Schools lauded for ranking success

Published 7:09 pm Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Brookhaven School District Board President Dan Brown took theopportunity Tuesday night to thank the district’s five principalsfor a job well done in Mississippi Statewide Accountability Systemratings.

“All of our schools were very successful in meeting thestandards set by the state,” Brown said. “I just want to commendyou all for an outstanding job. Congratulations.”

According to 2010 results, the Brookhaven School District hasbeen rated successful, which is the third-highest of seven rankingsthat measure a district’s educational success.

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The accountability system is judged by seven rankings, whichdescend in order from star, high performing, successful, academicwatch, low performing, at-risk of failing and failing. The systemfactors in a quality distribution index (QDI) that grades schools’success across various student groups, a high school completionindex (HSCI) and graduation rate, and a growth status that showswhether or not schools are succeeding in a one-year span.

Accountability results are derived from the Subject Area TestingProgram and the Mississippi Curriculum Test, Second Edition, bothof which are statewide tests.

Brown spoke to each principal individually, starting withBrookhaven Elementary School’s Dolores Gearing, who steered BES tokeep their second-highest ranking of high performing.

“Even though this is your first year as the principal atBrookhaven Elementary, you were high performing and you met all thestandards and you did an outstanding job,” he told her. “We’re veryproud.”

Lipsey Middle School Principal Rob McCreary is in his first yearas a principal as well, and Brown said he had stepped things up anotch at the school, improving from an academic watch rating in2009 to successful in 2010.

“Mr. McCreary has moved it up a level, which was hard to do,” hesaid. “We’re pleased with your outstanding job.”

Alexander Junior High School showed the most marked improvementof the city schools, being rated successful this year after beingjudged at risk of failure last year.

“This is someone special,” Brown said. “Mr. Henderson movedAlexander up three levels. I want to congratulate you, and I knowunder you, Alexander will continue to grow.”

Brown told Brookhaven High School’s Dr. Jay Smith that the boardis proud that BHS moved up one ranking from successful to highperforming.

“We appreciate the job you’re doing, it’s an excellent job,” hesaid. “You’re high performing as well, and that’s very good, and wethank you very much.”

Mamie Martin Elementary School does not take part in the review,but Principal Danita Hobbs was also included in the congratulatorymeeting.

“I can’t forget ‘The University,'” Brown said with a laugh,referring to Mamie Martin. “She’s high performance too.”

Brown told the board that the entire school district should beproud of the schools’ achievements this year.

“Every school is successful in every area,” he said. “I don’tknow what you’re waiting for, that deserves a round ofapplause.”

And board members were pleased as well.

“We can sing all the praises of the principals, but Mrs.(Superintendent Lea) Barrett needs to be appreciated for hertireless efforts,” said board member Carl Aycock. “Without yourleadership we wouldn’t be where we are.”