The state has declared 11 Bibb County schools “chronically failing,” while two others were recognized for making gains.
The 2016 “chronically failing schools” list, released Thursday by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement, includes 153 schools from 35 districts, up from 127 schools the previous year. The report names schools that earned a score of 60 or lower on the College and Career Ready Performance Index for three consecutive years, 2014-16.
Bibb County schools that received an F were Brookdale, Bruce, Martin Luther King Jr., Southfield, Hartley, Barden (which closed in summer 2016), Union and Riley elementary schools; Appling and Ballard-Hudson middle schools; and Southwest High School. Hunt Elementary in Peach County also got an F.
But, there was good news too. One Bibb school, Williams Elementary, moved off the list. Alexander II Magnet School and Springdale Elementary earned A grades on the updated School Reports. In addition, 10 Bibb schools moved up a grade, while only two declined, Superintendent Curtis Jones said.
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“If 10 out of 40 schools improve, that means 1 out of 4 went up. It gave us reason to believe we are doing some good things,” Jones said. “We are going to continue to do our best to make our schools better.”
The Governor’s Office of Student Achievement also recognized school success, and Burdell and Springdale elementary schools made the Greatest Gains list. Greatest Gains awards went to 139 schools that had a CCRPI Progress Score in at least the 93rd percentile. Highest Performing awards went to 130 schools that had a three-year average CCRPI Achievement Score in at least the 93rd percentile. Fifty-one schools earned both awards.
Jones said the new information mirrors what officials already knew from other reports, and modified plans have already been implemented to make positive changes. The school system will continue to move forward and stay focused on reading, attendance and discipline.
State Superintendent Richard Woods said the state will continue to support the work being done to improve the Bibb system. The metric of the school ranking system is being reviewed to see if it gives a true representation of the school districts.
“You can see these schools who have traditionally been underperforming, but they’re seeing improvement,” he said. “I think what we’re looking at now is the entire process to see, is it fair ... to see, are we actually measuring what we need to do, and we’ll take it (from there). I think the jury is still out on what does it mean to be on that list right now.”