Return to Headlines

CHCCS Receives Positive News on State Tests

The State Board of Education released accountability results for schools yesterday, along with the four-year Cohort Graduation Rate for the class of 2019.

Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools posted gains in nearly all overall measures.

In 2018-19, growth was strong across the district. For 2018-19, 94.4% of CHCCS schools met or exceeded growth, up from 77.8% in 2017-18. The same high percentage of schools scored an A or B, up from 88.8%. For the state, 75% of schools met or exceeded growth, and 37.3% of N.C. schools earned an A or B.

The state began designating letter grades to all public schools in 2013-14. The grades are based on proficiency (80%) and growth (20%), the gains on end-of-year exams (EOG’s and EOC’s) in math and reading. Growth is calculated with a statistical model comparing every student’s predicted score, based on past scores, against the actual test result.

Across the district, all groups of Black and Latinx students either met or exceeded growth. In fact, grades were up for nearly all groups. Recall that grades include both proficiency and growth. As in past years, the performance scores for Black and Latinx students and other subgroups, including exceptional children and English learners, are still underperforming compared to White and Asian students, but the District made notable progress this year.

Last year, 12 groups did not meet or exceed growth; this year that number was reduced to five. In addition, 46 were “Exceeded” as opposed to only ten last year. Each school can have grades for up to nine groups. Not all schools had enough students to reflect a grade for each group.

Superintendent Pam Baldwin lauded the work of our teachers, and also pointed to the entire district’s adherence to a strategic plan for student success.

“We are very pleased to see our growth rates, graduation rates and school grades on the rise. This is a testament to the quality instruction provided in our classrooms. Our teachers and staff take their work very seriously, and these scores are a direct result of their efforts,” said Baldwin. “We have a strategic plan that was designed by our community and is guiding our work. We will continue to follow the plan and make progress toward our goal of EVERY student experiencing success.”

There are two achievement composites reported. The composite with only level 4 and 5 scores is “Career and College Ready” (CCR) and with levels 3, 4 and 5, is “Grade Level Proficiency” (GLP). The composite includes achievement from reading, math and science.

It is important to note that over the past summer, a team of educators from across the state developed scoring standards for a new math assessment with new cutoffs for proficiency. There are no longer five levels of achievement, but instead there are four levels. The math scores for the State and CHCCS students decreased slightly. 

The overall composite for CHCCS students was 65.5% Career and College Ready. This represents a drop from last year’s 68.6% down 3.1 percentage points. The statewide composite for 2018-19 was 44.5, while in 2017-18, it was 49.2%, down 4.7 percentage points. These scores declined statewide due to the impact of the new math scale. 

When students who scored at a level 3 are added to those numbers, 75.5% of CHCCS students are considered Grade Level Proficient. This is a slight increase from last year’s 74.2%. The state average was 58.8%.

The District met 64, or 24.2%, of 265 goals for ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act). These long term goals are intended to close achievement gaps between high and low performing subgroups. 

The four-year cohort graduation rate stands at 90.9%, up from 90.3% last year. The average for the state was 86.5%, a slight increase from the previous year’s 86.3%.

“We have a lot to celebrate, and our work continues,” said Dr. Baldwin.

For more information about state testing and accountability, please visit: