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Two of three Long schools make AYP
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Two of three schools in the Long County School System met the 2010 requirements for adequate yearly progress, according to preliminary results announced at the July board of education meeting.
The Long County BoE reviewed an initial report from Curriculum Director Dr. Glen Purcell, who said Smiley Elementary School and Walker Middle School both made AYP. Long County High School fell short.
Purcell said this is Smiley’s eighth year to meet the standards and Walker’s sixth.
“First of all, let’s say up front that we’re proud of all of our schools,” he said. “Smiley and Walker did exceptionally well and the high school did really well, too, but they just didn’t quite make the [standards] that keep going up each year.”
According to the director, LCHS made AYP the past three years but, despite a 92.6 percent 2010 graduation rate, the high school fell short in two of the four tested sub-groups.
“We’re not out of the hunt yet. With several of the students having already taken the test again, we’re hoping when the final results are released in September, the high school makes it,” Purcell said.
Although the initial report didn’t yield the results school system officials had hoped for, Purcell said the high school’s graduation rate is something the district can be proud of. The state graduation rate is 79.9 percent, he said, and this year’s minimum graduation rate standard to make AYP is 80 percent.
“When you take into account that the AYP standard this year was 80 percent, our school having almost 93 percent is really a good job,” Purcell said. “It’s tough and its going to get tougher. Every year, they move the bar higher and higher. This year, there was a 14 percent drop in the number of schools that made the cut and it probably will be higher than that next year. But we’re going to keep doing all we can to make the progress and give our kids a quality education.”

In other news, the Long BoE:
• heard a report from Fort. Stewart Growth Management Partnership Director Jeff Ricketson on the regional growth study being conducted in Long, Liberty, Bryan and Tattnall counties.
• approved the use of the Smiley Elementary School gymnasium by A New Beginning Church for their Sunday and Wednesday services.
• approved the school budget for the 2011 fiscal year.
• Approved changing the number of credits required for graduation, adjusting for the scheduled high school day changing from eight class periods in previous years to seven periods beginning this year.
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