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Schools earn high marks on state report cards

Tigard-Tualatin and Sherwood school districts have once again out-performed the rest of the state, according to newly released report cards from the Oregon Department of Education.

The report cards, which were released last week, show the two districts outperforming their peers, but one with plenty of room to grow.

The annual report cards rate schools on a scale of 1 to 5 — one being lowest — and compares them to similar schools across the state, giving them a rating of below average, average or above average.

The rating level is based on a variety of factors, including graudation rates, test scores, attendance and academic growth.

Only three schools in Tigard-Tualatin were rated level 5: Deerk Creek, Durham and Tualatin elementary schools, and seven others were rated at level 4.

The district’s demographics closely mirror the state's, but the district outperformed its peers in reading, math and science, and boasts a higher-than-usual graduation rate.

“Each of our schools has set high expectations for continued growth,” said Superintendent Ernie Brown on the district’s report card.

Both high schools received a Level 4 ranking, an improvement for Tigard High School, which was ranked at Level 3 last year.

But it wasn’t all good news.

Templeton Elementary School dropped this year from a Level 3 to a Level 2, and was rated in the bottom 15 percent of schools in the state.

The reasons for the drop are largely due to a lack of growth among its minority populations, including poor students, special education students and English language learners.

Twality and Fowler middle schools were also marked as “below average” compared to similar schools in other parts of the state, largely for the same reasons, though the schools managed to maintain Level 3 ratings for the second year in a row.

The results couldn’t have been more different in Sherwood, where every school was ranked either at Level 4 or Level 5.

Half of the district’s eight schools were ranked at Level 5. The other half were ranked at Level 4.

The district has strived to incorporate more proficiency-based teaching practices in the past three years, which Sherwood Superintendent Heather Cordie said was partially responsible for the outstanding numbers.

“Our teachers, classified staff and administrators deserve great praise for maintaining strong student achievement during challenging economic times,” Cordie said.

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