Gains and setbacks for Roanoke City schools vying for accreditation

The Virginia Department of Education released 2016-2017 SOL scores Tuesday.

By Heather Butterworth - Digital Content Producer

ROANOKE, Va. - The Virginia Department of Education released test results for the 2016-2017 school year on Tuesday. Here's what that means for the six Roanoke City schools that did not meet Standards of Learning pass rate requirements last year. 

SOL results are used to determine which schools are accredited. The accreditation ratings for each school are set to be announced mid-September. 

Lucy Addison Middle was partially accredited as a warned school last year, which means it was not within a narrow margin of receiving full accreditation and was not making acceptable progress toward that goal. 

Addison saw some significant improvements in their 2016-2017 SOL scores compared to 2015-2016. Although 6th grade reading scores dropped 5 percent, 7th grade scores jumped by 6 percent and 8th grade scores increased by 14 percent. Eighth grade writing scores leaped a whole 15 percentage points. 

Other areas remained relatively unchanged, but Addison also saw gains in 8th grade science, with an 8-point increase. 

This could all mean a change for the better when schools are evaluated for accreditation. 

Breckinridge Middle was partially accredited last year, but was close to meeting the benchmarks to become fully accredited. 

The good news: Seventh grade math scores went up by 6 percent, and 7th grade reading scores went up by 5 percent. Geometry went up a whole 9 percentage points. 

The bad: Scores on the Civics & Econ decreased by 7 percent and Algebra I results dropped 7 points. There was a whole 15-point drop in 8th grade math scores, and a 5-point decrease in both 8th grade science and Earth Science. 

Other areas remained relatively unchanged. 

Garden City Elementary was partially accredited last year as a reconstituted school, which means it failed to meet requirements for full accreditation four consecutive years. 

Overall, the school showed great improvements. History & Social Sciences scores increased by 12 percent, and 4th grade English results increased by 15 percent. Other test scores also improved, with the exception of a 5-point drop for 5th grade science. 

Hurt Park Elementary was in the same situation as Garden City, with partial accreditation as a reconstituted school. 

Although the school showed a solid 15-point gain in both 4th grade and 5th grade reading scores, the other results were dismal. 

There was a 19-point drop for 5th grade science, a 16-point drop for 4th grade math, and a 6-point drop for 5th grade math. Other scores remained relatively unchanged. 

Stonewall Jackson Middle was partially accredited as a warned school last year. These new SOL results looked promising, as the school made great strides. 

The biggest gains were in the following areas: 6th grade reading (16-point increase), 8th grade reading (12-point increase), an impressive 28-point gain in 8th grade writing, Civics & Econ (14-point increase) geometry (14-point increase), a massive 31-point gain in 8th grade math, and a 13-point increase 8th grade science. 

Westside Elementary received partial accreditation last year as a reconstituted school. 

Overall, the school showed strong improvement in the humanities and a slide in math and science. 

Reading scores were up, with a 13-point increase for 3rd grade, a 10-point increase for 4th grade, and an 8-point increase for 5th grade.

"A couple of years ago went out in a new reading series. You never see much the first year. But it has proved to be a great decision," Dr. Rita Bishop said, Superintendent. 

There was a 6-point decrease in both 3rd and 4th grade math scores, while other scores remained steady. 

"I think the achievement gap is closing in English. We need to do more in mathematics because my staff, certainly I can not smile until there is no achievement gap," Dr. Bishop said. 

Click here for a full list of SOL test scores.

Copyright 2017 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.