In-Depth Look: School Grades For Area Schools

June 21, 2009


Florida Department of Education school accountability grades were released last week, and the results were mixed for North Escambia area schools.

Bratt Elementary, Byrneville Elementary, Jim Allen Elementary, Ernest Ward Middle School, Ransom Middle and Jay High schools were all A-rated schools.
Molino Park slipped from an A to a B, as did Jay Elementary. Tate High improved from a C to B, while Northview High fell from a B to a D.

Carver/Century K-8 School, which closed at the end of the school year, received an F rating. Carver/Century was the only F-rated school in Escambia or Santa Rosa counties. There were only 47 F-rated schools in the entire state of Florida.

Pictured: The graphics above and below provide a more detailed look into the school accountability grades released last week by the Florida Department of Education. graphics.



43 Responses to “In-Depth Look: School Grades For Area Schools”

  1. an observer on July 3rd, 2009 12:42 pm

    The way to stop the “fake Floridians” or Alabamians from entering the Florida school syatem should be easy….have someone who is bias go out and search out every address given and see if there is actually a house or some type of livable residence there with THEIR name on all of the bills. As far as the schools in Atmore go….say whatever you may about them, mr. Byrd has taken ECMS to new heights and he did it ASAP. There have been teachers there over the years that I saw personally who did no teaching what so ever. When computers were put in the classrooms, all they did was sit at their desk all day and email, go online, play cards etc. there was a lesson on the board for them to read and answer questions…most kids don’t ever read a lesson, they go straight for the questions and go back and look the answers up. This no child left behind crap is just that, crap. For years now they have been passing students to the next grade and i know some that couldn’t read a lick. If you can’t read, you aren’t going to be able to learn. They have to eventually pass some due to thier ages, but some still can’t read, can’t comprehend. Those kids shouldn’t be passed on to the next grade, they should have parental confrences and either put the child in some sort of program for slow learners or take them to a special school. I now one year in Atmore , they took all of the special ed kids and put them in regular classes (and honors classes) and their scores affected the scores of all of the students as a whole. This killed some of the kids in honors classes. Seems as though our kids are our futures, but seems like no one involved in education really cares. all they care about (not all) is the paycheck, the vacations and the benefits. I do know a particular teacher years back LOVED teaching and the kids and she was GREAT at what she did. Most every student in Escambia County middle school that took her for math passed the high school grad math part of the test the FIRST time. I never thought of taking my kids to Florida schools. I know this is about Florida schools, but my point is, there is no reason for these parents to go over the line. If their kid wants to learn, they can.

  2. Whoaaaa!! on June 25th, 2009 3:52 pm

    I agree with you!! What an example for their children–lieing to officials to manipulate the system. How embarrassed the children must be knowing everyone knows your parents lied. From what I hear, the school district will be sending people out to check each and every address in question …. and hopefully find the crooks taking away from the legitimate Florida students. Look at the additions Bratt and Ernest Ward have to add to accomodate the few new LEGITAMATE students. Isn’t this the same as supplying false information to obtain welfare, food stamps, etc? It is false information to obtain Florida scholarships and athletic priviledges. Felony?

  3. NN on June 25th, 2009 11:08 am

    Here’s an idea for those who think cameras would solve the problem: Let’s put cameras in the homes of all the parents and students who complain it’s the teachers’ fault for the child’s failure. Then we could determine just how much time that student spends on homework and/or studying for tests–and how much time the parents spend encouraging their children that school is a priority.

  4. taxpayer on June 25th, 2009 9:34 am

    According to the local principals and school district officials there are no “fake students” attending their local schools. As long as they have a power pole in someone’s yard, their name on someone’s power or water bill, a lease agreement written by local attorneys in Bratt, or a new Florida drivers license, they are most certainly a “legitimate” student with all rights and privleges, and by the way able to receive our tax payer funded bright futures scholarships. Since they are changing the rules regarding proof of residency, they are requiring a Florida drivers license, the local principals, with a wink and a nod, are advising parents to get their Florida license in addition to the Alabama license they already have. Bratt elementary would probably have room for the Carver students if they would run the invading hoard out of town. We just think schools’ scores are bad this year, just wait.

