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Bradford notches 5’s in state growth measures

By Crystal Burns

Bradford Elementary School and the Bradford Special School District scored 5’s in the overall growth composite for the 2017-18 school year.

The Tennessee Department of Education recently released the Tennessee Value-Added Assessment System (TVAAS) scores, which measure student growth year over year, regardless of whether the student is proficient on the state assessment. In calculating a TVAAS score, a student’s performance is compared relative to the performance of his or her peers who have performed similarly on past assessments. Three indicates one year of growth; 1 and 2 is less than a year, and 4 and 5 represent more than a year of growth.

The elementary school scored 5 in Literacy, 5 in Numeracy, 5 in Literacy and Numeracy, 4 in Science and 5 in Social Studies for an overall score of 5.

Bradford High School scored 3 in Literacy, 5 in Numeracy, 4 in Literacy and Numeracy, 1 in Science and 3 in Social Studies for an overall score of 3.

The district notched overall scores of 4 in Literacy, 5 in Numeracy, 5 in Literacy and Numeracy, 2 in Science and 5 in Social Studies for a composite score of 5.

“I’m very pleased with what we did,” Director of Schools Dan Black said at the Aug. 27 school board meeting. “The elementary school really did a good job. They improved significantly in a number of areas.”

BES principal Kelly Knott said the faculty and staff work hard to serve their students.

“They want to do the best they can for our students,” she said. “Everybody wants to do their best.”

Students are rewarded for making gains throughout the year, but they also know their school’s Level 5 status is cause for special celebration.

“Our kids are excited about it,” Knott said.

Earlier this summer, the state released achievement scores from TNReady and End of Course tests. Bradford High School ranks second in the state in the percentage of students who were On Track or Mastered with 58 percent. Bradford was ninth in the state in 6-8 grade math with 55 percent of students testing On Track or Mastered and fourth in 6-8 grade English Language Arts (ELA) in growth with 42.3 percent, increasing 5.8 percent from last year.

Bradford students performed better than the state averages (in parenthesis) in 10 of 13 categories:

3-8 ELA 37.1% (33.9)

6-8 ELA 42.3% (32.1)

3-8 Math 46.4% (37.2)

6-8 Math 55% (34.6)

3-5 Science 84.6% (56)

3-8 Science 68.8% (59.1)

6-8 Science 64.1% (60.2)

High School ELA 34.5% (29.4)

High School Math 58% (22.5)

High School U.S. History 45.9% (27.3)

Bradford fared less well than the state averages in 3-5 ELA – 31.4% (35.7), 3-5 Math – 37.2% (40), and High School Science – 44.8% (45.3).

Black said that BHS continues to be one of the top performing schools in West Tennessee, but he admitted that even teachers were “a little shocked” at their English results. While he didn’t give students any excuses, he noted that they had three different science teachers last year, which made for unexpected transitions.

Grants – Jerry Diviney told school board members the district has received two safety grants from the state. One grant nearly doubled, increasing from $3500 last year to $6800 this year. The district will use the funds to upgrade its camera surveillance systems.

The district also received $16,900 that Diviney said would fund three or four projects. One is to purchase anti-ballistic film to cover all windows. The film slows down would-be intruders by making it more difficult and time-consuming to break the glass.

The board approved spending $5,948 to match the grants.

Enrollment – Black said enrollment is up from last year. There are 538 students attending Bradford schools, a gain of about 20.

Board member takes oath – Prior to the board meeting, Charles Cowen took the oath of office. Cowen was elected to his first term in August. Ricky Bratton was re-elected.

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