Improvement is key for Dorchester County Public Schools

  • Monday, 13 March 2017

By Valerie Goff

Editor’s note: Ms. Goff is Community Involvement liaison for Dorchester County Public Schools.

This article was featured in Dorchester Banner on Friday, March 10, 2017.

“My objective has always been to get better, no matter where my ranking
is.” – Luke Donald, professional golfer British golfer Luke Donald has
probably never set foot in Dorchester County, but his personal philosophy
is one shared by Dorchester County Public Schools. Although
the district’s 2016 PARCC scores for the state’s mandatory tests place the
county in the state’s bottom quartile, close analysis indicates there is
plenty of good news to be had.

Of the 12 mandatory PARCC tests in grades 3 through 8, Dorchester
County youngsters equaled or exceeded the state’s average improvement
in eight of the tests, divided equally between English Language
Arts (ELA) and Math. This means that while, on average, state scores
may be improving with more children reaching Level 4 (meets expectations)
and Level 5 (exceeds expectations), Dorchester’s scores
are improving even faster. And this improvement is not just tinkering at
the edges. The 2016 5th grade math score was up 12 percentage points
over the previous year, exceeding the state average improvement by
fi ve percentage points, the 2nd most improved in the state. Also exceeding
the state average improvement by five percentage points was the
7th grade math score, 5th most improved in the state. The 3rd grade
math score was up by 11 percentage points, three more than the state average

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