  5. Whoaaaa!! on June 24th, 2009 12:01 pm

    I certainly hope their are no :Alabama residents” or “fake Florida” residents complaining here about Northview?! You know who you are and I do too. Go back to your own schools.

  6. wondering on June 24th, 2009 10:43 am

    One more parent: This is where you(and others) need to get involved. Call the school board and Supt. Let them know that you are tired of classes being cut at NHS. As long as they can cut them and nobody complains they will keep cutting. Mrs. Weaver has to fight a battle each year to keep classes from being cut, and once they cut them you don’t get them back. The people were made all kinds of promises when they built NHS and the school district has not done but one thing and that is cut. Nobody in Pensacola has a clue about running a small rural high school. They promised that we would have for our students what they have in Pensacola and it never has happened. We are treated like second class citizens on the northend and it is time for it to stop. The teachers at NHS do their very best with what they have,granted some don’t pull their share but the majority do the very best for your children and would love to do more but our hands are tied by the people in Pensacola. Don’t complain at us, we are on your side. We know that it is unfair to your children and our students. And by the way to the one writring about hiring a math tutor

  7. one more parent on June 23rd, 2009 8:47 pm

    My son and a friend of hid did most of the teaching of the precal class they were taking. I called the assistant principal at least twice a week to try and get something done. Finally my son made the comment that the teacher had it narrowed down to 2 students’ whose parents were likely to be ‘telling on her’ and since it wasn’t doing any good I should stop. He made an A, received a lot of scholarships, and is doing well in his career.

    What is upsetting is that NHS no longer has any dual enrollment classes – they had 6 when the school opened. They don’t teach AP classes becauses as I was told, none of the students passed – sounds like it might be time to ‘reteach’!

    Students and parents do play an important role in their education. It can not all be blamed on Century either. Other high schools in the county require their teachers to tutor those students who need extra help, or just want to make sure they are doing their homework correctly, twice/week. Maybe this would be a good idea for NHS. Arrange transportation to a single drop off spot so thos students from Century could also take advantage.

  8. Chief parent on June 23rd, 2009 8:38 pm

    I have a child in northview you would never know it but he would rather go somewhere else . And I tell him to do his best and I am proud to say he does! A very smart boy and if he knew people would’nt judge him he would tell you himself what a joke Mrs.Weaver is and some of the things that school is NOT ment for and you old snubers can say thats life or it didnt hurt me or what ever the passing thought you are having it dont make it right!! I support camera’s EVERYWHERE in school except the restroom. But guess what district wont ever have enough money to busy paying teachers who do NOTHING. With that said I would like to thank the few teachers that teach for the love of our children.

  9. NN on June 23rd, 2009 5:46 pm

    Well said, Northview Grad. Not only do teachers have to focus on a “set curriculum,” they also have to follow the federal guidelines mandated by No Child Left Behind (documenting data, pacing guides, AND standardized testing). Granted, not every student learns at the same pace nor by the same techniques, but I am so proud to read from a recent high school graduate that students must also assume responsibility in the learning process. I guarantee that those students who willingly read, study, and THINK on their own instead of believing that the teacher should spoon-feed all material to them will be better prepared for college–and life.

    P.S. I know I will get grief about the “spoon-feed” remark, but before you respond, ask yourself how much time your child spends on reading, studying, and thinking a problem through BEFORE he/she says “I don’t understand!” or “The teacher doesn’t explain enough.” Sure, there are incompetent teachers just as there is imcompetence in any profession; but, honestly, we all know most students will do only what is expected of them, and from what I’ve read, that expectation is to blame the teachers and/or administration.

