Here’s my annual update regarding our academic performance as a district, as measured by the publication Buffalo Business First using data from the NYSED website and ranked within the 96 school districts of WNY. There’s no mystery to the rankings, they are based on four years of Regents diploma rates, as well as four years of results from 24 grades 3-8 and Regents tests, considering the percentage of students who met or exceeded (achieved 3s & 4s or 85 and above) state standards on each. There is more weight given to the most recent of the four years. It’s data, plain and simple, and it is the one time per year we have a comprehensive review of how our students are performing as compared to all other students in Western New York.
For those of you who may ask, “why does it matter? Why are test scores important?” I would answer, “our performance results are one of the ways we can gauge if we are making good instructional decisions, if we are aligning our system to rigorous standards, if we are helping every child to achieve at the same levels, or better, than students in all other school districts.” In short, we want to do well by the children of the Randolph school district—to do our very best to prepare them for life after school. Here’s one way for us to know if we’re doing so.
Gail N. Chapman Elementary School, led by veteran Principal Jerry Mottern, has seen the most significant gains in the school rankings as the are #59 of 262 public and private elementary schools in WNY. Our elementary students and teachers have increased their achievement results from the 2014 rank of #104, 2013 rank of #174, and 2012 rank of #202. How’s that for increased results Randolph?Next we look at our Randolph Middle School, led by Principal Laurie Sanders, compiled using our 7th and 8th grade Math and ELA and Science results. The MS results rest squarely on the shoulders of a very few teachers and they have worked incredibly hard to maximize learning for their young adolescent students. Here Randolph is up to a WNY rank of #95 out of 194 middle schools. That’s an improvement over the 2014 rank of #121, 2013 rank of #123, and 2012 rank of #145. Nice!
Randolph High School, also led by Principal Laurie Sanders and Assistant Principal Jason Halpainy, realizes improvement, ranking at #63 of 136 WNY high schools. That’s up from the 2014 rank of #66, 2013 rank of #68, and 2012 rank of #82. As our high school teachers begin to see classes entering much better prepared than ever before, we expect to see our Regents results climb as well. And last of course all of these gains positively affect our overall Randolph district rank, with district leaders: Director of Pupil Services Mary Rockey and Curriculum Coordinator Jamie Berg, which comes in at #44 of 96 districts in WNY–realizing a goal set by the BOE to be in the top half of all districts in WNY! Our district rank has climbed from the 2014 rank of #50, 2013 rank of #59, and 2012 rank of #74. Many, many thanks to everyone in our school community who has worked hard to take our students beyond our old expectations for learning–for every teacher who worked hard to learn the “new” math or dissect a new novel, to the parents at home struggling to help with homework or looking up lessons on the engageny website, to the students who have met every new challenge with aplomb and the administrators working every day to both challenge and support their schools–WELL DONE RANDOLPH! What an incredible time to be learning here!