The New Albany School District earned an “A” rating for its performance in the 2021-2022 school year. The Mississippi State Board of Education the formally approve the grades for Mississippi schools and districts on Thursday, September 29.
Mississippi’s schools and districts are graded on an A-F scale. The grades are part of the state’s accountability system, which helps teachers, school leaders, parents and communities know how well local schools and districts are serving students.
The New Albany School District’s improved grade is largely due to the progress students made during the 2021-2022 school year rebounding after achievement declined in the first year of the pandemic.
New Albany School District is ranked #7 in the state overall out of 145 (districts and charter schools). The district is ranked #12 in overall reading growth and #22 in overall math growth. Regarding proficiency, New Albany School District ranked in the top 20 in all four proficiency areas:
- #8 in History Proficiency
- #12 in Math Proficiency
- #15 in Science Proficiency
- #17 in Reading Proficiency
New Albany High School earned an “A” rating. NAHS has a 95% graduation rate that is ranked #7 in the state. Proficiency on the U.S. History test taken by eleventh graders was 89% with a #8 ranking in the state. The acceleration rate for NAHS was 92.5% due in part to national certification attainment and successful dual enrollment programming.
New Albany Middle School earned a “B” rating and showed exceptional growth in mathematics with 74.3% following a pandemic that disrupted school instruction for three years.
New Albany Elementary School earned an “A” rating with 78.6% growth in reading and 77.3% growth in math.
“We are so excited to retain the designation of being an “A” rated school district. Not only did we retain that status, our district grew 56 accountability points from our previous rating,” said Dr. Lance Evans, Superintendent. “This is the first-time ratings have been released since 2019. Continuing to be an ‘A’ rated school district after three years of unprecedented times for school districts and educators is remarkable.”
Evans praised teachers, staff, administrators, and school board members for the effort given to continue instruction in virtual platforms, hybrid scheduling, and school shutdowns.
Evans also explained the importance of the school district being an “A” rated school district while also remaining focused on workforce development and STEM education initiatives and providing students opportunities in athletics, fine arts, and leadership activities.
Statewide, Mississippi students made more progress than they typically do in one year as schools focused on accelerating learning after the first year of the pandemic. However, key factors including a student achievement decline in 2020-2021, testing waivers, and one-year adjustments to the accountability system played a role in 2021-2022 school and district grades.
Mississippi’s school grading system considers many indicators, including how well students perform on Mississippi Academic Assessment Program (MAAP) tests for English Language Arts and Mathematics in grades 3-8 and high school, whether students are showing improvement on those tests from year to year, and whether students are graduating within four years. The system also factors in performance on the ACT and advanced high school courses and how well schools are helping English learners and the lowest-achieving students make progress toward proficiency.