Roughly two-thirds of Missouri's public schools failed to meet tougher progress standards established under federal law. State officials, however, were pleased by the mixed results.
In talking about how the district performed on assessment tests, new Columbia schools Superintendent Chris Belcher used an analogy comparing the tests to a physical one might get at a doctor's office. The results indicate schools might have “a fever,” but it does not mean they are seriously ill.
This year, all but four Columbia public schools failed to meet adequate yearly progress, which is used to examine student proficiency in math and communication arts. Four elementary schools met the state-defined standards. An additional two elementary schools face corrective actions after falling short of the standards for a second consecutive year.
The adequate yearly progress determined by Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) test scores for third- to eighth-graders is expected to be one hundred percent by 2014.
The results of these tests have left schools across the state facing sanctions underneath the No Child Left Behind Act and examining their math and science curriculums.
The Columbia School Board will enter into negotiations to buy a building at 4600 Bethel Street after discussion in a closed meeting Monday night. Earlier in the evening members voted to spend 5 percent of the district's stimulus money for special education.
Missouri is joining an effort to create national core educational standards for public schools. “We now have a patchwork of differing state-developed standards," says state Education Commissioner Chris Nicastro, "and that has become a barrier to improving academic performance for all students.”
Columbia Public Schools' policy for heat-related early dismissal, changed last year, affects only those schools that don't have air conditioning. And the district plans to make cooling those schools a priority as part of a bond issue slated for 2010.
A new program at MU will build a community of students and faculty around the intersection of mathematics and life sciences. The program is funded by a five-year, $2 million grant from the National Science Foundation.
The Columbia School Board could vote Monday on the allocation of $171,000 of stimulus funds to improve its special education department.
With just more than two weeks until the first day of classes, Columbia Public Schools is developing a plan to manage possible outbreaks of swine flu.
The Voluntary Action Center's "Stuff the Bus" drive, which will be held this year during the sales tax holiday, collects school supplies to provide Columbia youth in need with the tools to be successful in school. They want to fill 1,600 backpacks for needy children.
Technological advancements at MU and Stephens and Columbia colleges are intended to make online courses more like in-person classroom experiences.
Three deputies from the Boone County Sheriff's Department that served as school resource officers and DARE teachers in Columbia Public Schools will be reassigned to schools outside of the city. The district will compensate the department for the remaining deputy.
The school district wants to use $1.6 million of federal money to purchase a new building for a special education facility or an early childhood education facility. The funds are part of $4 million in stimulus funds that must be spent before the end of the 2009-10 school year.
Starting in the fall, student teachers at Columbia College can work directly with seven schools in the Columbia Public School District. Previously, they had to secure placement by going through MU's program.
Day two of the school safety and security conference featured Aaron Richman, co-director of the Institute of Terrorism Research and Response and a former police officer from Israel.
The Career Ladder program in the Columbia Public School District, which pays teachers who devote additional hours beyond their contracts at the school, might not receive its anticipated state funding.
Elizabeth Choe and Ashok Cutkosky, two 2009 Hickman High School graduates, were named semifinalists in the Intel Science Talent Search.
Missouri is ranked below the median in new data released on children's health and well-being.