PRESS RELEASE - August 12, 2003
New Mexico State Department
of Education

300 Don Gaspar
Santa Fe, NM 87501-2786

Ruth Williams
Public Outreach Director
(505) 476-0393

SDE Revises Six High School Ratings Across the State

(Santa Fe, NM)— The New Mexico State Department of Education (SDE) announced today that it has revised the ratings for six high schools from across the state due to miscodes by school districts. “School districts brought to our attention that there were possible miscodes and/or misclassifications represented in their New Mexico High School Competency Exam data. Once the misclassified students were removed for all 145 high schools from across New Mexico, some schools received a better rating,” said Dr. Melville Morgan, the SDE’s assistant superintendent for accountability and school improvement services.

The high schools affected and their revised ratings are as follows:

School/District .................................................Rating Announced on 8/4 .........Revised Rating
Cloudcroft High School, Cloudcroft .................Meets Standards........ ............. Exceeds Standards
East Mountain High School, Albuquerque .........Exceeds Standards.................. Exemplary
Eunice High School,.Eunice ..............................Meets Standards...................... Exceeds Standards
Jal High School, Jal ..........................................Exceeds Standards................... Exemplary
La Cueva High School, Albuquerque ...............Exceeds Standards ....................Exemplary
Rio Rancho High School, Rio Rancho ..............Meets Standards .......................Exceeds Standards

The miscodes or misclassifications occurred when districts included in their 10th grade data students who did not pass the high school competency exam on the first try and were taking the test for a second time. The SDE considers scores of first time test takers in 10th grade only.

“It is important that schools pay very close attention to their data,” said Dr. Morgan. “Because high-stakes decisions rest on the data that form the basis for the ratings, it is extremely important that we consider and are responsive to any errors in data that are brought to our attention.”

With the revisions, the number of exemplary schools in New Mexico increased from 12 to 15, the number of exceeds standards schools remains at 42, the number of meets standards schools decreased from 523 or 520 and the number of probationary schools remains at 164.