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Education

Eight Schools in Austin ISD Fail to Meet State Standards

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The number of school districts in Texas that did not meet state standards in 2016 rose slightly over 2015, though almost 94 percent of districts statewide did pass.

1,131 districts met the standards, while 66 failed. At the individual school level, 7,667 campuses met the 2016 standards, which is a small improvement over last year.

As the Texas Tribune notes:

School officials statewide called on Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath not to rate schools based on this year's scores — the result of widespread logistical and technical problems with exam administration under a new testing vendor. That included a computer glitch that caused more than 14,000 students to lose their answers.

In Austin ISD, the vast majority of schools met standards this year, though eight schools did not. 

Among the schools that failed to meet standards: Norman and Pickle elementary schools; Burnet, Mendez, Dobie and Garcia middle schools; the Graduation Preparatory Academy at Lanier and AISD's International high school.

"Mendez [Middle School] had tremendous growth, but it wasn't enough to put them over the edge," says Edmund Oropez, AISD Chief Schools Officer. "Everyone's a little different. There's some commonalities. Basically, social studies and writing really are the tripping points in middle schools that we're seeing across the board. And we're going to have to address that."

This is the third year in a row that Mendez Middle School has not met state standards. Oropez says AISD is putting a new principal in the school, too. 

AISD Superintendent Paul Cruz says he's proud of the schools that did meet standards, but says there's more work to do at the schools that did not.

"I'd want them to be well above that standard," Cruz says. "While they're close on meeting standards, I still know that there are many students at that school that did not actually pass, are not proficient in that grade level." 

One school in Manor ISD, Manor Excel Academy, did not meet standards.

One school in Hays ISD, Hemphill elementary, did not meet standards.

You can look up your own district here.

All schools in Eanes, Lake Travis, Del Valle, Leander, Pflugerville, Round Rock, Hutto, Bastrop ISDs passed state standards. As for local charter schools, the Wayside Schools charter system and Magnolia Montessori Charter School did not meet standards.

Next year, the state will move to an A through F grading system to assess school quality. Those ratings will take more factors into account, rather than relying on standardized test scores, including attendance and graduation rates.

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