By Bob Weaver

Calhoun Schools are waiting on the release of Westest 2 scores, with the schools already showing improvement by not being designated among the state's most struggling schools.

Calhoun Superintendent of Schools said, "We coming out of the hole."

Results from last year's standardized tests have been delayed by the West Virginia Department of Education, with the way educators analyze the data being new.

Because the U.S. Department of Education granted West Virginia a waiver in to relieve schools of federal rules associated with No Child Left Behind, the latest results from Westest 2 will now be used to classify schools in one of five new designations.

Before, when the state's educators received the test scores, they were looking at a cut-line, did the school make Adequate Yearly Progress?

The yes-or-no criteria about the school's achievement could determine the federal funding a school received under the Bush-era law.

Critics of No Child Left Behind claim the formula led to teaching to the test, and was not focused on appropriate learning.

Now, schools will be evaluated on progress with accountability, says the WV Department of Education.

"Parents have been accustomed to seeing that 'yes' or 'no' designation. That's no longer the case. This is a fairer system to schools. This is the first year schools get credit for making progress," said Robert Hull, an associate superintendent at the state Department of Education.

Schools will have one of five classifications: priority, support, focus, transition and success.

The change also has "growth data" built in, which will show parents and teachers how individual students have developed.

"Parents will see trajectory information - where they've been, where they are, what they'll have to make in order to improve for the next year," Hull said.

Hull said that the state's most struggling schools - those designated as priority or support schools - were already labeled months ago.

State officials told the Hur Herald the Westest 2 results will be released soon.

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