The Alaska Department of Education and Early Development released this year’s school ratings earlier this month. Dillingham Schools faired very well, improving across the board. This is part of the Alaska School Performance Index.
The ASPI was adopted by the state in 2013. The index rates schools on a 100 point scale. The points are awarded based on test scores, improvement on tests, attendance, standardized tests and graduation rates. The schools are the given ratings based on a scale of one-five, five being the best.
Information officer for the state of Alaska’s Department of Education and Early Development Eric Fry says the ASPI model is what the state proposed as an alternative to No Child Left Behind.
“Every state that applied for a waiver did that independently. That being said we did look at some of the other models to see what other states were getting approved to do. But when it came down to our final model this is what—it’s pretty close to what we proposed. There were some things we had to negotiate. Each time we would send them a new model they would ask us for the impact data, so how many schools would be impacted, we had different ratings. It was a negotiation process but we’re really happy with where we’re at.”
Dillingham City Schools all saw improvements. Dillingham Correspondence was bumped up from a four star rating in 2012-2013 to a five star rating in 2013-2014. Dillingham Elementary maintained a three star rating but increased its ASPI score from 82.6 to 83.48. Dillingham Middle and High School also maintained its three star rating but increased from 65.94 to 67.6.
Bristol Bay Borough Schools also saw an increase. Naknek Elementary bumped up from 83.47 to 86.75 and the middle and high school saw a slight increase from 80.02 to 80.6.
Fry says the state as a whole has been doing better according to ASPI.
“Last year we had 53 schools at a five star rating. This year we have 75. Last year we had 189 four star schools and this year we have 198. And the number of one star schools in 2013, we had 49 and we only had 27 this year. So I’d say it shows a pretty positive trend.”
The majority of Alaska’s schools fell in the four star ASPI rating. Fry says he’s optimistic about next year’s numbers as well.