Three Payson Schools Earn ‘Highly Performing’ Status

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Three of Payson schools ranked “highly performing” this year in the state achievement ranking known as AZ Learns. All Payson schools and the Pine Strawberry school also made the federal Adequate Yearly Progress benchmark.

Julia Randall Elementary, which had earned the state’s “excelling” label for two years, dropped down one level to “highly performing” for 2009.

Other “highly performing” schools included Frontier Elementary and Payson High School.

Payson Elementary, Rim Country Middle School and the Pine Strawberry School ranked “performing plus.”

AZ Learns evaluates schools by scores on the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards test, and graduation rates among other things.

Traditionally, the state has also considered whether a school makes the federal Adequate Yearly Progress.

However, officials dropped that one-point measure this year.

Statewide, the number of schools ranked “excelling” increased from 17 to 21 percent from last year to this year. The number of “performing plus” increased from 21 percent to 32 percentile.

“The AZ Learns accountability system is the best way to measure a school’s performance from year to year, and gives parents a snapshot as to how their school compares with other schools around the state,” said state Superintendent Tom Horne.

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