Chambersburg school district met progress goals, but some schools fall short

July 17, 2008|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- The Chambersburg Area School District met adequate yearly progress (AYP) goals in the latest Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) reading and math tests scores, though six of 19 schools failed to make the grade, according to a preliminary analysis from the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Under federal No Child Left Behind guidelines, schools had to achieve proficiency rates of 56 percent in math and 63 percent in reading. Overall, Chambersburg's proficiency rate was 66.7 percent in math and 67.2 percent in reading.

The district's scores in 2006-07 were 65.4 percent in math and 64.9 percent in reading, according to the Department of Education.

"While we still have a lot of work to do to ensure all our students are proficient in math and reading, we are pleased that as a district, we showed significant improvement," Superintendent Joseph Padasak was quoted as say in a district news release.


Chambersburg, with more than 8,500 students, is the largest district in Franklin County. Director of Information Services Sylvia Rockwood said the district is judged on 153 different measures, including the number of schools, grade levels and measurable subgroups of 40 or more students within schools, including special education and socially and economically disadvantaged students, she said.

"We met AYP in 80 percent of those, and 70 percent showed improvement over last year," Rockwood said. "I think that's the biggest success for the school district this year."

Chambersburg Area Senior High School, Faust Junior High School and Chambersburg Area Middle School once again missed their targets. Three elementary schools - Hamilton Heights, Scotland and Stevens - either failed to hit the proficiency goals in math and reading or make adequate yearly progress.

The high school's math scores slipped from 60.8 percent proficiency to 60.2 percent. In reading, scores dipped from 71.4 percent to 64.5 percent. The high school failed to make goal or meet AYP because some of its subgroups failed to meet AYP, Rockwood said.

At Faust, math scores fell from 68.6 percent to 67.7 percent, while reading improved from 72.4 percent proficiency to 76.7 percent. At CAMS, math dipped from 63.1 percent proficiency to 61.7, while reading was almost unchanged at 61.5 percent.

Reading scores at Hamilton Heights improved 12 percent, from 56.9 percent to 68.9 percent, but math scores fell from 63.5 percent to 60.6 percent. At Scotland Elementary School, where there is a high percentage of special education students, math scores improved from 67.9 percent to 71 percent, but reading fell from 62.6 percent to 60 percent.

Stevens Elementary School, where most of the students are economically disadvantaged, saw proficiency in math advance from 48.6 percent to 55.5 percent, but reading scores fell from 45.7 percent to 45.4 percent.

Individually, some schools performed very well, including U.L. Gordy, which no longer exists and whose students are attending Fayetteville Elementary until the new Benjamin Chambers School is completed in early 2009. Students improved their reading scores by 16.7 percent to 70 percent and reading scores jumped 11.1 percent to 66.7 percent.

King Street, which will close when Chambers opens, did even better. Math scores went from 42.9 percent to 61.2 percent. Many of the school's students are Hispanic and reading scores soared from 31.4 percent to 51 percent.

The district's highest scores were delivered by the students of Coldbrook Elementary. There, the math scores rose from 83.6 percent to 89.4 percent proficiency. Coldbrook reading proficiency was 83.3 percent.

How the schools scored

Math Reading Met AYP

2006-07 2007-08 2006-07 2007-08 2008

CASD 65.4 66.7 64.9 67.2 Y

BUCHANAN 75.4 77.8 67.7 76.3 Y

CAMS 63.1 61.7 61.6 61.5 N

CASHS 60.8 60.2 71.4 64.5 N

COLDBROOK 83.5 89.4 83.9 83.3 Y

FALLING SPRING 67.5 67.5 64.1 74.8 Y

FAUST JHS 68.6 67.7 72.4 76.7 N

FAYETTEVILLE 73.8 82.9 60.2 73.8 Y

GORDY 55.6 66.7 53.3 70 Y

GRANDVIEW 79.4 72.6 72.5 71.7 Y

GUILFORD HILLS 68.4 74.8 75.6 75.7 Y

HAMILTON HEIGHTS 63.5 60.6 56.9 68.9 N

KING STREET 42.9 61.2 31.4 51 Y

LURGAN H 69.2 69.7 61.5 74.3 Y

MARION 88.3 76.6 78.3 76.6 Y

NEW FRANKLIN 73.2 79.6 65.9 67.3 Y

SCOTLAND 67.9 71 62.6 60 N

SHARPE 75 82.8 71.9 81 Y

SOUTH HAMILTON 79.1 77.9 67 66.9 Y

STEVENS 48.6 55.5 45.7 45.4 N

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