North Bellmore schools rewarded by the state


Administrators in the North Bellmore School District recently announced that three of its five schools were named Reward Schools by the New York State Department of Education.

Janet Pollitt, interim director of curriculum and instruction, said that Martin Avenue, Newbridge Road and Saw Mill Road elementary schools were all granted the designation by the state at the Nov. 14 Board of Education meeting. Reward status is a given to schools across the state that are in “good standing.”

The state Department of Education’s system for measuring schools’ accountability and overall performance is broken into four tiers. The department website explains that every school in the state was either given a priority (schools or districts in the lowest 5 percent statewide), focus (schools or districts that “must develop comprehensive plans to support improvement efforts”), local assistance plan (schools or districts that must improve to avoid the focus designation) or good standing designation. Pollitt noted that all five North Bellmore schools are in good standing.

To receive the additional Reward School distinction, each one had to meet five criteria. Pollitt said that although the Park Avenue and John G. Dinkelmeyer schools did not receive Reward status this year, they met the majority of the standards.

“All of our schools met many of them,” she said of the criteria. “A few just did not meet all of them.”

The status report was based on data collected from the 2010-11 and 2011-12 academic years. The five criteria are: adequate yearly progress, performance index, gap closing, student growth percentiles and bottom quartile student growth.

All of North Bellmore’s schools met the adequate yearly progress standard. District Superintendent Maria Testa said this, in particular, was a point of pride for the North Bellmore district.

“As an educator and leader of the district, I’m pleased that all of our schools met the adequate yearly progress standard,” she said. “We’re very proud of all of our schools.”

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