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Two EPISD schools fail to meet state accountability standards

By: Gina Benitez
EL PASO, Texas -- Two El Paso ISD schools have failed to meet recently released state accountability standards.

The Texas Education Agency released the results which indicate Bassett Middle School and Bonham Elementary didn't make the grade.

"Five percent of the schools across the state were going to be rated academically unacceptable," said Dr. James Steinhauser, assistant superintendent for curriculum instruction at EPISD.

Steinhauser said every school competes against each other.

"So what I expected, was about four or five of our schools, since we have 90 schools in the district, would fall under the 5 percent range," Steinhauser said.

Bassett Middle and Bonham Elementary were both on the list.

"Within our schools, these two schools, what happened is we have a lot of our students that didn't make a year's worth of growth, just under a year's worth of growth, and that's the new accountability system and progress measure for students. So when you're reading at a fourth-grade level and you're in fourth grade, when you take your fifth-grade test, it should show that you're reading at a fifth-grade level," Steinhauser said.

Michael Carrillo has a child at Bonham Elementary.

"I'd probably say the biggest reaction would be shock," Carrillo said.

Up to now, he says he's been satisfied with the school, but the results do concern him.

"When your child goes to school, you definitely want that school to be up to par, when it comes to testing, when it comes to what they're teaching our children and everything," Carrillo said.

The district actually learned of the results back in June.

Since then, both schools have taken the steps to improve.

"They were required to go through training in September in Austin, and they had to take their campus leadership team to go to the training on school improvement. Then we did training with Region 19 in October and since then, we have been revising, helping the schools revise their improvement planning," Steinhauser said.



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