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For More Information Contact the Public Information Office:
    Kathryn Forsyth, Director

For Release: March 31, 2006

DOE Announces Final AYP

The Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) status of nine school districts, 74 schools and two charter schools has changed because of final No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) calculations for the 2005 testing period, Department of Education officials announced today.

The changes in status include seven districts and five schools that have been removed from the list of those designated as "in need of improvement" under the federal NCLB law.

Forty schools that did not make AYP under the preliminary calculations and had been in "early warning status" did make AYP under the final calculations and have been removed from status altogether.

NCLB requires that before the start of each school year, DOE must release the list of schools and districts designated as being "on need of improvement." The New Jersey DOE uses preliminary calculations of students' scores in the state tests administered in the spring.

During the fall and winter, the results must be re-calculated to include the scores of the alternate proficiency assessments (APAs) administered to students with the most severe disabilities, other NCLB factors (such as attendance and drop-out rates) and appeals of designations by districts or schools.

The seven school districts removed from the 2005 "in need of improvement" list under the final calculations are Teaneck (Bergen County), Orange (Essex County), Hunterdon Central Regional (Hunterdon County), North Brunswick (Middlesex County), Pinelands Regional (Ocean County), Linden (Union County), and Phillipsburg (Warren County).

Schomburg Charter School in Jersey City is also no longer on the list.

Two districts, East Orange (Essex County) and Jersey City (Hudson County), and Lady Liberty Academy Charter School move from year two sanctions to year one hold status. Districts and schools must make AYP two years in a row in order to be taken off the sanctions list.

Today's announcement means that a total of 48 school districts and seven charter schools have been designated as being "in need of improvement" based on their 2005 test scores. Last fall, based on preliminary calculations, DOE reported a total of 63 designated districts.

The five schools moved to early warning status. They are Leeds Avenue Elementary School in Pleasantville (Atlantic County), Sumner School in Camden (Camden County), Middletown High School North in Middletown Township (Monmouth County), Swimming River School in Tinton Falls (Monmouth County), and Haviland Avenue School in Audubon (Camden County).

Under the preliminary calculation, these schools did not make AYP in 2005; under the re-calculation, they did.

Only one school - Columbia Senior High School in the South Orange-Maplewood school district - went to a higher level of sanctions, from year two "hold status" (preliminary calculations indicated that the students had made AYP in 2005 after not making it for three years in a row) to year three sanctions.

Thirteen schools thought to have made AYP under the initial calculations did not make it when the scores were re-calculated and were placed on the early warning list.

Under the final calculations, 539 of New Jersey's 2,398 schools were designated as "in need of improvement" for 2005.

Under NCLB, schools are labeled as "in need of improvement" when they miss one of more of 40 criteria on standardized tests for more than two years in a row.

Schools placed improvement status are subject to federal sanctions. As schools miss AYP in subsequent years, the sanctions become more stringent. Schools that do not make AYP in their first year are deemed as "Early Warning" schools by the DOE but face no sanctions.

For more information about sanction years, please click here:

AYP results are based on year-to-year comparisons of schools' scores in the HSPA (High School Proficiency Assessment) administered to 11th grade students, GEPA (Grade Eight Proficiency Assessment) and NJASK3/4 (New Jersey Assessment of Skills and Knowledge), administered to third- and fourth-graders. The tests are administered in the spring.

In order to achieve AYP, a school's students must meet both the proficiency targets and a 95 percent participation rate in math and language arts for each of ten subgroups, which include the total school population, students with disabilities, limited English proficiency (LEP) students, economically disadvantaged students and white, Hispanic, African American, Asian/Pacific Islander and American Indian/Native American students.

If a school does not achieve AYP in the same content area for two consecutive years, it is deemed to be a "School in Need of Improvement." Schools that receive Title I federal funding face sanctions.

For information about final school and district calculations, please click here:

For more information, please contact the Department of Education Public Information Office at (609) 292-1126.