Julia Randall Elementary School is Rim Country’s most successful, according to data released this week by the Arizona Department of Education.
The scoring system, called AZ Learns, judges schools based on standardized test scores and dropout rates, among other things.
Julia Randall Elementary School received an “excelling” grade — the highest category possible. Payson High School and Frontier Elementary School ranked highly performing, with Rim Country Middle School and Payson Elementary ranking performing plus. Payson’s Center for Success ranked performing, as did the Pine Strawberry School, Young schools and Tonto Basin’s school.
“It’s an affirmation we’re on the right track,” said Payson Superintendent Casey O’Brien.
The state collects data on every single student from one grade to the next, and then combines the information into a composite score for the school.
O’Brien says the state’s system is more accurate than the federal system because the federal system is pass/fail.
The state’s system accounts for whether a school meets federal standards, but that measure is worth only one point.