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Brownwood ISD fourth graders work to improve academic ratings

By Betty Nguyen, bnguyen@ktxs.com
Published On: Sep 12 2013 05:57:32 PM CDT
Updated On: Sep 13 2013 11:42:15 AM CDT
BROWNWOOD, Texas -

State test results released last month showed a Brownwood elementary school falling below state standards.

Out of the eight schools in the Brownwood district, Coggin Elementary School, a stand-alone campus of solely fourth graders, was the only one that did not meet expectations of the Texas Education Agency's 2013 accountability ratings system.

"We're going to continue to work and focus on improvement," Brownwood ISD Superintendent Dr. Reece Blincoe said.

Blincoe said teachers are helping students do well on their next exams by reviewing standardized practice tests and easing mindsets.

"The first thing students need is confidence. We try to help them become comfortable so when they come into the testing environment, they'll do okay."

Teachers will also be using advanced software to analyze how many kids got which questions correct and incorrect and why they chose the answers they did.  

Blincoe said failing to meet state standards the second time around would mean trouble for Brownwood ISD. "You get more closely monitored by our state agency. You have to put additional resources into the campus. You can essentially determine whether teachers stay or teachers go. It brings on more academic challenges. We're not going to think like that though. We're going to make these improvements. We're going come out of this and we're going to be just fine." He said he wants the students to flourish by the time they reach the high school level.

Students will take their State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) exams in April and May. This the first year for the Texas Education Agency to use a "Met Requirements" or "Improvements Needed" rating system, which Blincoe said he is in favor of. However, this new school year will be rated similarly to a grading system.