South KC Schools receive high APR scores

By John Sharp

All four public school districts that serve major parts of south Kansas City scored significantly higher on their 2018 Annual Progress Reports (APRs) that were released to the public on February 1 by the Missouri Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE) than they did for the prior year, and in some cases for many years.

DESE monitors five areas to create the annual reports:  academic achievement, attendance, college and career readiness, graduation rate, and subgroup achievement.

The Center School District earned 108.5 out of 120 possible points for the 2017-18 school year for a percentage score of 90.4 percent, an increase from 82.1 percent for the 2016-17 school year.  Center got 100 percent of the possible 30 points allowed for graduation rates. Its lowest percentage score was 75 percent of the possible 10 points for attendance.

“We are proud to be recognized as a top tier school district in the state by earning more than 90 percent of the possible points,” said Dr. Sharon Nibbelink, Center school superintendent. “The credit goes to our teachers and staff who model dedication and passion for student learning.”

The Grandview School District earned 108.2 out of 120 possible points, just barely below Center for a percentage score of 90.2 percent, an increase from 79.3 percent for 2016-17.  This is the highest score for the district since 2013.

Grandview got 95 percent of the possible 30 points allowed for graduation rates.  Its lowest percentage scores were 75 percent of the possible 10 points for attendance and for subgroup performance.

Dr. Kenny Rodrequez, Grandview superintendent, said the 2018 score validates the hard work district personnel have done in the past few years.  “We are proud of the work that has been done in the area of college and career readiness,” he added.

The Hickman Mills School District earned 92.7 out of 120 possible points for a percentage score of 77.3 percent, its highest percentage in five years, putting it on track to regain full accreditation.  Districts are expected to earn at least 70 percent of the possible points two years in a row before the Missouri State Board of Education votes to grant a district full accreditation based on its APR score and DESE staff recommendations.  The district currently is provisionally accredited.

“We will continue our laser-like focus on reaching full accreditation,” said Dr. Yolanda Cargile, Hickman Mills superintendent.

Hickman Mills got 100 percent of the possible 30 points allowed for graduation rates and 85 percent of the 30 points allowed for college and career readiness.  Its lowest percentage score was 60 percent of the possible 10 points for attendance.

The Kansas City Public Schools (KCPS) earned 99.5 out of 120 possible points for a percentage score of 82.9 percent, also putting it on track to regain full accreditation.  The district had lost provisional accreditation in 2011, gaining that back in 2014. Its percentage score for the 2016-17 school year was 63.9 percent.

KCPS got 90 percent of the possible 10 points allowed for subgroup achievement and 87.5 percent of the possible 40 points for academic achievement.  Its lowest percentage was 60 percent of the possible 10 points for attendance.

The district got 85 percent of the 30 possible points for college and career readiness, and Superintendent Dr. Mark Bedell said, “I would suggest that this is one of the most important categories measured by the state.  These results demonstrate that we are truly preparing our students to succeed after graduation.”

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