Zack Hutchins
Director of Communications

For Release — Thursday, August 29, 2002


Editor's note: The information in this release may be useful as you assemble your "back-to-school" stories. Note that specific schools in all regions of the state that are on the "School Honor Roll" are listed by name at the bottom of this release, and that more specific relevant information on these schools is available on a printer-friendly PDF file that can be accessed from www.bcnys.org/whatsnew/2002/0828roll.htm. That PDF file can also be e-mailed on request.

ALBANY—The Business Council today published a new "School Honor Roll" of schools that have shown the most improvement from 1999 to 2001 as measured by scores on New York State achievement tests that all students must take.

"As students and teachers return to their studies, it is appropriate for all New Yorkers to applaud the schools that have most successfully met the challenge of higher academic standards," said Business Council President Daniel B. Walsh. "These schools have shown that substantial improvement is within reach of schools from all regions of the state and with widely varying levels of poverty and expenditures per student.

"We salute these schools, and their teachers and students and administrators and parents, for giving New Yorkers such impressive goals to strive for."

To produce the honor roll, The Public Policy Institute, the research affiliate of The Business Council, analyzed data from the state Education Department (SED) on the performance of all schools in the state on fourth-grade and eighth-grade tests in both English Language Arts (ELA) and mathematics in 1999, 2000, and 2001. The complete honor roll, sorted by region and by school district, is available in printer-friendly PDF format at www.bcnys.org/pdf/2002/reportcard.pdf. Some of this data — the names of schools and their school districts — is also provided at the bottom of this release.

On those tests, students' results are rated at four levels of proficiency, with 4 denoting the highest level of achievement. A rating of 3 is considering meeting the state's standards; a grade of 4 is considered exceeding them.

To make The Council's School Honor Roll, elementary schools had to show at least a 20 percent improvement in the percentage of students who scored at level 3 or 4 on both the ELA and math tests between 1999 and 2001. Middle schools had to show at least a 10 percent improvement in the percentage of students who scored 3 or 4 on both the ELA and math tests between 1999 and 2001.

The School Honor Roll includes information not only on improvement in academic scores of students, but also information on the schools' percentage of minority students, percentage of students receiving free or reduced-price lunches (the standard metric of poverty), and information on per-pupil expenditures in that school district.

How The Council supports school improvement: Improving teaching and learning in New York State schools is a long-time Business Council priority. For example, The Council strongly supported efforts in recent years to toughen the state's academic standards, to require all students to take tests to document how well they meet those standards, and to produce annual "school report cards" to help students, teachers, parents, and communities compare their schools' performance to previous years' performance and/or to the achievements of other schools in other school districts.

The Council has also argued that schools that best meet this challenge must receive recognition for this achievement. To this end, The Council in 2000 created the Pathfinder Award, which it gives each year to at least two dozen schools around the state that improve their performance from one year to the next as measured by scores on the state's ELA and math tests.

The new School Honor Roll continues The Council's tradition of applauding schools that best meet the challenge to improve, Walsh said.

Schools on The Council's School Honor Roll are:


Capital Region
Troy City: P.S. 2
Mayfield: Mayfield Elementary School
Canajoharie: East Hill School
Granville: Granville Elementary School

Long Island
Uniondale: Grand Avenue School
Valley Stream 13: Willow Road School
Roosevelt: Centennial Avenue School
Valley Stream 24: Robert W. Carbonaro School
Center Moriches: Clayton Huey Elementary School
North Bellmore: Jacob Gunther Elementary School
Uniondale Union Free School District : Walnut Street School
Valley Stream 24: Brooklyn Avenue School
Freeport Union Free School District : Archer Street School
Malverne Union Free School District: Maurice W. Downing School

Lower Hudson Valley
Mount Vernon: Edward Williams School; Holmes School; Longfellow School; Graham School; Pennington Grimes School; Nellie A Thorton School
Yonkers: Robert C. Dodson School; School 30; Montessori School 31; School 22; School 5
Elmsford Union Free School District : Alice E. Grady Elementary School

Mid-Hudson Valley
Valley Central School District: Maybrook
Wallkill Central School District: Ostrander Elementary School
Kingston City School District: Frank L. Meagher


Waverly Central School District: Elm Street Elementary School


Union Springs Central School District: Andrew J. Smith Elementary School
Syracuse City School District: Meachem Elementary School
De Ruyter Central School District: De Ruyter Elementary School


Rochester City School District: School 15 Children's School; School 4 George Mather Forbes
Waterloo Central School District: Border City Elementary School
Spencerport Central School District: Leo Bernabi School
Dalton-Nunda Central School District: Keshequa Elementary School
Wayland Cohoct: Wayland Elementary School
Elba Central School District: Elba Elementary School

New York City

Community School District 21: PS 153 Homecrest School of Music; PS 260 Breuckelen School
Community School District 24: PS 153
Community School District 28: PS 99 Kew Gardens School

North Country & Mohawk Valley

Utica City School District: Martin Luther King School; John F. Hughes School; Thomas Jefferson School; Christopher Columbus School
Salmon River Central School District: Saint Regis Mohawk School
Brushton Moira Central School District: Brushton Grade School
Belleville Henderson: Belleville Henderson School
Gouverneur Central School District: Fowler Elementary School
Hamond Central School District: Hamond Central School

Western New York

Depew Union Free School District: Cayuga Heights School
Randolph Central School District: G.N. Chapman Elementary School
Niagara Falls Central School District: Seventy-Ninth Street School
Niagara Wheatfield: Colonial Village Elementary School


Long Island
Island Trees Union Free School District : Island Trees Middle School
East Hampton Union Free School District: East Hampton Middle School
Levittown Union Free School District: Wisdom Lane Middle School
Hampton Bays Union Free School District: Hampton Bays Secondary School
Half Hollow Hills Central School District: Candlewood Middle School

Lower Hudson Valley

Rye City School District: Rye Middle School
Hendrick Hudson Central School District: Blue Mt. Middle School
Garrison Union Free School District: Garrison School

Mid South

Gilboa Conesville Central School District: Gilboa Conesville
Worcester Central School District: Worcester School
Milford Central School District: Milford Central School
Mid-State Newfield Central School District: Newfield Middle School


Holley Central School District: Holley Middle School

North Country/Mohawk

Utica City School District: John F. Kennedy Middle School
Sackets Harbor Central School District: Sackets Harbor Central School
Lisbon Central School District: Lisbon Central School
Sauquoit Valley Central School District: Sauquoit Valley Middle School

Western New York
Franklinville Central School District: Franklinville Junior-Senior High School
West Valley Central School District: West Valley Central School
Tonawanda City School District: Tonawanda Junior High School

The complete honor roll, sorted by region and by school district, is available in printer-friendly PDF format at www.bcnys.org/pdf/2002/reportcard.pdf. The honor roll includes information on scores, improvement, percentage of students receiving free or reduced-rate lunches, percentage of minority students, and per-pupil expenditures.