BY CURTIS CARDEN, Elizabethton Star
The last three years has showcased a quick increase in student development at one city elementary school.
State Department of Education officials recently announced the statistics of the Tennessee Value-Added Assessment System (TVAAS), a system used to measure student growth year over year, regardless of the student’s proficiency on the state assessment.
Progress has been an understatement for the work at Harold McCormick Elementary. The school earned a Level 5 composite score during this year’s results — the highest a school can receive. HME has studied progress over the years by receiving a Level 1 in 2016 and Level 3 last year.
According to information provided by the state, officials calculate a TVAAS score by accessing a student’s performance compared to the performance of his or her peers that have performed similarly on past assessments.
The state added “because students’ performance is compared to that of their peers, and because their peers are moving through the same standards and assessment transitions at the same time, any drops in proficiency during these transitions have no impact on the ability of teachers, schools, and districts to earn strong TVAAS scores. Transitions to higher standards and expectations do not change the fact that we still want students to make a full year’s worth of growth, relative to their peers who are all experiencing the same transition.”
HME staff held an assembly near the start of the school year to praise the efforts of the students and teachers for their work at the school. The event was led by Eric Wampler, interim director of Early Learning, Curriculum & Testing 6-12, Attendance and Data Services, and Tom Hopson, interim HME principal.
“We cannot become complacent with our score,” Wampler said at the event. “We have done a fantastic job, but we’re still moving and growing. We want to be right back here next year, and we can do it if we are at school every day working together.”
Wampler served as the HME principal up until this year. He was moved to his interim position to help fill the role left by Travis Thompson, who is currently on military leave from ECS. Hopson is at HME in the meantime.
Wampler attributed the school’s growth to the dedication of students and teachers during and after school and also noted the success of the new character program Just Bee Awesome.
“I am very proud of what our faculty, staff and students have accomplished over the last three years at HME,” Wampler said. “Our teachers have been working diligently at moving our students forward in order to achieve recognition in growth. All three of our elementary schools are working together through important initiatives that will continue to enhance growth and achievement among our faculty, staff and students.”
Visit www.tn.gov/education/data/tvaas.html to learn more about TVAAS scores. Further updates on TNReady schools from the district and schools will appear in future editions of the Elizabethton Star.