The state's unique system, which is free from No Child Left Behind laws of the past, provides more comprehensive data for educators, such as individual student growth and information on achievement gaps facing minority and poor students.
While Kanawha County Superintendent Ron Duerring praised the new system's trajectory data, which allows parents and teachers to foresee where students will be in the future if they continue at their current learning rate, some board members worried the information isn't enough.
School board member Bill Raglin said he wants to see more comprehensive data for the county's schools. For example, what do 395 dropouts really mean when compared to the overall student population?
There are 180 less dropouts in Kanawha County today than there were five years ago, but what affect does enrollment -- which is also declining -- have on those numbers, Raglin asked.
"This doesn't mean much. The numbers are larger naturally because we have the biggest district. We need to see percentages," Raglin said. "I'm worried about the 22 percent [of the county's schools that were deemed sub par by the Department of Education.]"
School board member Robin Rector said that while schools that have improved deserve recognition, the board needs to take a closer look to see a change.
"This data is really good, but we need to drill down this information," Rector said. "It's too difficult to have the discussions we need to have if we don't do that."Reach Mackenzie Mays at mackenzie.m...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4814.