  10. Northview Grad on June 23rd, 2009 3:20 pm

    The problem with stopping to make sure that every student comprehends the material completely is that not everyone will “get it” and material that needs to be taught in a class will have to be skipped. The teachers are given a set curriculum and expected to teach everything that is outlined in that curriculum. They are not allowed much leeway in the courses, or at least from what I can tell. Leaving the students to deduce the material on their own prepares them for college because there is not someone to look over your shoulder at the collegiate level. I understand that more instruction is required at the high school level, but the student has to be willing to work at understanding things themselves. It was not all that long ago that I was there. Overall the FCAT is not the solution for measuring progress, and I feel that there are better measures of a schools effectiveness.

  11. marty on June 23rd, 2009 3:09 pm

    why are you giving the math department such a hard time? looking at the scores seems like reading and science are the “low” departments

  12. hum.... on June 23rd, 2009 2:07 pm

    I have just been scanning some of the comments made about this story. I don’t really appreciated the comments (mostly by Mad Mama) made about how Northview’s grade is a reflection on the teachers and Mrs. Weaver. I feel like the FCAT scores require the effort of everyone involved in a child’s life, i.e. parents, teachers, staff, friends, the individual student, etc. Please don’t point fingers at the administration and faculty. I can almost guarantee you that they work very hard for your children. I am a teacher in an Alabama school and we have some of those terrible teachers that do nothing but play Solitaire and draw a paycheck but ours scores soar far above many. And those test scores are the result of the involvement of parents and various other programs we have available at our school. I say all of this to convey that teachers and administration are not always to blame. If your child is not excelling to his or her potential, don’t point fingers, get up and do something about it. And another thing Mad Mama (on June 21), do you think that Mrs. Weaver is supposed to work all day every day with out a vacation, spare me that comment. That is ridiculous. Give her a break!

    Think long and hard before you point fingers at who is to blame. You could be using that energy to find a solution to the problem and improve the lives of students and children.

  13. Parent on June 23rd, 2009 1:00 pm

    First of all, the school grades show how well MOST of the northend schools are doing. Shouldn’t we be commending that! I am VERY proud that my children attend Bratt and Ernest Ward. They are well-rounded children and the schools give them opportunties to express themselves. I have one more year until my children start attending NHS, so I won’t make any comments about them.
    There is SO much that goes into making the school grades. Molino Park actually had enough points for a A, but was lowered a letter grade. Last year, Carver/Century earned a D, but received a B.
    What happened to “Be Nice”?…no personal attacks…aren’t some of you “attacking the principal and staff”.?

  14. DebMc on June 23rd, 2009 11:10 am

    I have a child currently at Northview, who also attended Ernest Ward. At Ernest Ward it seemed as if all they were concerned about was doing well on the FCATs, which may explain why they are an “A” school. I know that some of the teachers thought the administration wanted too much emphasis placed on their performance in these tests. It doesn’t seem to be this way at Northview. But, do the FCAT scores tell the whole story about our children’s education? Frankly, I would like teachers that spent the time making sure students comprehend what they are teaching instead of just leaving them on their own to figure it out. Some kids “just have it” and some don’t. I, for one, don’t have a college education, and I can’t help my child with the work if he doesn’t understand it. Most of the Math & English is taught so different from when I was in school. What can someone like me do if the teacher is not making the child understand? This needs to be the emphasis, and maybe then, the FCAT scores will reflect a difference.

  15. mad mom on June 23rd, 2009 9:06 am

    Oh good grief you people, the truth is finally out…..bitterness. Enough said!!!!!

  16. Mad Mama on June 22nd, 2009 11:05 pm

    an educator: your coments are noted. as for seeking employment, that is top priority but my childrens education is the most important issue. I want them to have a better life than me. I want them to do well enough in school to get a scholarship so they can go to college. not everyone has the money to do that. I would love to go back to school and do what you do. I have always wanted to be a teacher, but lack of money and children make it tough. I made bad decisions in my life and did not do well in school and pay the price daily. don’t fault me for trying to make a better life for my children as their success now is their only hope for college in the fuuture. enough said!

