School tops in growth

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Triumphs of Harriman Middle cited

By Cindy Simpson

Harriman Middle School will be getting a visit from Tennessee Department of Education officials this year because of the school’s improvements in seventh-grade language arts.
The school did extremely well this year in its Tennessee Value Added Assessment System scores.
“Harriman Middle School finished the top 10 in the state last year in their growth (overall),” said Roane County Schools Director Gary Aytes.
The report assesses the schools in both achievement and value added.
Aytes explained that achievement is the level of proficient and advanced, while value added assesses how the students grew in knowledge for the year.
He reviewed the school system’s TVAAS report with the Roane County Board of Education last week.
Aytes said the state overall struggled in the seventh-grade language arts area, so state officials are keen to see what Harriman Middle School was doing right to improve.
“They are coming to see how they did such a great job. They did real well,” Aytes said.
The growth is on a zero scale, with a zero and up meaning the student population grew.
Aytes said the school system’s TVAAS scores are the best they’ve had since the system has been in place since 2007.
One area the school system has improved is in math.
Aytes credits that to the implementation of math coaches and hard work on the part of math teachers.
“Last year we made a big jump. This year we made an even bigger jump,” Aytes said.