Schools in Georgia are held accountable for the performance of each child in the system. Each year schools need to meet the "Annual Yearly Progress," or AYP.
If one school in the system fails to meet AYP, the entire system fails.
In Grady County, two out of seven schools failed to meet AYP. In Thomas County, Central High did not meet AYP.
Dr. Jean Quigg, Assistant Superintendent of Thomas County, says, "We've made great improvements in test scores with students’ achievement and we're very proud of that and we're focusing on that, but we're not really satisfied until we have 100 percent of our students passing every step test, no matter what grade level it is.”
Although both Thomas and Grady Counties failed to meet AYP requirements for the year, both systems have looked at what went wrong and are ready to start this new school year on a positive note.
Tim Helms, Principal of Cairo High, says, "We're going to continue to work on strategies on trying to improve and keep our students focused, keep them from dropping out."
Both school systems had problems with graduation rates and are making staying in school a priority by offering advising and closely working with incoming freshmen.
The Thomas County assistant superintendent says Thomas County had one of the few middle schools to pass AYP in the entire state.