Al Richardson, curriculum director of Marshfield R-I Schools, presented the updated Annual Performance Report (APR) data during the Marshfield Board of Education meeting Monday in the high school library.

With the report coming out later than expected due to different changes that were made to it, Richardson said it’s not the final version, but the first final version of the report and more data will be included.

For major changes, Richardson noted this year social studies was a field test on the scores from last year, so they are not included in the report. In addition, this was the first year for science data, according to Richardson.

“The other main change is the way the data looks,” said Richardson. “The APR they put out this year changed drastically. We’re in the process of switching over to MSIP-6, and with that, it’s going to look different in terms of what they measure and how they want to report it out.”

Richardson said the other change was that the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) realized school districts were losing focus and comparing themselves to other districts instead of focusing on themselves and how they can improve from what they did last year. Because of this new approach, comparisons to other districts will not be reported out, but rather the Marshfield R-I district will compare itself to itself as a way of better understanding areas of strengths and weaknesses.

“DESE went away from the actual percentages, where you’ve earned this many points,” said Richardson. “What they decided is to go more visual and include statistical and visual representations of how districts and charter schools perform rather than point totals and percentages.”

Since DESE has moved away from generating calculations of points or the percentages of points earned, Richardson said data will include visualization of the district’s growth, progress and status as compared to state level data.

“We still have status, which is our three years’ average,” said Richardson. “Growth, which actually focuses on if we are giving our students the ability to grow from one year to the next, and then the progress looks at the procedures we actually have in place for a particular grade level and if we are doing better as a district on that.”

On the chart provided in the report, Richardson explained status is the one the district really concentrates on because it helps them address where the students are currently. One thing the state did to make things easier was it started printing out a state average.

“Our average is 332.7, which was our MAP test percentage index,” said Richardson. “The state was 341.2, so in terms of ELA, we were just shy of hitting the state average in terms of MAP percentage index. For math, the one below it, we were 317 and the state was 313.6, so we were just a little bit above the state average, and that’s for Standard 1, which is for academic achievement. That looks at all our students, who took the MAP test that were here for the full academic year.”

Growth, according to Richardson, examines individual students. He noted a chart in the report, which compares students’ growth, status and progress based on colors, such as yellow (floor), green (on track) and blue (exceeding). In the growth field, Richardson said if they can stay in the green, then it shows they are helping their students stay on track. In order to reach a higher level, Richardson noted they would have to achieve more than one year’s growth in a year.

“In order to get a fifth-grade student that’s performing on a third-grade level in math, if we get them up just one grade level by the end of fifth grade, then they’ll be at a fourth-grade level,” said Richardson. “We just have to be able to make some leaps and strides.”

Since growth actually studies how the student did the year before, it only takes a look at the district’s fourth graders through eighth graders for math and ELA, according to Richardson, who added third grade is the first year students take the test, so there’s no rating compared to the year before.

Other items approved during meeting were as follows:

    •    Approved EdCounsel EGS Services contract to utilize EdCounsel Guide Services as the district’s policy provider for a five year period beginning July 1, 2020.

    •    Approved Bond Refinance Resolution, which authorizes the refinancing of the bonds discussed at last month’s meeting.

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