Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

July 12, 2011

County schools fare well on ISTEP

By Courtney Essett

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Department of Education released statewide ISTEP scores on Tuesday and Hendricks County schools scored fairly well with students who passed both math and English.

Topping off the list was Northwest Hendricks Schools with 89 percent of students passing both subjects. Plainfield schools made the list with 86 percent, while Brownsburg and Avon community school corporations each had more than 84 percent of students pass both subjects. Mill Creek schools had just more than 81 percent of students pass both English and math, followed by Danville with slightly more than 71 percent of students passing both.

ISTEP is a statewide test given annually to students in grades three through eight. The scores are taken into consideration in the state’s accountability system. The scores, due out in August, will be given to each district as a letter grade for the first time this year.

In a difficult year marked with budget cuts, layoffs, and reform face-offs, Hendricks County schools have managed to stay at the head of the class.

Earlier in the year, the DOE named Avon, Brownsburg, Mill Creek, and Northwest Hendricks schools as Indiana Four Star Schools. Tri-West Middle School, a part of Northwest Hendricks, was also selected as a 2011 School to Watch.

Scott Olinger, superintendent of Plainfield Schools, said he is proud of both Plainfield and county efforts.

“Obviously, you celebrate when you can, so we’re feeling really good about that number,” he said.

Despite the 86 percent rating, Olinger said there is still work to be done.

“What I’m most proud of is the fact that statistically we’ve always been very high, but we’re improving,” he added.

Carmelremained the state’s top scoring district with 92.5 percent of students passing both sections of the ISTEP.

Still, Olinger said, Hendricks County Schools are among some of the best in the state.

“I would match Hendricks County schools with among the best in the state in overall education,” he said. “We are very proud of the hard work that our teachers have done and the hard work of our students. It’s a team effort. We’ve got great parents that support what we’re doing.”

For a full break down of ISTEP scores and how each individual corporation fared, visit the website at www.in.gov/doe/istep.