- McGarity Elementary
PCSD Tops State on 19 of 20 Milestones Tests
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 27, 2022
Milestones Test Results Show Pandemic Recovery
Well Under Way in Paulding County Schools
PCSD Tops State in 19 of 20 Subject Areas for Scores of 2, 3, & 4
Recently released results from the 2021-2022 Georgia Milestones Assessment show that following two-plus academic years dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic, Paulding County students are holding the line and are in better shape academically than many of their peers statewide. To summarize PCSD’s performance compared to statewide averages (See Data Charts 1-4):
- Paulding County students scoring at Levels 2, 3, and 4 topped the percentage of students scoring at the same levels statewide on 19 of 20 assessments.
- At the highest two levels, Proficient and Advanced (3 & 4), PCSD students topped the state in 15 of 20 subject areas.
- Across elementary, middle, and high school assessments, Paulding students are beating the state average for reading “on or above grade level” in all grades and courses assessed by the state.
- The percentage of PCSD students scoring at levels 2, 3, and 4 in Biology exceeded the state average by 6 percent in 2022 and showed a 4 percent increase over PCSD’s 2019 pre-pandemic scores.
“The pandemic brought a major disruption to our schools over the last two years,” said Superintendent Steve Barnette. “These Milestones results are a credit to the amazing PCSD teachers who sustained an academic focus, whether in classrooms or virtually, and helped prevent more serious learning loss.”
In the fall of 2020, Paulding County schools were among the first in the nation to offer students an opportunity to return to the classroom for in-person instruction or learn remotely through the Paulding Virtual Academy. Those options remain available today. While some scores have not yet reached pre-pandemic levels, the results clearly show that academic recovery is well under way in Paulding County Schools.
The 2021-2022 Milestones results will serve as a new baseline following the unprecedented challenges brought on by the pandemic. While the results are encouraging and show Paulding County students may be farther along in returning to pre-pandemic academic performance, a comparison to PCSD’s pre-pandemic results shows there is room for improvement – most clearly in the subject of Math and with higher-performing students. Secondary mathematics were hit hardest by pandemic learning, specifically in 5th and 6th grades and high school Algebra 1.
“Many districts across the nation have seen the biggest pandemic impact in secondary math and early childhood literacy,” said PCSD Chief Academic Officer Tiffany Frachiseur. “While the pandemic clearly has had an impact, I am pleased to see our students have essentially held the line through a very difficult stretch. We have effective interventions and resources in place to support students who need them. Now, we are prepared to change the focus and begin to accelerate academic growth. District-wide we are implementing a comprehensive academic plan to make that a reality.”
The district’s five-year Strategic Plan is designed to address the intervention needs of students who have gaps in mastery as well as the acceleration needs of students prepared to move on. The plan also calls for an evaluation of innovative and advanced program offerings with the goal of engaging a wider audience of students in academically challenging programs. Ms. Frachiseur noted a major challenge this school year will be continuing to strike the right balance between maintaining rigorous expectations while also differentiating for students with missing prerequisite skills.
About Georgia Milestones
Students take Georgia Milestones End of Grade (EOG) tests in grades three through eight, and Georgia Milestones End of Course (EOC) tests in identified high school courses. The Georgia Milestones assessment system meets the federal requirement that states test students in math and ELA in grades 3-8 and once in high school, and in science once per grade band (3-5, 6-8, 9-12).
Georgia Milestones assesses student learning along four levels of achievement:
Level 1 - Beginning Learners do not yet demonstrate proficiency in the knowledge and skills necessary at this grade level/course of learning, as specified in Georgia’s content standards. The students need substantial academic support to be prepared for the next grade level or course and to be on track for college and career readiness.
Level 2 - Developing Learners demonstrate partial proficiency in the knowledge and skills necessary at this grade level/course of learning, as specified by Georgia’s content standards. The students need additional academic support to ensure success in the next grade level or course and to be on track for college and career readiness.
Level 3 - Proficient Learners demonstrate proficiency in the knowledge and skills necessary at this grade level/course of learning, as specified in Georgia’s content standards. The students are prepared for the next grade level or course and are on track for college and career readiness.
Level 4 - Distinguished Learners demonstrate advanced proficiency in the knowledge and skills necessary at this grade level/course of learning, as specified in Georgia’s content standards. The students are well prepared for the next grade level or course and are well prepared for college and career readiness.