District earns 99.6% on state report

Mehlville School District earns near perfect score on Missouri’s Annual Performance Report
Posted on 02/06/2019
Annual Performance Report

Mehlville School District earned a 99.6 percent on the state's annual performance report (APR), ranking among the highest performing public school districts in the St. Louis region and Missouri. Mehlville School District has earned the highest level of accreditation from the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).

The APRs are part of Missouri's school accreditation system, which is known as the Missouri School Improvement Program (MSIP). MSIP is the system used by DESE to review, accredit and recognize districts for academic performance. Based on a school district's performance on a set of five standards established by DESE, a district will be designated as accredited, provisionally accredited or unaccredited. The standards measured are:

• Academic achievement: Overall district performance on Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) state standardized tests
• Subgroup achievement: The achievement of subgroups of students, which includes African American/black students, Hispanic students, students eligible for free/reduced lunch, students with limited English proficiency and students with special education needs
• College and career readiness: Achievement on standardized tests such as the ACT, COMPASS, ASVAB; advanced placement assessments in Advanced Placement classes, Project Lead The Way classes and dual credit classes; and college and career placement following high school graduation
• Attendance rate
• Graduation rate

From 2014-2017, Mehlville's average APR score was 92.4 percent. The 2018 score is the highest ever for the district. Improvements in academic achievement and subgroup achievement scores contributed to the increase in the district's APR score in 2018.

"Achievement scores take into account our average MAP scores over the past three years, year-over-year improvement in MAP scores, and the growth individual students make on MAP tests," said Dr. Brian Smith, assistant superintendent for curriculum, assessment and professional development. "We received more points this year for our individual growth in subgroup achievement in math and English language arts. In 2018, we exceeded the expected growth in these areas."

While he's pleased with the APR score, Superintendent Dr. Chris Gaines cautions that DESE has made numerous changes to the MAP tests, which can cause fluctuations in APR scores.

"Over the past five years, there have been four different tests set to three different sets of standards," Dr. Gaines said. "This makes year-to-year improvement comparisons meaningless."

According to DESE, completely new assessments in English language arts and math were administered in 2017-18 due to changes in learning standards. Therefore, it is important to note that the 2017-18 results are not comparable with results from previous tests in those subjects. More than 2,500 Missouri teachers and other stakeholders crafted the Missouri Learning Standards that were adopted in spring 2016. The new standards were developed with a goal of setting higher expectations for students, which was reflected in a more challenging, teacher-developed set of state assessments.

District "report card" data compiled by DESE is available on the DESE website.

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