State Report Card: 13 New Hanover County Schools are “low-performing”

Published: Sep. 6, 2022 at 11:13 PM EDT
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NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - A new report from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction shows that 13 of 39 traditional New Hanover County Schools received a grade of “low performing” on their DPI report card for the 2021-22 school year.

The report shows an increase in the number of schools receiving either a D or an F in their report compared to the 2018-19 school year, the most recent to not be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In that year, New Hanover County Schools had just three such schools in the district.

Four schools, Wrightsville Beach Elementary, Wilmington Early College High, Masonboro Elementary, and Isaac Bear Early College High School all received an “A” grade.

The DPI uses a weighted scale to grade each school based 80 percent on academic performance and 20 percent on growth. School board members like Nelson Beaulieu think those numbers do not represent an accurate picture of schools in the district.

“With regards to the scoring system itself, I’ve never been a fan of it,” said Beaulieu. “I think it’s something like 80% proficiency, 20% growth, that’s how they measure these things. They’ve got to flip that. That is not an accurate reflection of what goes on at any school in North Carolina or in the county of New Hanover.”

School Board Chair Stephanie Kraybill shared this statement:

“When you look at our data compared to other districts, we continue to outperform the state in most areas by an average of about five percentage points. We also continue to perform in the top 5 of the largest districts in the state in most areas. Statewide, we know our students suffered learning loss, but I’m confident in our district’s plan to address it.”

You can view the DPI’s report here.