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School board recognizes top PASS scorers

Posted: September 4, 2014 5:10 p.m.
Updated: September 5, 2014 6:00 a.m.
Photo provided by the KCSD/

Thirty-nine Kershaw County School District students achieved the highest possible scores on the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) tests during the 2013-14 school year. Of those, 19 students achieved the maximum PASS scores in English, nine in math, eight in writing and two in science. Two students -- Jasmine Glover from Blaney Elementary School and Andrew Lagmo from Doby’s Mill Elementary School -- had perfect PASS scores in both English and Math. Thirty-two of the students were recognized at this week’s school board meeting.

 

The Kershaw County Board of School Trustees dedicated much of its meeting Tuesday to the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) and High School Assessment Program (HSAP) tests.

The meeting started with the recognition of a group of 32 of 39 county students who scored perfect scores on at least one section of the PASS. Each student was called up individually to receive a certificate for their achievement.

The 39 students are:

• Bethune Elementary -- Carrie Eubanks

• Blaney Elementary -- Hadden Daniels, Jasmine Glover and Erin McCarley

• Camden Elementary -- Olivia Bishop and Miguel Davila

• Doby’s Mill Elementary -- Matthew Coleman, Andrew Langmo, Wyatt Tanner and Mason Williams

• Lugoff Elementary -- Gregory Brunson, Drew Hanson, Malachi Matthews, Sara McCaskill, Banks Munn, Elijah Rippy, Jordan Sherman and John Watson.

• Wateree Elementary -- Orion Baker, Emma Collins, Jaimie Marksbary, Zachary Munger and Jessica Ross.

• Camden Middle School -- Andrew Boyles, Carolyn Inabinet, Chance King, Hunter McCoy and Sarah Wohlwinder

• Jackson School -- Justin McCaskill and Indius Williams

• Leslie M. Stover Middle -- Brittney Haynes, Sean Place, Jonathan Richardson and Riley Watson

• Lugoff Elgin Middle -- Katie Clippard and Alex Stribling

• North Central Middle -- Laken Gross, Daisy Noyola and Courtney Spann

“To say that this is a ‘big deal’ is not an exaggeration,” KCSD Superintendent Dr. Frank Morgan said in a press release about the PASS recognition. “This is a tremendous achievement.”

After the recognition, the board heard and commented on a report of PASS/HSAP results, presented by Kershaw County School District (KCSD) Director for Student Assessment Lavoy Carter. The presentation included a brief description of the differences between the 2014 PASS Research and Reading and Math tests and the 2013 tests.

Carter said the 2014 tests did not include items unique to South Carolina standards. Instead, those items were substituted with ones more in line with Common Core State Standards and prior South Carolina standards, which caused a decline in the number of students scoring “Met” and above in English Language Arts and math.

Carter also said that new standards will be applied for the 2014-2015 tests.

“Teachers do not know what will be on the PASS tests before they are given, so we will continue to teach the standards,” Morgan said.

Although 2014 saw a decline in the improvement to “Met” and above scores, Kershaw County students scored above state scores in 22 of 30 areas.

PASS scores in English Language Arts, writing and math that improved from “Met” to “Exemplary” in Kershaw County’s school district were almost 20 percent higher than the state’s.

HSAP results for district students put them above all districts in the Midlands area, although there was a slight decline from 2013 to 2014 in the percentage of students who passed the math section. The percentage of students who passed the math section in 2013 was 84.7 percent and the 2014 percentage was 80.6 percent.

Following Carter’s presentation, the board introduced an action plan for improvement. A detailed five-year plan for each individual school is written out in the Sept. 2 meeting agenda packet. The district has plans to increase the percentage of students to 75 percent who are reading and performing math at their grade levels by 2018.

Also Tuesday, the board considered a proposal for a one-year pilot program designed to give private and homeschooled students access to gifted programs on a space available basis. The board voted in favor of the proposal after it was presented by Dr. Alisa Goodman, KSCD director for K-12 instructional support systems, and after the board established that the district would not incur any charges.

In other business:

• The board held a brief discussion about the S.C. School Boards Association’s law conference that several trustees attended.

• The board discussed enrollment figures and approved a facility request for B2D2 Productions.

• Trustees voted to go into an executive session and later returned and voted unanimously on personnel issues.

The board’s next meeting will take place Sept. 16 at the Kershaw County District Office in the board room.

 

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