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Refugio High rated unacceptable because of math scores

July 29, 2011 at 2:29 a.m.


REFUGIO - Superintendent Jack Gaskins was surprised Friday when Refugio High School was rated academically unacceptable by the Texas Education Agency.

The ratings for each campus and school district were released Friday for the 2011 Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills Test.

"We missed it by 2 percentage points," Gaskins said.

Despite the school's unacceptable rating, the district was rated academically acceptable.

Woodsboro school district was also ranked academically acceptable while the Austwell-Tivoli school district was rated recognized.

The problem for the high school this year was math, Gaskins said.

The school just hired an additional math teacher for the upcoming school year, Gaskins added.

In 2010, the percentage of all students who met the standard for math was 82 percent.

This year, that percentage dropped to 79 percent.

Each year, the students are benchmarked and prepared for the TAKS test, but the school is going to continue to try harder, he said.

"I think each year the passing standards are increased," he said. "It was a surprise to us, considering it's a moving target."

Closer to the coast at Austwell-Tivoli school district, Superintendent Antonio Aguirre could not be happier.

The school rated recognized, but did drop from being an exemplary school district in 2010, Aguirre said.

"We're very much happy about the results," Aguirre said. "I'm tickled to death with what we got."

The district's curriculum is not entirely focused on passing the TAKS, Aguirre said.

TAKS specific questions are embedded throughout the curriculum, he said.

Size may matter when it comes to excelling at the TAKS test for the school district, Aguirre said.

The district, which is the smallest in the county, has more time for one-on-one attention, he said.

"On both tokens, we're so small that one or two students can skew us one way or another," he said.

Woodsboro school district Superintendent Steven Self could not be reached for comment Friday.

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