CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) report cards are out, and most school divisions in the NBC29 viewing area passed with flying colors. However, a handful of schools simply don't meet state standards.

Public schools in Augusta, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa, and Madison counties are all accredited.

Charlottesville City Schools and Albemarle County Public Schools (ACPS) each have several schools that are now labeled "accredited with conditions," meaning they are below state standards.

VDOE found the city’s Buford Middle and Walker Upper Elementary schools have one or more school quality indicators at Level Three, which is below standards.

ACPS’ Community Public Charter is accredited pending review of alternate accreditation plan, while Greer Elementary, Murray High and Woodbrook Elementary schools are accredited with conditions.

Just about all of these schools struggled with achievement gaps in English and math. Buford Middle and Murray High also deal with chronic absenteeism.

"Just like anything in life, everybody has different challenges and different things. And this is just one of the challenges that Greer and Woodbrook and Murray are working on," ACPS Director of Secondary Education Jay Thomas said.

"Whether a school is accredited or whether a school is accredited with conditions, we put in a place a continuous improvement plan for all schools. And so we just want to make sure we're doing better every year," said Beth Cheuk of Charlottesville City Schools.

The schools in question will undergo an academic review conducted by the Virginia Department of Education. Leaders at each school and the division will develop and implement a corrective action plan.


09/30/2019 Release from the Virginia Department of Education:

RICHMOND, Va. — Superintendent of Public Instruction James Lane announced today that 92% of Virginia’s public schools are meeting the state Board of Education’s expectations for achievement and improving student outcomes, and are accredited for the 2019-2020 school year.

The accreditation ratings reported by the Virginia Department of Education also show that schools are making progress in reducing chronic absenteeism, but that declines in performance on state reading tests — especially among black and economically disadvantaged students — have resulted in an increase in the number of schools that will receive state assistance to address achievement gaps in English.

“This is the second year that schools have been evaluated under the 2017 Board of Education-approved accreditation standards, and this new system for measuring the progress and needs of schools is doing exactly what it was designed to do,” Lane said. “Last year’s ratings compelled school divisions to focus on the need to reduce chronic absenteeism, and their success in improving student attendance is reflected in the ratings for 2019-2020. These latest ratings will help VDOE target its efforts toward increasing student literacy and furthering progress toward eliminating achievement gaps in the schools that are most in need of the department’s support and expertise.”

The number of schools meeting the state board’s goal for reducing chronic absenteeism increased 4%, from 1,600 to 1,663. Twenty-three schools are identified as in need of state support to reduce chronic absenteeism, 21 fewer schools than last year. The number of schools identified as in need of state assistance to address achievement gaps in English increased by 13, to 125, compared with 112 last year.

“The Board of Education is focused on ensuring that every child has an opportunity to reach his or her potential,” Board of Education President Daniel Gecker said. “The 2017 accreditation standards focus local decision-making and resources on the board’s goal of reducing — and ultimately eliminating — achievement gaps while maintaining high standards for all students. This work, along with the work the board is currently doing on the Standards of Quality, advances the board’s equity agenda, as set forth in our adopted comprehensive plan.”

Under the revised accreditation system, schools are evaluated on school quality indicators grouped in three categories: academic achievement, achievement gaps, and student engagement and outcomes. Performance on each indicator is rated at one of the following levels:

  • Level One: Meets or exceeds state standard or sufficient improvement
  • Level Two: Near state standard or sufficient improvement
  • Level Three: Below state standard

The following tables summarize how Virginia schools performed on each applicable indicator.

Academic Achievement Summary

Indicator

Schools at Level 1

Schools at Level 2

Schools at Level 3

English

1,689

81

49

Mathematics

1,769

23

27

Science

1,649

51

60

Achievement Gaps Summary

Indicator

Schools at Level 1

Schools at Level 2

Schools at Level 3

English

975

719

125

Mathematics

1,406

352

61

Student Engagement and Outcomes Summary

Indicator

Schools at

Level 1

Schools at

Level 2

Schools at

Level 3

Chronic Absenteeism

1,663

133

23

Dropout Rate (High Schools)

256

43

31

Graduation & Completion (High Schools)

302

17

9

As a consequence of the school quality indicator ratings released today, 252 schools will undergo academic reviews.

Schools earn one of the following three accreditation ratings based on performance on school quality indicators, as follows:

  • Accredited – Schools with all school quality indicators at either Level One or Level Two. In addition, high-performing schools with waivers from annual accreditation authorized by the General Assembly are rated as Accredited.
  • Accredited with Conditions – Schools with one or more school quality indicators at Level Three
  • Accreditation Denied – Schools that fail to adopt or fully implement required corrective actions to address Level Three school-quality indicators.

The following table summarizes overall school accreditation ratings for 2019-2020.

State School Accreditation Summary

Accreditation Rating

Number of Schools

Percentage of Schools

Accredited

1,682

92%

Accredited Pending Review of Alternative Plan

5

<1%< p>

Accredited With Conditions

132

7%

New School

6

<1%< p>

Total

1,825

100%

The 1,682 schools with an overall rating of Accredited include 61 schools with waivers from annual accreditation based on previous high performance that otherwise would have been rated as Accredited with Conditions.

Every school under the 2017 accreditation regulations — regardless of performance — must develop a multiyear plan to support continuous improvement on each school quality indicator. The revised accreditation standards require the following specific local and state actions to improve performance on each indicator:

  • Level One – School and division continue to monitor the indicator and the school's multiyear plan for continuous improvement.
  • Level Two – School and division implement essential actions and research-based strategies to improve performance on the indicator to Level One. If at Level Two for overall performance in English, mathematics or science, school must also undergo an academic review conducted by VDOE or under department guidance.
  • Level Three – School undergoes an academic review conducted by VDOE or under its guidance. School and school division – in consultation with VDOE – develop and implement a corrective action plan.

School divisions that do not demonstrate evidence of progress in adopting or implementing corrective action plans for a school or schools with indicators at Level Three will be required to enter into a memorandum of understanding between the local school board and the state Board of Education defining responsibilities and essential actions to improve performance.

School-by-school school quality indicator data and accreditation ratings are available on updated online School Quality Profile reports and on the VDOE website.