Georgia Department Of Education Releases 2016 School Climate Ratings And Financial Efficiency Ratings

LaGrange, Ga., January 26, 2017 – The Georgia Department of Education released the 2016 School Climate Star Ratings and Financial Efficiency Ratings for each public school and district in the state. The ratings are based on the 20152016 school year. They are part of the College and Career Ready Performance Index reports that the state developed to measure public school accountability.

School Climate Star Ratings For climate ratings, each school received a 1-5 star rating, with five stars representing an excellent school climate and one star representing a school climate most in need of improvement. The ratings are based on the following indicators:

• Student discipline data

• Attendance records for students, teachers, staff, and administrators

• Results from the Georgia Student Health Survey II, the Georgia School Personnel Survey and the Georgia Parent Survey Troup County School System (TCSS) saw 12 schools with increased climate rating scores from 2015, and 11 schools received a rating of three or higher. Some schools that have recently implemented the Positive Behavior Intervention & Supports (PBIS) framework saw a marked score increase. For instance:

• Gardner Newman Middle School’s score increased 6.9 points; going from 76.3 to 83.2

• Franklin Forest Elementary’s score increased 6.4 points; going from 86 to 92.4

• EthelW. Kight Elementary’s score increased 5.1 points; going from 84.3 to 89.4 Positive Behavior Intervention & Supports PBIS is a proactive strategy for defining, teaching, and supporting appropriate student behaviors to create positive school environments using data as a key tool.

At the start of the 20152016 school year, six TCSS schools implemented PBIS. They are now in the second year of implementation and have seen great gains in student discipline. Due to their success, four additional schools added the PBIS framework on their campus. While their scores will not reflect current improvement, the district looks to see those in the next phase of climate ratings.

“Several PBIS schools have seen a reduction in the number of referrals to the office. In addition, we have seen the number of tribunal hearings, discipline appeals, and hearing recommendations decrease,” said Dr. Cole Pugh, TCSS Superintendent. “The recently released Star Ratings do not capture improvements in this current school year.”

Ethel W. Kight reported a 70% reduction in discipline referrals during the first quarter of the 2016-2017 school year. “We attribute the decrease in discipline referrals to the implementation of PBIS along with teacher buy-in,” said Candace McGhee, Principal of Ethel W. Kight Elementary School. “The decrease in referrals can also be attributed to the Rigor and Relevance Training/ Coaching we have participated in this year. The focus was clearly on rigorous instruction and student engagement.”

Throughout the state, 15 percent of schools earned a 5-star rating (excellent), 39.8 percent earned a 4-star rating (above average), 28.9 percent earned a 3-star rating (average), 11 percent earned a 2-star rating (below satisfactory), and 3.7 percent earned a 1-star rating (unsatisfactory) – an increase of 3.6 percentage points in the number of schools earning the top (5-star) rating.

“We’re committed to providing – in a responsible fashion – information on school performance for the use of educators, parents, and communities,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said.

Financial Efficiency Rating The Financial Efficiency Star Rating provides a measure of a local school district’s per-pupil spending in relation to the academic achievements of its students. Specifically, the rating is based on a threeyear average of per-pupil spending, which is then associated with the district’s CCRPI score. Each district receives a rating ranging from one-half star to five stars; a five-star district can be described as having strong academic outcomes and lower levels of expenditures in comparison with other districts. This year’s ratings are based on data from the 2013-14, 2014-15, and 201516 academic years.

Troup County received a 3.5 Financial Efficiency Star Rating. GaDOE said that response to feedback from district stakeholders, the K12 expenditures included in the Financial Efficiency Star Rating were adjusted between the 2015 and 2016 rating, so a comparison between years is not valid.

To learn more about Troup County School System, visit troup.org and the Troup County School System Facebook page.