Board approves action plan after Davidson County elementary school gets ‘D’ grade

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LEXINGTON, N.C. — Churchland Elementary School was given a "D" grade by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction for the 2016-2017 school year.

The elementary school is the only low performing school, but Davidson County Vice Chairman Kristie Bonnet said the school is already making improvements.

Monday night, the school board approved an improved plan for the second year in a row to help support the school with resources.

Deana Coley, Director of Elementary Education, said "this is Churchland's year."

The school has already increased proficiency in five out of the seven target goals; fourth and fifth-grade reading, fourth- grade math and fifth-grade science.

The seven-page improvement plan outlines Churchland's extensive plan of action and how the district plans to support those goals. Coley said once the state approves the plan, it will be posted online for parents and the public to review.

The resources are made possible with additional money through the title one federal funds. Those support services include the extension of professional development opportunities, poverty training for teachers and staff during teacher work days, interactive video instructional curriculums, in class assessments and the continuation of the breakfast program to help with student focus.

"I don't think that the parents have any reason to be concerned about their child going to Churchland," Bonnet said. "In fact, I think that if you walk through the halls of Churchland, you'll see that this is a teamwork approach and there’s probably more enthusiasm there now to reach their goals then you might see in somebody who might coast along all the time."

Todd Silberman, communication representative with the NC Department of Public Instruction, sent the following statement about Churchland Elementary performance grade:

"Churchland Elementary had a total “school performance grade score” in 2016-17 of 53, or a D. And because it didn’t achieve its goal for expected growth, it was deemed low-performing under the state’s school accountability rules. It was also assessed as low performing in 2015-16, with a D (score of 51) and growth goal not met.

Low-performing schools are those that receive a school performance grade of D or F and a school growth score of “met expected growth” or “not met expected growth” as defined by General Statute 115C-105.37. Schools identified as low performing must develop a plan for improvement that specifically addresses the strategies the school will implement to improve both its School Performance Grade and School Growth designation (G.S. 115C-105.37(a1)). Schools also must notify parents of the school’s low-performing status and actions it is taking to improve student performance.

A little more about Churchland’s performance: the overall percentage of tests with scores of grade-level proficient or better was 49.8 percent in 2016-17; 49.4 percent in 2015-16. Comparatively in 2016-17, Davidson’s elementary school proficiency rate was 63.1 percent; and 59.2 percent for that state."