As some students enjoy the last few days of their summer vacation, others in Petersburg will be heading back to the classroom this week as kids from Peabody Middle School and A.P. Hill Elementary School open their doors for year-round school.
In an effort to tackle slipping performance on statewide standardized tests, both schools were granted a waiver by the Virginia Department of Education to have two of the district's nine schools open all year around.
Data from VDOE released this week, both Peabody and A.P. Hill continue to struggle in key benchmark areas that determine if a school receives accreditation from the Commonwealth.
Last school year, A.P. Hill Elementary missed accreditation benchmarks in the subjects of English, mathematics, and science. In some cases, the school scored over 33 points lower than required benchmark set by the state.
Numbers from Peabody showed a similar story, as the middle failed to reach state accreditation levels for English and mathematics.
Both schools were denied accreditation following their performance in the 2013-2014 school year.
In addition, A.P. Hill and Peabody did not reach federally set Annual Measurable Objectives, or AMOs, for Standards of Learning tests given in the 2012-2013 year. Those AMO targets look at specific demographics and their proficiency on standardized tests.
Students with disabilities and black students at both schools did not meet federal accountability targets.
The school systems hopes that the extra time in the classroom for students will yield stronger results on the required yearly tests.
Even though both Peabody Middle and A.P. Hill Elementary will be open on Monday, Petersburg's other elementary, junior high, and high schools will be back in session on September 2.
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