  17. One more mad mama on June 22nd, 2009 5:43 pm

    I did have a child at Northview and he did horribly there. Mrs Weaver was constantly calling me or sending me notes that he was in trouble for some offense. 99% of these were ridiculous complaints, such as the teacher came in the room and he was picking up a pencil that rolled off his desk and he was sent to the office for being out of his seat. When he tried to explain that, the teacher yelled for him to go to the principal’s office and don’t come back. Funny thing, all the other kids said the same thing my son did, but she sided with the teacher and tried to give him a 3 day suspension for disturbing the class. How do you disturb a class when you pick up a pencil so you can do your work? How do you disturb a class when the teacher isn’t present? For that matter, what class is there to disturb when the teacher says he’ll be right back and doesn’t return for 20 minutes?

    My son had horrible grades when he was there. I took him out of there and suddenly his grades shot up and he even won a scholarship. I asked his teachers if he was a behavior problem since Mrs Weaver had insisted that he was and they were shocked. They described him the way I have always thought he was: quiet, well-behaved, polite, hardworking and friendly. Hmmm, go figure.

    I wish they would do away with the FCAT anyway. One of my kids stays sick for the week before and the week of the test every year. She’s scared to death that she’ll “fail”. Another of my kids made straight A’s all year long but didn’t pass the FCAT in the 3rd grade and so she was held back. HOW do you make A’s all year and then not pass?

    We do need accountability, but this isn’t the way to get there.

  18. concerned2 on June 22nd, 2009 5:42 pm

    Atmore Mom,
    Below is the link to the Al State Department of Ed. You can peruse the results for any test given at any school in the entire state. You will not see a specific grade for the school, but this link should help you.
    As a former principal I know the difficulty of “getting rid” of poor teachers. It is almost impossible. I promise each of you that this makes administration and our great teachers just as mad as it does the general population. What will it take to change this and take away the union’s power? In Alabama I have only seen two cases when AEA (Alabama Education Association) did not support the member. Once was a case where a teacher was having sex with a student on campus, the other was a case of embezzlement. Never, to my knowledge, has a lazy, incompetent teacher been relived of their duties. I am sure it happens, I just can’t name one.

  19. an educator on June 22nd, 2009 5:27 pm

    Mad Moma, sorry to hear you lost your job. If your child is so successful in school, then why are you so worried about it? There will always be “dead weight” for him or her, even in the workplace. Get used to it and get over it. That’s life. As for teachers, perhaps you should spend a day doing what we do and then you will have the right to comment. Better yet, perhaps you should get a job so you can stop wasting time commenting online. Just a thought!

  20. Florida Tax payer on June 22nd, 2009 5:03 pm

    Maybe the Alabama students should go back to Alabama.

  21. Mad Mama on June 22nd, 2009 4:24 pm

    actually this year, no vacation as money has been tight as I lost my job. but thanks for the concern and asking.

  22. Mad MOM on June 22nd, 2009 12:58 pm

    I had a two children go through NHS and received an awsome education. Both of my children tell me that NHS prepared them for college. The teachers at college basically say either you get it or you don’t. I understand the parents griping about a “few” teachers and I mean a very few but rest assured how many other good teachers are there teaching at NHS? Many, many I can tell you. Many of you do not realize what all goes into a school grade… is more than just the administration and teachers….the students bubble the test. Parents need to step up and make sure their child is taking the test seriously. Know what I see, many kids working until midnight so they can drive a car…or kids saying oh I do not have to pass the FCAT until I am a senior. Where are the parents? First of all, if my children did work, they did not work during FCAT week. I for one resent all the eggs being placed in one basket. As for Mrs. Weaver, I can not say enough on how well she has done at NHS. I know my kids (still have one there) are safe each and everyday. To me that means a whole lot more than some test grade. Thank you Northview for giving my children the education allowing them to succeed in college and life…..Keep up the good work on that part. As far as the school grade, we all and I mean we all need to take pride and push our kids to do their very best each and every day and watch what happens, wow the grade comes up!!! Let me see, mad mama, did you take a vacation this year? Your kids? thought so……..

