News

For Immediate Release
October 31, 2007

2007 Report Card shows nearly 300 struggling schools making significant improvement


184 schools make AYP for second year to move off academic improvement status

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) announced today that more than 200 schools and districts are being removed from improvement status as a result of their student performance, attendance rates and graduation rates. The schools and districts met Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) for two consecutive years by meeting the standards of No Child Left Behind (NCLB). The 2007 Report Card released publicly today statewide was provided locally to schools and districts in mid-September – the earliest release in the 21-years of producing school report cards.

“I applaud these schools and districts for making a significant improvement, while various performance, attendance and graduation targets continue to increase each year,” said Christopher A. Koch, State Superintendent of Education. “This group of schools and districts are to be commended for their continued efforts to improve student achievement in their schools.”

Analysis of the 2007 Report Card data shows that 184 schools and 36 districts have been removed from improvement status by making AYP for two consecutive years. In addition, the data also shows that 113 schools and 102 districts in improvement status will not advance to further sanctions because they have showed sufficient gains over the past two testing cycles.

The most recent tests were given in March and April. Students in third – eighth grades took the Illinois Standards Achievement Test (ISAT) in reading and mathematics while students in fourth and seventh grades were tested in science and fifth and eighth grade students were tested in writing. Students in 11th grade take the Prairie State Achievement Exam (PSAE), which tests students in math, reading science and writing. Statewide averages for the 2007 testing were released last month.

The Report Card offers a wealth of useful and important information for students, schools and districts, as well as parents and community members including overall student performance; performance on state assessments; student demographics; and financial information.

Highlights of the 2007 Report Card include:

Student Demographics

Student Performance & Achievement

ISBE has produced the School Report Card since 1986 for every public school and district in the state. State report cards have been produced since 2002 and are required by the federal No Child Left Behind law.

A full list of the 184 schools and 36 districts that were removed from improvement status can be found online at http://www.isbe.net/pdf/school_district_removed_2007.pdf.

A full list of the 113 schools and 102 districts that are in improvement status that will not advance to further sanctions because they have made sufficient gains over the past two testing can be found online at http://www.isbe.net/pdf/district_school_ayp_improvement.pdf.

Schools and districts are placed into improvement status when they do not make AYP for two consecutive state testing cycles. After two years, schools and districts enter academic early warning status. Failing to make AYP for the fourth time, schools and districts are in academic watch status. After a fifth calculation, a school enters restructuring planning and will implement that plan should it fail to make AYP for the sixth time. Federal sanctions can include offering school choice and supplemental education services for schools in improvement and corrective action which receive Title I funds. State and federal requirements merge for schools in restructuring. Districts are charged with developing a restructuring plan for schools after not making AYP for the fifth calculations.

NCLB requires all states to measure each public school’s and district’s achievements and establish annual achievement targets for the state. The overreaching goal is for all students to meet or exceed standards in reading and mathematics by 2014.