Dayton City School Director Trish Newsom gave out the Character Awards for Students prior to the Dayton City School Board meeting. Pictured, from left to right, are August Calloway K-2 winner; David Velasco 3-5 grade winner and Adult Winner Adrianne Chancey. This month's word was Responsibility.
Dayton City School, along with Athens and Meigs County Schools, were designated top schools for the 2021-22 school year, which includes the highest performing schools and districts for academic achievement and student growth. Across the state, 427 schools spanning 92 districts received designation as a Reward school, and 16 districts received designation as an Exemplary district.
An Exemplary District is based on factors like achievement, growth, and attendance. Dayton City School students and staff came together to celebrate by hosting an academic pep rally to recognize the hard work and success over the last couple of years.
Director Trish Newsom expressed how proud she is of the teachers, staff, students, and families. “The hard work and perseverance of our school community have paid off. The last two years have been difficult, but everyone pressed forward knowing that if we worked hard, we would overcome.
We did that. It is a great time to be a DCS Sweatbee. Dayton City School is proud to be recognized at the highest level as a provider of “Exemplary” education to our community."
Each year, schools are eligible for four types of designations based on their overall performance across indicators that are essential to student success, including how the school prepared students to be proficient (Achievement), accelerated student learning (Growth), encouraged students to attend school regularly (Chronically out of School), prepared students for postsecondary success (Graduation Rate and Ready Graduate), and supported English learners acquiring language skills.
Schools are recognized as a Reward school when they show high levels of performance and/or improvement in performance by meeting their annual measurable objectives across performance indicators and student groups, and the Reward school distinction places significant emphasis on improvement from the prior school year. From the 2020-21 TCAP administration, a significant number of schools saw improvement and increased participation in this year’s assessments to qualify for the distinction.
“Tennessee students, families, educators, and school communities have worked hard to overcome a variety of challenges stemming from the pandemic and I congratulate them on their efforts," said Commissioner Penny Schwinn. “Our teachers and school and district leaders focus on helping students improve every day and we will continue to focus on student achievement, as well as growth, so that all students are set on a path to success.”
The complete list of district and school designations, including Reward schools and schools exiting Priority or Focus status, is posted on the department's Accountability webpage.
In addition to recognizing Reward schools, the department also named Priority schools and Focus schools. Priority schools, also federally designated as Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) schools, were the bottom five percent of the schools across state due to multiple years of low academic performance. Focus schools, which are federally designated as either Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI) or Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI), are also identified based on school performance among student groups. Additional support and fundings will be provided to the identified Priority and Focus schools next school year for school improvement purposes.
School districts also receive designations based on their performance and/or demonstration of improvement on the same set of school performance measures. These preliminary designations are available on the department’s accountability page and will be presented to the State Board of Education for approval at the October 28th quarterly meeting.