LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - "Needs improvement." That's the classification the Fayette County School District received under new state testing standards.
A new way of teaching, learning, and measuring success across the state of Kentucky comes with mixed results for schools in Fayette County. School officials tell WKYT the district was only one-tenth of a point away from reaching the proficient category.
Some schools, like Veterans Park Elementary, rank among the highest. The school scored an 80.5 percent out of 100, and reached the classification of a distinguished school.
"We focused on the standards and teaching the standards for our kids. And we're very excited that our efforts paid off," says Amy McVey, principal at Veterans Park Elementary
On the other end of the spectrum, Leestown Middle School earned 37.9 percent out of 100, and falls into the "Needs Improvement" category. Fayette County Superintendent Tom Shelton says schools should look at their own records to measure success.
"I personally always believe that a school should really only compare its results against itself."
Overall, Fayette County Public Schools rank 54th out of 174 districts.
The new system is supposed to better prepare students for success in college and careers. Parents like Liza Holland admit its added new challenges for her children.
"The things that I'm seeing that come home and the feedback from kids is that it is a little bit more rigorous. Things are getting a little bit more in depth. But they're not covering quite such a wide array of things."
While school leaders hope to improve across the board under these new testing standards, some of the focus areas are on minority, special needs, and students living in poverty.
"We have to put in different structures and different support in, where the achievement is not where it should be"
For parents that would like to learn more about the scores and rankings, there will be some informational sessions throughout the month at various high schools in Lexington:
Monday, November 5th Bryan Station HS at 6 pm
Thursday, November 8th Henry Clay HS at 6:30 pm
Monday, November 12th Dunbar HS at 7 pm
Monday, November 19th Lafayette HS 6:30 pm
Thursday, November 29th, Tatse Creek HS 6:30 pm