Ranking Arizona schools
Arizona Republic
Oct. 25, 2006


Ranking Arizona schools
Here's the formula the state uses to rank schools:

Who: For each school, the state includes AIMS test scores of students who are in third through eighth grade and high school, and who have attended the entire year. It does not include test scores of students who are still in their first three years of learning English. advertisement

What: This year, the state used AIMS math and reading test scores. Writing scores were unstable this year, so schools were permitted to use last year's scores with the state's approval.

How:

Overall improvement: A school gets credit for increasing the number of students who pass the AIMS test over three years.

Individual student growth: A school gets credits for the number of individual students who improved their AIMS scores from 2005 to 2006, even if they did not pass the test. (All student math scores were used, not just those who attended all year.)

High schools also get credit for increasing graduation rates and decreasing dropout rates.

Schools get extra credit for the number of students who reach the highest AIMS grade, called "exceeds."

A school gets extra credit if it passed the federal standards, known as "adequate yearly progress." Schools were not docked if they missed the 2006 federal standards because of new rules that required a school to add the scores of students just learning English and discounted some scores from special education students.

Information: For a school's federal and state rankings, scores and an explanation of the federal and state formula, see the Arizona Department of Education home page www.ade.az.gov and link to "School/District/AZ Report Cards."