Orange Beach Middle School receives A+ College Ready's School of Excellence Award

By Jessica Vaughn
Education Editor
jessica@gulfcoastmedia.com
Posted 7/14/22

ORANGE BEACH — Orange Beach Middle School is one of seven Alabama middle schools to receive the A+ College Ready 'School of Excellence' Award. The award goes to schools that experience record …

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Orange Beach Middle School receives A+ College Ready's School of Excellence Award

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ORANGE BEACH — Orange Beach Middle School is one of seven Alabama middle schools to receive the A+ College Ready 'School of Excellence' Award. The award goes to schools that experience record academic growth during their time in the A+ College Ready Middle School Training and Incentive Program (MSTIP).

Schools receiving the 2021-2022 'School of Excellence' award met their goal of a 50-point increase over their baseline scores on the PSAT during one year of participating in the program.

Out of the seven middle schools receiving the award, Orange Beach Middle School saw the most growth with 111-point growth. It was followed by Scottsboro Junior High School with 83-point growth, Pisgah High School with 71-point growth, Brookwood Middle School with 66-point growth, Carbon Hill Jr. High with 65-point growth, Wetumpka Middle School with 58-point growth, and Hewitt Trussville Middle School with 57-point growth.

According to a Facebook post by OBMS, "Over the two school years, the eighth-grade class improved their overall PSAT 8/9 score by 66 points and exceeded the required growth metric of 111 points. In addition, the students' aggregate evidence-based reading and writing score improved by 43 points and the math score improved by 69 points. The percent of students who met the evidence-based reading and writing college readiness benchmark score improved from 27% to 63%; the percent of students who met the math college readiness benchmark score improved from 25% to 63% and the percent of students who met both the reading and math benchmarks improved from 23% to 55%."

The goal of the Middle School Pilot is to increase access to A+ College Ready's professional learning for teachers, along with the other program components, in middle schools.

"In order for students to be successful in life after K-12 schooling, they need to be challenged and supported in school. This work must start prior to high school," said Tammy Dunn, vice president for academic affairs, A+ College Ready, in a release. "This pilot program has exceeded our expectations of success for students. Seven out of nine of our middle schools accomplished an incredible increase in student achievement. This commitment to high expectations and rigor in the classroom will have a lasting impact on these students for years to come."

The 2021-22 testing cycle saw over 2,300 eighth-grade students from nine middle schools participate. A+ College Ready started the MSTIP as a pilot program in 2020 in partnership with the Alabama State Department of Education.

The MSTIP is modeled after A+ College Ready's Advanced Placement Training and Incentive Program. It includes teacher training, administrator training and support, teacher empowerment through equipment/supplies, and teacher, leader and student incentives based upon student achievement and growth as measured by the PSAT along with the Alabama Comprehensive Assessment Program (ACAP).

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