  23. Mad Mama on June 22nd, 2009 11:41 am

    there is not much left to do as a parent when your child is on the honor roll all year, is in the top ten in their class, participates in several extra cric. activities, and is active in the community and youth group at church. I volunteer at school and with the activities yet my child still suffers from the dead weight at NHS. there is no excuse for teachers who do not teach. there should not be job security for those few, in the real world if you don’t do your job you loose it! and cameras in the classroom would be a good idea along with increased accountability.

  24. Tax Payer on June 22nd, 2009 11:12 am

    I do not have a child at NHS (yet), but all of my friends with children attending NHS have math tutors for their children. So I know there are plenty of parents that are involved and have had to “PAY OUT OF POCKET” for their kids to learn math and not be left behind. I have several years before my daughter will attend, but I have had many parents tell me to be prepared to pay for math tutoring.

  25. Northview Grad on June 22nd, 2009 9:13 am

    I have to agree with “proud parent”. Having graduated from NHS, I know the good and bad teachers at that school. The math department is not the one that needs the most work, which is supported by the math scores in the schools accountability report. When I graduated from NHS, I was able to go straight into calculus. Few students are able to do that from ANY school and I had the math teacher in question for two years in a row. I would say that I was well prepared for college. The majority of the staff and educators at NHS is top notch, including Mrs. Weaver. Although, I would like to see one science teacher get the axe…

  26. kids side on June 22nd, 2009 8:53 am

    When you ask a teacher to help you, it’s go try to figure it out.. They have no time for you. They show you a problem and expect you to get it right then, well some of us can’t. My mom did go see the teacher and it does help. Why don’t they put camera’s in the class room, then they would be able to get rid of the teacher that are not teaching.

  27. proud parent on June 22nd, 2009 2:05 am

    what’s funny is how the school has a bad grade BUT that just reflects the students grades. Then everyone is quick to point fingers at who is to blame! why dont people start looking in the mirror while they are pointing and then they can see where they need to start to correct the problem….. then the process to improve the students and schools grades can begin. But YOU have to recognize what YOU can do to help YOUR student improve and in return the school grade will improve. So until you have exhausted all of your resources helping the students do better in school, you dont have the right to point the fingers and blame anyone. I too am a concerned parent about the schools grades but its not the teachers and staff’s fault…..its the students and parents who need to try harder and respect the people who dedicate their lives to educate our children. Yes there are some teachers out there who do not deserve to be in a classroom “teaching” our kids but there are a whole bunch who I respect everyday for what they do! Keep up the good work!

  28. just my opinion on June 21st, 2009 11:03 pm

    Mad Mama…..I’m with you 100%…Enough is Enough!!! I too have had the same problem with the “math” teacher at NHS and have spoken directly to her and the administration with no results to help the children. And for all of those out there that read this and say ” parents need to get involved ” let me be the one to tell you that I am very involved in my childs education both in and out of school. Believe it or not, there are still parents out there that actually parent their children!
    Sometimes it actually does fall on the teacher and administration at the school! Just how many skeletons are hidden in the closet at NHS???

  29. Mad Mama on June 21st, 2009 10:28 pm

    there is a problem when an entire honors math class does not score higher than a c on a test or exam. this seems to point to poor teaching. I have discussed this with administration and the administration supports the staff 100%. the teachers could do jones town all over again and the administration would deny any wrong doing on the teachers part. I intend to speak with the new super about NHS as there is too much / many questionable activities going on there. ENOUGH is ENOUGH! and for those of you who think I am angry or dislike Mrs. Weaver, no I do not have anything personal against Mrs. Weaver, she just happens to be the top administrator at NHS so this ultimately falls on her desk.

  30. Atmore Mom on June 21st, 2009 9:10 pm

    I wish Escambia Ala School’s posted grades were posted on here. Then you would really have something to talk about and know why everyone wants out. William, how about it?

  31. lu on June 21st, 2009 9:09 pm

    Hey Mrs. Weaver God doesn’t like ugly!

  32. a.nicole on June 21st, 2009 7:27 pm

    Is there anywhere that shows how a school’s grade is broken down? Something to let us know how much the students grades factor, how much parental involvement factors, etc???? The grades are not based 100% on FCAT, correct? I think that might give everyone an adequate view of what needs to be looked at as a problem?!?

