State Lists Nevada Schools Needing Improvement

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Forty percent of Nevada's public schools are on a list of schools that didn't make adequate progress or are in need of improvement, state schools chief Jack McLaughlin said Wednesday.

McLaughlin released a list showing 194 of the schools didn't make adequate progress for one year, in line with federal No Child Left Behind Act requirements, while 27 others were in worse shape with "needing improvement" designations. That's out of a total of 548 elementary and secondary schools.

Under state and federal law, schools that show inadequate progress wind up on a "watch list," and if they make that list for two or more consecutive years they can be listed as being in need of improvement.

The "in need of improvement" schools include 18 in the Las Vegas area and two in the Reno area. Also listed are one school in Elko County, one in Lyon County, one in Carson City, two in White Pine County and two in Nye County.

Of the 194 schools statewide on the inadequate progress list, 132 are in the Las Vegas area and 25 are in the Reno area. A sampling of outlying counties with "inadequate progress" schools shows six in Elko, one in Humboldt, one in White Pine, four in Douglas, four in Churchill and seven in Carson City.

The No Child Left Behind Act requires schools to show the annual progress or face sanctions. Schools must show gains overall and by subgroups of students broken down by ethnicity, low-income, non-native English speakers and special education status. Schools must also show 95 percent participation campuswide and by each of the subgroups.

Both federal and state laws require all schools to move 100 percent of their students to proficient or better performance levels within a 12-month period.

Student test performance is analyzed on the basis of the test scores of various groups within the student population that includes the economically disadvantaged, disabled, limited English proficient and students from each major racial and ethnic group.

The performance is based also on the number of students taking the tests, attendance and graduation rates.