Harvest: Schools share success stories

March 29, 2009

The Harvest Foundation recently heard results of its $5 million K-12 Education Initiative awarded in 2003 to improve K-12 school education. Included in the presentations were various success stories in the Martinsville and Henry County schools and Carlisle, all of which received funds through the intitiative. Following are highlights of those stories, as detailed in a Harvest news release:


• Third-graders with learning disabilities passing reading SOLs.

The federal government’s No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 requires that all students be proficient in math and reading by 2014. When SOL testing began in 2002-03, 14 percent of the city’s third graders with learning disabilities passed their reading SOLs; in 2007-08, 78 percent passed.

• Fifth-graders passing reading SOLs.

Reading SOLs in 2007-08 show that the education gap is closing for all fifth-graders. In 2002-03, 24 percent of city students with learning disabilities passed the fifth-grade reading SOLs, as did 60 percent of black students and 81 percent of white students. In 2007-08, all students passed at 81 percent.

• High school students earning advanced diplomas.

Among the school system’s goals was to increase the number of black students pursuing advanced diplomas by 10 percent. Between 2005-06 and 2007-08, that rate rose by 17 percent.


• Fifth-graders passing math SOLs.

A large education gap existed between white students and their black and learning disabled counterparts. In 2002-03, 57 percent of learning disabled students, 59 percent of black students and 73 percent of white students passed their math SOLs. In 2007-08, those numbers rose to 87 percent, 94 percent and 92 percent, respectively.

• Students passing Algebra I SOLs.

The education gap between white students and black and learning disabled students closed significantly. In 2002-03, 55 percent of students with learning disabilities passed, as did 78 percent of black students and 84 percent of white students. By 2007-08, those numbers rose to 98 percent, 96 percent and 96 percent, respectively.


• Carlisle reading scores versus national average in grades 1-8.

Carlisle students are measured against the IOWA Test for Basic Skills, a national exam. Third-grade students nationally score at the 50th percentile. Carlisle’s goal was to be in the 70th percentile in math, language and reading, a goal that it reached in all grades except 7th.

• High school students taking the International Baccalaureate end-of-course exams have scored slightly above the world average.


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