MILL HALL-For the first time ever, Keystone Central School District fell short of making "Adequate Yearly Progress."
It had to be a major disappointment.
Teachers, school administrators and staff members had walked into the year expressing confidence that students would meet the state and federal governments' measure of student and school achievement in the 2011-2012 school year.
To "make AYP," students in the school or district must meet goals in all three AYP Objectives: (1) Graduation and/or Attendance, (2) Academic Performance, and (3) Test Participation.
At Thursday evening's school board curriculum committee meeting, board members offered many words of frustration and exasperation about the situation, even while they worked to create new strategies to bring the scores up.
"I wish I had better news for you," Curriculum Director Terry Murty said. "We've been living on the edge for some time and we've hit a wall ... But every building in the district has grown ... We have grown these kids. If you look at the numbers we didn't miss by much and there are actions we can take."
In the meantime, citizens, parents and students throughout the state are still waiting for the official results to appear in "report card" format on the Pennsylvania Department of Education's PDE website.
School administrators emphasized that in most cases, the individual schools that fell short of AYP actually met achievement figures in most categories. As always, when smaller segments of those school populations are measured for academic success, the most significant problems occurred in the "economically disadvantaged" and "special education" categories.
Yearly, usually in middle summer, the PDE releases a concise report of status among districts statewide, outlining which schools made AYP, which did not, and what that means for the districts, the parents and the students.
Unfortunately, statewide results of the exams, the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment, have not been made public this year ... at least not yet.
For the complete story, see today's print edition of the Lock Haven Express.