  33. just a thought on June 21st, 2009 6:15 pm

    I do agree that a lack of motivation in students plays a major role in school grades. However, the administration(who is ultimately responsible for school grades) must deal with the issue of poor–yes I said poor teaching skills. For example, If the majority of the algebra class fails a test it might be that the teacher hasn’t done a very good job! I say if you are a teacher and this happens, perhaps you need to reteach!

  34. C on June 21st, 2009 5:47 pm

    Ernest Ward + Carver = Northview

    You were expecting something else? Northview will be a step up for Carver students but a huge drop for Ernest Ward students moving into high school.

  35. Concerned Mom on June 21st, 2009 4:37 pm

    I hope the Carver grade does not carry over to Bratt this year.

  36. parent on June 21st, 2009 4:15 pm

    Northview is a great school. I have two children that finished Northview. They both went to Bratt and Ernest Ward. A teacher can not take the test for the students. The ese students at Northview is higher per student than the other large middle schools. This is a factor in the grades. Also, these grades are not on the childrens report cards so what does it matter to them.

  37. BarrineauParkDad on June 21st, 2009 3:44 pm

    I’m with “N”

    The kids have to want to make the grade and that starts at home with mom and dad.

    Yes, there are some administrators and teachers more concerned with the politics of the school system, than the kid’s education and that is a shame. Yes there are some educated yet poorly qualified teachers and I wish it were easier to get rid of them. Unfortunataly the retention of our teachers is not based on ability. Its based on tenure, politics and the pull of the teachers union.

    Its not likely that this will change anytime soon. Until then all we can do as parents is instill the value of education in our children and ensure they do their part to make the grade.

  38. teacher on June 21st, 2009 3:37 pm

    Check the following websites out to find the facts. Northview scored points to earn a “C” grade (469). However, the low performing students did not make enough gains in reading & Math. This caused the score to drop a letter grade.

    Parents- if your child is in remedial classes take action and get involved.
    Students- if you are in remedial classes take action and work harder.
    Remedial/Core/Elective teachers- of remedial students get parents involved and check out methods you used last year. Reflect…

    Research states a teacher cannot fix a problem in 45 minutes without help.
    Think about it this way. If your child plays on a sport’s team. How much time does he/she practice daily to improve? If he/she wants to improve or excel, they will need to commit to extra training, nutritional changes, parental support, and extra help (private coaching). How much time does your child place into academics? (Especially the low performing) How much time do you involve yourself with your child’s academics? Tutoring? Many students place more time into extra curricular sports/clubs/computer/TV/Social issues than academics during their high school years.
    We ALL need to evaluate why Northview scored low. We cannot blame one person. Students, parents, teachers, support staff, administration, District personnel, and community leaders are all to blame. We need to be a team that is concerned about academic successes! Think about what you can do to change Northview.
    I challenge you to comment on here about what you can do.
    I, as a teacher plan to reflect on my methods, try to get parents more involved during the school year, and research over the summer on how to improve low performing students. Most importantly keep an open mind and be ready for change.

  39. N on June 21st, 2009 1:16 pm

    The school grades are also not just the problem of the principal of each school. It is broad spectrum starting AT HOME. It takes the whole pie to make a grade, not just an indivdual slice.

  40. an educator on June 21st, 2009 8:47 am

    Mad Mama, get off Mrs. Weaver’s case! You may not like her, but trust me, there are worse principals! As for the D, Tate made one a few years ago and the freakin world didn’t end. Northview will rebound, just like Tate did. My child attends Northview and I am quite happy with the education he/she is receiving there. And by the way, everyone deserves some vacation time!

  41. William on June 21st, 2009 8:32 am

    mad mama — Northview was a C school 1999-2007

  42. Mad Mama on June 21st, 2009 8:31 am

    What is Mrs. Weavers solution to solve this issue? Oh wait, she has been on vacation for the last 2 weeks and might not even know the scores are out.

  43. Mad Mama on June 21st, 2009 8:27 am

    has northview ever been an a school?