Fairdale High School continues to hit benchmarks needed to shed its priority label, according to a state audit report made available last week.
The Kentucky Department of Education Two-Day Progress Monitoring Review looked at multiple reports and data, in-school observations and interviews to give the priority school feedback on improving student performance over the preceding two years. The report also outlined strategies to raise student achievement and improve conditions that support student learning.
Overall, the review team gave the school high marks for its curriculum, instructional design and assessment practices, rating it a 3 on a scale of 4 in 11 of 12 separate categories.
“I am not surprised by these positive external reviews,” said Jefferson County Public School (JCPS) Superintendent Dr. Donna Hargens. “The work happening at Fairdale is an example of what priority schools can do with the right leadership and right support. This is a school keeping students at the center of all decision-making, with all staff contributing on the continuous improvement journey.”
“I’m tremendously proud of our entire Fairdale High School family and the improvements that continue to be made,” said Brad Weston, JCPS assistant superintendent for Area 2 who served as principal of the school until last November. “This reflects not just how well the school is doing academically, but really how well we’re doing in recruiting, hiring and retaining dedicated teachers and staff.”
Brandy Corbin, Fairdale’s principal, said expectations for her students and staff are high – and the report shows both are hitting the right marks. “I see the dedication and work that happens every single day at Fairdale, and to see it reflected in an independent review is rewarding,” she said.
The report cited just one area as an improvement priority – teachers engaging students in learning. Dr. Marco Munoz, director of Priority Schools, said that’s an area that continues to challenge schools across the country. But he noted that Vision 2020, the district’s strategic plan, places an emphasis on deeper learning. “With that focus and direction, we have a clear road map on how we can engage kids and have ownership of the learning,” he said.
The report also indicated the school had satisfactorily addressed an improvement priority identified in the 2014-15 Internal School Review for Fairdale, related to developing and documenting common grading and reporting policies.
Schools in priority status are reviewed every two years by KDE. Fairdale received the shorter, two-day review which focused on the AdvancED Standard 3, Teaching and Assessing for Learning, because of its positive gains in recent years. A copy of the report is attached.