual Schools Performance Composite Scores 1996-97 vs. 2002-03