MFISD earns highest ranking from TEA

By Lew K. Cohn

Managing Editor

The Highlander

Marble Falls Independent School District (MFISD) had plenty to be proud of when the Texas Education Agency (TEA) released its final 2017 accountability rankings on Nov. 14.

As a district, Marble Falls was ranked as Met Standard, the highest possible ranking in the new TEA rankings, as all seven campuses were ranked as having Met Standard, or in the case of Falls Career High School, Met Alternative Standard. The district also was ranked as achieving all four indexes used to determine rankings.

Individually, Marble Falls High School not only Met Standard but also earned distinctions in six of the seven areas possible — Reading/English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, Closing Performance Gaps and Postsecondary Readiness. The only distinction not earned by MFHS was in Student Progress.

Colt Elementary earned Met Standard and distinction in five of six possible areas — Reading/English Language Arts, Math, Science, Student Progress and Postsecondary Readiness. The only exception was in Closing Performance Gaps.

Marble Falls Elementary earned Met Standard and distinction in three of six areas — Reading/English Language Arts, Math and Student Progress.

Spicewood Elementary earned Met Standard and a distinction in one area, for Closing Performance Gaps.

Marble Falls Middle School and Highland Lakes Elementary earned Met Standard but did not earn any distinctions.

Districts, campuses, and charters receive one of three ratings under the state accountability system: Met Standard, Met Alternative Standard, or Improvement Required.

The 2017 ratings are based on a system that uses a performance index framework that includes four areas:

* Index 1 – Student Achievement (which provides a snapshot of performance across all subjects);

* Index 2 – Student Progress (which measures year-to-year student progress by student group);

* Index 3 – Closing Performance Gaps (which emphasizes the academic achievement of economically disadvantaged students and the lowest performing racial/ethnic student groups);

* Index 4 – Postsecondary Readiness (which emphasizes the importance of earning a high school diploma that provides students with the foundation necessary for success in college, the workforce, job training programs or the military).

To earn a rating of Met Standard or Met Alternative Standard, a campus or district must meet the target on either Student Achievement (Index 1) or Student Progress (Index 2) – plus meet the targets on Closing Performance Gaps (Index 3) and Postsecondary Readiness (Index 4).

Each year, the TEA must provide accountability ratings for more than 1,200 school districts and charters, as well as more than 8,700 campuses statewide.

Approximately 95 percent of school districts and charters across Texas have achieved the rating of Met Standard. In addition, the number of individual campuses achieving a rating of Met Standard or Met Alternative Standard increased again this year, while the number of campuses receiving a rating of Improvement Required continued to decline.

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