AUSTIN, Texas - The grades are in and Austin Independent School District earned an overall high ‘B’ for 2022, according to the recently released Texas Education Agency ratings.
Monday was the first day of classes for the over 70,000 students enrolled in Austin ISD schools.
AISD Interim Superintendent Dr. Anthony Mays spent most of the day visiting several schools within the district including Bertha Sadler Means Young Women’s Leadership Academy. There, he announced Austin ISD’s TEA rating for 2022: 88 out of 100 or a B.
"We are celebrating today as a comeback story against incredible odds. You all know what our students went through, of course, but look at what they accomplished," he said.
According to TEA, Austin ISD was ranked a "B" in student achievement, school progress, and closing the gaps. In 2019, AISD also received a "B". The district’s overall score of 88 is the third consecutive Recognized Performance designation, effectively translating to a high B grade one point lower than the 89 posted in 2018-19 and in 2017-18, says the district.
"We know that this is just the beginning of this work," said Dr. Mays.
Each school in AISD’s district was also ranked individually with an A, B, or C. Schools ranking lower than a C or had data still under review were labeled as "not rated", a change from previous years due to Senate Bill 1365.
Dr. Mays says out of 116 schools in the district, 10 were given the "not rated" label. The district plans to work with those schools to change that. "We're pretty confident that, again, we can support those campuses we're growing and making the necessary achievement," he said.
Six schools jumped to a C or better:
- Walnut Creek Elementary, up to a B from a D
- Andrews Elementary, up to a C from an F
- Bedichek Middle School, up to a B from a D
- Martin Middle School, up to a C from an F
- Bertha Sadler Means, up to a C from an F
- Covington Middle School, up to a C from a D
Overall, Dr. Mays says most campuses increased their individual ratings from 2019. The district plans to continue that progress. "Our goal is to have a school district that's the best in Texas and I believe in the nation," he said.
82 AISD schools improved by at least one letter over their 2019 rating, according to the TEA report.
40 schools earned overall ratings of A, with 54 schools tallying a combined 149 distinction designations, with Top 25% in Academic Growth accounting for more than one-fifth of those distinctions, says AISD. Distinction designations are only available to schools who earn an overall grade of A, B or C.
Three campuses earned all eligible distinction designations: Cunningham Elementary and Highland Park Elementary, and LASA High School.
Another big battle AISD has been battling is a staff shortage. An AISD spokesperson said at the start of the summer there were more than 1000 vacancies, and now that number is under 200. The district is still working to bring that number down.